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Grants and Other Financial Assistance Programs

FY2021: Career and Technical Education Partnership Planning Grant

Fund Code: 405B


The purpose of this federally funded competitive Career and Technical Education (CTE) Partnership Planning Grant (Phase 1) is to support regional and local partnerships to expand existing and/or develop new CTE programs and initiatives that increase student access to CTE opportunities, primarily through more effective use and integration of existing capacity and resources. Eligible students include secondary and other students served under the Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act, P.L. 109-270 Download PDF Document. Services provided are to supplement currently funded local, state, and federal programs. Please Note: This competitive grant opportunity is not intended to fund Innovation Pathways. There are other funds dedicated for that initiative.


Priority will be given to applicants that:

  • Provide students access to a minimum of 900 hours of Chapter 74 level programming at vocational technical education districts serving Gateway Cities* where access to admittance into the regional vocational technical high school that serves that Gateway City is limited by oversubscription relative to capacity.

  • Convene regional/local partners to expand existing and/or develop new CTE programs and initiatives that increase student access to CTE opportunities. Partnerships include but are not limited to vocational/technical high schools, comprehensive high schools, community colleges, publicly funded adult education institutions, workforce development boards, businesses, economic development agencies, and community-based organizations that offer publicly funded educational services. Partnerships should result in opportunities to sustain CTE programming after the funding for planning and implementation sunsets.

    Please Note: The Program Advisory Committees for targeted Chapter 74 programs should be included in both the planning and—if awarded separately—implementation phases.

  • Leverage the use of existing resources among the participating partners, in order to maximize capacity, impact, and sustainability.

  • Develop innovative models and action plans that would lead to an implementation strategy and grant (Phase 2) intended to increase student seats and access to Career Technical Education (CTE) training for jobs that are in demand and aligned with current labor market data.

  • Serve traditionally underserved populations.

  • Provide students with a sequence of courses that will lead to technical skill proficiency, an industry-recognized credential, and/or an associate degree.

  • Ensure proposed programs will integrate academic and technical content into new programs and/or the expansion of current programs.

  • Propose a concrete strategy for sustainability as an educational option for students upon conclusion of the Implementation Phase should an applicant receive both a planning and implementation grant.


Eligible applicants include school districts, school consortia, educational collaboratives and community colleges. Please identify and indicate in the application which partner will serve as project lead for this initiative.

Current recipients of FY2021 FC405 Career and Technical Education Partnership Planning Grant funds are not eligible for FY2021 FC405B funding.

Partner agencies may include employers, other publicly-funded educational institutions, workforce development boards, or community-based organizations that provide publicly funded educational services, but cannot include private proprietary schools or private postsecondary institutions. Applicants must submit a Schedule C in order to identify proposed partners in this planning grant.

Application Requirements:

The Lead Applicant must submit the application through a submission portal. The application consists of online responses and uploads of specific documents listed below. Additional attachments are permitted but will not factor into final scoring.

Funding Type:

Federal CFDA: 84.048


Eligible applicants may apply for up to approximately $15,000 for one (1) planning grant. It is anticipated that the total amount available will be approximately $200,000 for planning grants and a total of approximately $800,000 for subsequent implementation grants, contingent on funding availability. Maximum Individual award amounts for implementation grants will be approximately $100,000. The Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act, P.L. 109-270 Download PDF Document is the funding source for these grants. Please note that only FY2021 FC405 and FC405B grantees will be eligible for anticipated competitive Implementation grants.

Partnership models may include, but are not limited to:

  • The provision of CTE courses/programs at regional/comprehensive schools during after school hours and weekends.
  • Making an existing facility available to another school.
  • The creation of a half-day split schedule so students can spend half a day in their CTE courses/programs, and the other half in other coursework.
  • The creation of partnerships with local businesses to serve as host sites for teacher-supervised CTE learning environments.
  • Career pathways development.
  • The creation of partnerships between CTE programs and Adult Career Pathway programs.
  • Shifting programs between/among schools to increase the potential for expanding specialized space (e.g. moving an IT program to a comprehensive/traditional school to allow expansion of Advanced Manufacturing program space at a vocational technical school).
  • The creation of technically focused schools-within-schools.

