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Grants and Other Financial Assistance Programs

FY2019: Healthy Schools for Student Success (Healthy Schools)

Fund Code: 650


The purpose of this federally funded non-competitive grant is to support priority districts to improve student health and educational outcomes. This funding is provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's (CDC's) Improving Student Health and Academic Achievement through Nutrition, Physical Activity and the Management of Chronic Conditions in Schools cooperative agreement.


The main priority for this grant is to support priority districts and their selected schools to adopt the Whole School, Whole Community, Whole Child Model through the following strategies and activities.

  • Self-assess, monitor and evaluate policies and programs using tools that include but are not limited to the School Health Index (SHI), the CDC School Health Profiles, Youth Risk Behavior Survey, WellSAT 2.0, and the Massachusetts Physical Activity Assessment for Schools;

  • As part of using the SHI, create school-based action plans to improve school health environments during both in-school and out-of-school (OST) time; and

  • Access high quality professional development (PD), training and technical assistance (TA) to improve the infrastructure and impact of nutrition, physical activity and chronic disease management policies and programs in schools.


The following districts were confirmed as eligible priority grant partners in the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education's (DESE's) approved cooperative agreement with the CDC:

Brockton, Chelsea, Fitchburg, Holyoke, Salem, and Wareham.

Note: As required by the CDC application process, in coordination with the Massachusetts Department of Public Health (DPH), DESE identified and prioritized districts to target for participation using data related to student and community health outcomes (obesity, availability of nutritious food, economic disadvantage, etc.) and student academic outcomes (accountability levels, dropout, absenteeism, etc.). Outreach was conducted using this prioritization to secure letters of support from six districts for participation.

Healthy Schools-sponsored activities and approaches that DESE implements at a statewide level (e.g., advisory meetings, PD and training/TA opportunities) will likely be available to all districts with need.

Funding Type:

Federal CFDA 93.981


A total of approximately $60,000 is available in Fiscal Year 2018-2019 (FY19). Each eligible district may apply for up to $10,000 to support district and school-based grant activities.

Pending continued CDC funding, districts participating in FY19 will be eligible for up to a total of five years (through FY23) of funding to support implementation of activities outlined in submitted action plans, as well as to engage in the self-assessment, action-planning and implementation process with additional schools.

DESE reserves the right to alter the award to each funded district.

Funding is contingent upon availability. All dollar amounts listed are estimated/approximate and are subject to change. If more funding is to become available it will be distributed under the same guideline as listed in the initial RFP document.

Fund Use:

Funds must be used to support district and school-based activities to implement the identified grant priorities and required activities (below). Costs may include, but are not limited to: teacher stipends, consultants, substitutes, and materials.

Funds may be used to support consultants to help facilitate the action planning and/or implementation processes.

Required Activities: Grantees will establish district- and school-based teams that will:

  • Use the SHI (See Additional Information section below for more information about the SHI) and other related resources to conduct a robust self-assessment, prioritization and action-planning process. Teams should meet regularly throughout the year to develop plans and monitor implementation.
    • DESE staff and/or a partnering TA organization will also provide 1–2 on-site visits to help facilitate local team meetings and planning activities. Additional support throughout the year may be available, as needed.
    • Schools that are also participating in self-assessment and action planning for Safe and Supportive Schools, Rethinking Discipline or other related initiatives should identify opportunities to integrate/align these with this work to the maximum extent possible.

  • Develop and submit detailed action plans (the SHI will guide teams through this) that outline the 2–4 priority areas, evidence to support those challenges, root causes, target outcomes, and systems/strategies that the district/school intends to take to address those challenges/barriers and improve the school wellness environment. Plans should be aligned with other district/school plans and initiatives, including but not limited to district and school improvement plans (if applicable).

  • Participate in CDC- and DESE-offered PD, including a minimum of two in-person sessions per year.
    • Grantees should save the date and are encouraged to attend a DESE-sponsored event on November 1, 2018 that will bring together districts participating in related initiatives focused on support the needs of the "whole" child and reducing barriers to learning.
    • The CDC has engaged a wide variety of national partners (NGOs) to provide PD, training and TA on the priorities of this initiative.
    • DESE will share information about these opportunities, when available. Districts are encouraged to participate, when applicable.

  • Implement, monitor and evaluate the systems and strategies outlined in the action plan(s). Districts will participate in administration of the Youth Risk Behavior Survey in all high schools. Districts will be expected to report out on progress and target outcomes for both the school and district implementation throughout the duration of the grant.

Project Duration:

Upon Approval – 06/29/2019

Program Unit:

Office of Student and Family Support


Chiniqua Milligan
Kristen McKinnon

Phone Number:

(781) 338-3010

Date Due:

Friday, November 5, 2018

Proposals must be received at the Department by 5:00 p.m. on the date due.

Required Forms:
Download Word Document
Part I — General — Program Unit Signature Page — (Standard Contract Form and Application for Program Grants)

Download Excel Document
Part II — Budget Workbook
  • For drafting FY19 budget, enter budget by line item directly into EdGrants (not uploaded)

Download Word Document
Part III — Required Program Information
  • Enter online as one PDF per the Submission Instructions

Download Word Document
Grant Assurances
  • Complete with initials and signature of superintendent, grant team lead, and business official/grants management contact, as applicable

District Wellness Policy (applicant created)
  • Applicants must submit a copy of the district's current Wellness Policy

Additional Information:
  1. School Health Index (SHI): Self-Assessment & Planning Guide
    All schools participating in this grant will use the SHI to guide their self-assessment and action planning. This tool provides extensive resources and guidance to school/district teams to support this process. There is an e-learning course that must be completed prior to accessing

    The SHI is an online self-assessment and planning tool (also available in a downloadable, printable version) that schools can use to improve their health and safety policies and programs. It's easy to use and completely confidential.

    The SHI was developed by CDC in partnership with school administrators and staff, school health experts, parents, and national nongovernmental health and education agencies to
    • Enable schools to identify strengths and weaknesses of health and safety policies and programs.
    • Enable schools to develop an action plan for improving student health, which can be incorporated into the School Improvement Plan.
    • Engage teachers, parents, students, and the community in promoting health-enhancing behaviors and better health.

    The SHI is based on CDC's research-based guidelines for school health programs, which identify the policies and practices most likely to be effective in reducing youth health risk behaviors.

  2. Virtual Healthy Schools
    The CDC's Virtual Healthy School (VHS) is an interactive site "that shows you how components of the Whole School, Whole Community, Whole Child (WSCC) model can be integrated into your school." This site includes an extensive list of resources to support this work.


Submit all required grant materials through EdGrants.

In EdGrants, districts are required to create and name the project. Please use the following naming convention for your "Applicant Project Name" in EdGrants:

"FY19 650 SFS (Applicant Name)"

All items listed under the required forms section of this RFP should be uploaded / attached in the Attachments List formlet of the Application Submission in EdGrants. The final budget the applicant is requesting will be entered directly into EdGrants as part of the application submission process.

For Guidance Documents regarding EdGrants, visit EdGrants: User Guides and Information.

Please note: It is up to the district to determine who they want to add as EdGrants Front Office users in order to submit the grant application as well as payment request information. Please review the EdGrants: User Security Controls to make informed decisions regarding assigning your district level users.

Contact Us

Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education
75 Pleasant Street, Malden, MA 02148-4906

Voice: (781) 338-3000
TTY: (800) 439-2370


Disclaimer: A reference in this website to any specific commercial products, processes, or services, or the use of any trade, firm, or corporation name is for the information and convenience of the public and does not constitute endorsement or recommendation by the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education.