Grants and Other Financial Assistance Programs

FY2019: Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) Federal Special Education Entitlement Grant

Fund Code: 240


Within the articulated priority of Results-Driven Accountability by the U.S. Department of Education's Office of Special Education Programs, the purpose of this federal special education entitlement grant program is to provide funds to ensure that eligible students with disabilities receive a free and appropriate public education that includes special education and related services designed to meet their individual needs.


The priorities of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act - 2004 (IDEA-2004) are to:

  1. ensure that all children with disabilities have available to them a free and appropriate public education that emphasizes special education and related services designed to meet their unique needs and prepare them for further education, employment, and independent living;

  2. ensure that the rights of children with disabilities and their parents are protected;

  3. assist States, localities, educational service agencies, and Federal agencies to provide for the education of all children with disabilities;

  4. assess and ensure the effectiveness of efforts to educate children with disabilities.

(34 CFR § 300.1; authority: 20 U.S.C. § 1400(d).)

Funds available under this federal entitlement program are intended for use by districts in providing eligible students with special education services and activities deemed essential for students' success in school. Services and activities supported by this grant for students ages 3 through 21 must ensure compliance with state special education laws (M.G.L. c. 71B) and regulations (603 CMR 28.00), and the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act - 2004 (IDEA-2004).

When considering fund use, each school district should review results from its most recent Coordinated Program Review or Mid-Cycle Review, review district performance in relation to the indicators specified in the Massachusetts State Performance Plan, and review the 2017 Special Education Determination levels.

Additionally, to support effective planning and the strategic use of grant funds to support improved outcomes for students with disabilities, in FY19 districts required to participate in Making Money Matter (M3) are those with:

  1. a 2017 special education determination level of Needs Technical Assistance (NTA), Needs Intervention (NI), or Needs Substantial Intervention (NSI); and
  2. one or more schools serving grades 3–8 with 2017 MCAS English language arts (ELA) and/or mathematics achievement percentiles 1-10, and/or one or more high schools serving grades 9–12 only with 2017 accountability percentiles 1–10.

FY19 M3 districts are directed to use a minimum of 2% – 4% of the entitlement amount made available under Fund Code 240 for the improvement of student performance. (34 CFR § 300.600)


Funds are awarded to public school districts with approved Special Education Program Plan Statements based on an allocation formula that takes into account total school enrollment in both public and private elementary and secondary schools, and the number children living in poverty, as determined by the State in those same groups.

Please note that the DESE reserves the right to require that these funds be used to correct areas of identified noncompliance.

FY19 M3 districts must submit additional information in order for funds to be awarded. Additional submission requirements for these districts are described below; and the FY19 M3 District List is available in the additional information section of this RFP, as an attachment.

Funding Type:

Federal CFDA: 84.027

Download Excel Document
FY2019 Fund Code 240 IDEA Allocations

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 guidelines as listed in the initial RFP document.

Fund Use:

General Fund Use — All Districts

Federal special education funds are given to school districts to assist them in providing appropriate special education services for eligible students and to address the priorities listed above. Districts are reminded of their responsibility to maintain state/local effort in special education. See Special Education Administrative Advisory SPED 2016-2: Requirements related to Maintenance of Effort and Technical Assistance Advisory SPED 2011-1: Annual Fiscal Calculations.

IDEA also requires districts to designate federal funds to meet proportionate share obligations and expenditures for parentally placed private school students and home schooled students. All districts must submit the required proportionate share forms with the FY19 IDEA Part B (Fund Code 240) grant application. See the ESE web page for more information about Proportionate Share Services for Students with Disabilities Enrolled by Their Parents in Private Schools.

Additional Directed Fund Use — Making Money Matter (M3)

In FY19 districts required to participate in Making Money Matter (M3) are those with:

  1. a 2017 special education determination level of Needs Technical Assistance (NTA), Needs Intervention (NI), or Needs Substantial Intervention (NSI); and
  2. one or more schools serving grades 3–8 with 2017 MCAS English language arts (ELA) and/or mathematics achievement percentiles 1-10, and/or one or more high schools serving grades 9–12 only with 2017 accountability percentiles 1–10.

For additional information regarding special education determination of district need for technical assistance or intervention please review the 2017 Determination of Need for Special Education Technical Assistance or Intervention on the ESE Accountability Lists, Materials, and Tools webpage.

FY19 M3 districts continue to be required to re-direct for targeted use between 2% and 4% of the total special education entitlement allocation for FY19. This percent range may change in the future. Within this range, districts may choose the percentage of funds to re-direct toward appropriate activities selected to create meaningful and sustainable change and accelerate improvement in student outcomes.

The directed fund use is to support the following program improvement activities in FY19:

  1. implementing the district's M3 action plan (developed through FY18 240 funds) and making data-based midcourse corrections, and

  2. maintaining the M3 multi-year strategic plan (developed or updated through FY18 240 funds) and updating it as needed, in consultation with David Parker at, in the office of Statewide System of Support.

As part of the Fund Code 240 application, identified districts must submit a completed M3 SmartForm. Districts must identify the percent and amount of funds being redirected for systemic improvement initiatives, complete a set of assurances, and project the district's FY19 M3 Spending Plan in the grant application.

Note: The optional use of some funds available through discretionary grant Fund Code 274 for M3 activities to offset the use of Fund Code 240 funds that was available in prior years is not available for FY19. All FY19 M3 funds must be identified from districts' Fund Code 240 allocation.

DESE will pursue opportunities for districts participating in this focused fund use initiative to engage in technical assistance, training, and networking throughout the year. More information about these opportunities will be forthcoming.

All districts identified for M3 that are already partnering with the DESE Statewide System of Support are directed to propose activities that target outcomes for students with disabilities and complement the district's or school's existing improvement process, initiatives, and outcome measures.

Project Duration:

Upon Approval – 6/30/2019 (Year 1)*

*The period of availability for this grant award can be extended beyond Year 1 based on utilizing the multi-year feature for this Funding Opportunity in EdGrants. Extended period as follows: 7/1/2019 – 6/30/2020 (Year 2); 7/1/2020 – 9/30/2020 (Year 3)

Program Unit:

Resource Allocation Strategy and Planning


Federal Grant Programs

Phone Number:

(781) 338-6230

Date Due:

Wednesday, October 31, 2018

Required Forms:

The budget is required to be filled out in EdGrants, complete with line item descriptions.

Attachments Required for all LEAs:
Download Excel Document
Cover Sheet with an original signature of the Superintendent/Executive Director
Download Excel Document
Proportionate Share Calculation Form (must be completed on a PC, not a Mac)

Required Attachments if applicable:
Download Excel Document
Coordinated Early Intervening Services (CEIS) form (previously known as Coordinated Instructional Support Services) (must be completed on a PC, not a Mac)
Download Excel Document
M3 SmartForm for FY19 districts (must be completed on a PC, not a Mac)
Download Excel Document
Schedule A Attachment

Additional Information:
Download Word Document
Fund Code 240 Quick Reference Guide on allowable and unallowable costs
Download Word Document
Checklist and Instructions for Completing FY19 SPED 240 Grant Application
Download Word Document
FY19 Proportionate Share — Calculation Form Instructions
Download Excel Document
FY19 M3 District List
Download Word Document
FY19 M3 SmartForm Instructions
View HTML Page


The start date for each grant is the date on which the district submits substantially approvable information and budget for that grant.

Submission Instructions:

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 240 SPED [LEA Code -District 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. This includes a signed / scanned PDF of Part I / Coversheet with Superintendent's signature, Proportionate Share Calculation Form as well as all other applicable forms. 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 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.

Last Updated: July 18, 2018

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