The student population served through this funding opportunity may include grades 7 through 14, including access to apprenticeship programs.

Funding is contingent upon availability. All dollar amounts listed are estimated/approximate and are subject to change. If more funding becomes available it will be distributed under the same guidelines that appear in this RFP document.

Please Note: This competitive grant opportunity is not intended to fund Innovation Pathways. There are other funds dedicated for that initiative.

Fund Use:

Grant funds must be used to support collaborative planning among local partners to develop an implementation plan for activities/initiatives that will increase student seats and student access to CTE pathways/programs, particularly for underserved populations. All planning activities must be appropriate and consistent with all applicable state and federal requirements.

Funds may be used for:

  • Stipends to support convening and planning.
  • Consultant and contract fees to provide planning-related professional development.
  • Other costs that are negotiated with the Department.

Recipients of these planning funds will be required to submit, via the abovementioned submission portal, a Final Report to the Department describing:

  • The outcomes of the planning process; and
  • How the funds were used.

This Planning Grant is the first phase of a two-phase process that will result in Implementation (Phase 2) funding, contingent upon the availability of funds, for plans that will have the greatest impact on increasing access to CTE programs for students. Please note that only FY2021 FC405 and FC405B grantees will be eligible for anticipated competitive Implementation grants. Award of a Planning grant does not guarantee Implementation phase funding.

Funds must be spent in accordance with the guidelines provided in the Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act Download PDF Document. See Section 135, Local Uses of Funds (p. 62).

Project Duration:

Upon approval – June 30, 2021. All funds must be obligated and activities completed by June 30, 2021, with a final report completed by July 31, 2021.

The anticipated Phase 2 Implementation grant will tentatively be due in the Spring of 2021 and will be submitted via the abovementioned online submission portal. The tentative duration of the Phase 2 implementation grant will be Upon Approval (no earlier than July 1, 2021) – June 30, 2022.

Eligible recipients for the anticipated competitive Phase 2 Implementation Grant will be restricted to FY2021 FC405 and FC405B awardees.

Program Unit:

Office for College, Career, and Technical Education


Larry DeSalvatore, 781-338-3953
Tim Moriarty

Required Prior to Grant Submission:

Interested applicants are required to submit an Intent to Apply via the abovementioned submission portal. The Intent will include:

  • the name(s) of the lead school district, consortia, educational collaboratives or public postsecondary institution for which the applicant seeks planning funding; and
  • the contact information (name, title, email address, and phone number) for the applicant and lead personnel who should be included on any communications regarding this grant program prior to the submission of a full application.

Please Note: The Intent to Apply should be completed as soon as possible and must be completed prior to submission of the grant application. The submission portal will not permit applicants to proceed to the application without first having completed an Intent to Apply.

Date Due:

Completed grant proposals must be submitted to the Department via an online portal by 5:00 p.m. on Wednesday, October 28, 2020.

Required Forms:

As Part of the online submission, applicants will upload the following 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 Detail Pages (Include both pages).
Download Word Document
Schedule C — Statement of Participation and Support
Signed letters of commitment from all partners

Download Word Document
Part III — Required Program Information is embedded in the online submission form.

Submission Instructions:

Grant applications are submitted online via a submission portal.

Applicants are required to:

  • Create a username, using the email address of the contact person for the application and a unique password
  • Create a brief Profile of the contact person
  • Complete a brief Intent to Apply form
  • Complete and submit the Application

These steps need not be completed in a single online session.

Awarded Recipients: Upon award, recipients will be required to enter the approved budget and Part I in EdGrants. Once selected, recipients will be contacted with further instructions on the process.

* The Massachusetts Legislature defines 26 Gateway Cities in the Commonwealth: Attleboro, Barnstable, Brockton, Chelsea, Chicopee, Everett, Fall River, Fitchburg, Haverhill, Holyoke, Lawrence, Leominster, Lowell, Lynn, Malden, Methuen, New Bedford, Peabody, Pittsfield, Quincy, Revere, Salem, Springfield, Taunton, Westfield, and Worcester.

Last Updated: September 24, 2020

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