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Grants and Other Financial Assistance Programs: FY2012

Charter Schools Start Up Assistance
Fund Code: 535

Purpose: The purpose of this federally-funded grant program is to provide new Commonwealth and Horace Mann charter schools with start-up funds for planning and implementing the charter schools' educational plan, academic goals and objectives, and for meeting start-up related costs.
Priorities: In addition to baseline funding of $65,000-150,000, Planning and Second Year schools are eligible for additional funding if they meet the priorities described below.
  1. Expanded Learning Time (up to an additional $65,000 per year): The charter school will provide all of its students with a rigorous, coherent educational program using expanded learning time.A school will be considered to be providingexpanded learning timeif it operates a calendar/schedule that provides a rigorous, coherent educational program of at least 1,300 hours annually for all students. (Massachusetts regulations require all elementary schools to provide at least 900 hours of structured learning time and all secondary schools to provide at least 990 hours of structured learning time.)
  2. Targeted Area (up to an additional $50,000 per year): The charter school will serve students in and be physically located in atargeted area.Atargeted area is defined as a Title I school district that is in Corrective Action status under NCLB - in the aggregate or for subgroups for either English language arts or mathematics based on the most recent determination available at the time of the charter application. In the case of a Horace Mann conversion, this priority will be considered to be met if the school itself is identified for improvement, corrective action, or restructuring under NCLB.
  3. Secondary School Focus (up to an additional $10,000 per year): The charter school will serve a secondary school population through the completion of high school in a targeted area. A middle/high school serving grades 6 through 12 or a high school serving grades 9 through 12 will meet this priority. However, a middle school serving only grades 6 through 8 will not meet this priority.
Eligibility: Option A - Planning Period: these funds are available to charter schools that have been granted a charter but have not yet opened.

Option B - 1stYear Implementation: these funds are available to charter schools that are in their first year of operation serving students. For FY2012, only a base amount will be available.

Option C - 2ndYear Implementation: these funds are available to charter schools that are in their second year of operation serving students.
Funding: Funding is subject to federal appropriation. Each allocation is projected to be from $65,000 to $300,000, in total, depending on the start-up year enrollment and whether the priorities described above are met. Specific grant allocations will be sent to eligible charter schools under separate cover.
Fund Use: Schools are given discretion on how to spend their grant funds for the planning and implementation of their charter as granted by the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education, as long as the following requirements and monitoring benchmarks are met. Provide more detail as instructed in Part III - Required Program Information.

Option A - Planning Period
  1. Budget narrative includes at least $5,000 for fiscal policies and procedures development and $10,000 for curriculum and assessment system development.
  2. Prior planning period fiscal audit, or waiver to extend audit period, submitted.
  3. Pre-enrollment numbers submitted consistent with charter.
  4. Attendance at all spring Opening Procedures trainings.
Option B - 1stYear Implementation
  1. Budget narrative includes at least $10,000 for data management systems.
  2. Completed Opening Procedures Checklist.
  3. Planning year fiscal audit or waiver to extend audit period submitted.
  4. Enrollment figures verified.
  5. Successful full-day onsite verification of initial implementation of all major federal and state programs (Special Education, English Language Learners, Title I, and Nutrition).
Option C - 2ndYear Implementation
  1. Budget narrative includes at least $5,000 for governance development and at least $5,000 for an external review of school operations.
  2. Draft Accountability Plan and Annual Report for Year 1 submitted prior to start of Year 2.
  3. Year 1 fiscal audit submitted.
  4. Enrollment figures verified.
For All Eligible Charter Schools
  1. Indirect costs may not be charged to these grants.
  2. With the exception of minor renovations required to comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act, funds may not be used for capital construction or facilities lease costs. ForOption A - Planning Period only, funds may be used for up to three months of facilities lease costs prior to the opening of the school to students.

All spending must be consistent with applicable state and federal regulations and guidelines.
Project Duration: September 1, 2011 - July 31, 2012
Program Unit: Charter School Office
Contact: Joanna Laghettojlaghetto@doe.mass.edu
Phone Number: (781) 338-3221
Date Due: Friday, August 19, 2011.
Proposals must be received at the Department by 5:00 p.m. on the date due.
Required Forms:
  1. Download PDF Document Download MS WORD document  Part I - General - Program Unit Signature Page - (Standard Contract Form and Application for Program Grants)
  2. Download MS EXCEL file  Part II - Budget Detail Pages and Budget Narrative
  3. Download PDF Document Download MS WORD document  Part III - Required Program Information
Additional Information: View HTML Page  Budget Detail - Description of Line Item Information
Submission Instructions: Submit two (2) sets, each with the original signature of the charter school leader or Chair of the school's Board of Trustees. Mail to:

Joanna Laghetto
Charter School Office
Massachusetts Department of
Elementary and Secondary Education
75 Pleasant Street
Malden, MA 02148-4906


Last Updated: August 15, 2011
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