Grants and Other Financial Assistance Programs

FY2022: Accelerating Literacy Learning with High-Quality Instructional Materials

Fund Codes: 730/719

Purpose:

The purpose of this competitive grant program is to equip schools and districts with the high-quality core instructional materials needed to accelerate literacy learning, particularly as schools recover from extended closures and students require rich instructional support to accelerate their learning.

This grant will support schools and districts to purchase new core instructional materials for literacy, as well as initial professional development for educators to implement those materials. High-quality core curricular materials for any grade, kindergarten through grade 12, are eligible.

Priorities:

DESE seeks to award Literacy Acceleration grants to entities (e.g., schools and districts, charter schools, collaboratives, approved special education programs) that:

  • Demonstrate a pre-existing priority on literacy, which the new curricular materials directly support, and evidence that implementation of the new resources will be sustainable;
  • Have conducted or plan to conduct an intentional and inclusive process to select new curricular materials that meet local needs and priorities;
  • Articulate a plan to provide robust, ongoing and embedded support for educators who are expected to use new curricular materials;
  • Will advance culturally responsive practice as part of implementing new curricular materials.

Priority will be given to:

  • Entities serving fewer than 2000 students total (e.g., a district or charter school whose total student population is fewer than 2000 students); and/or
  • Districts and schools in chronically underperforming status; and/or
  • Entities that are currently implementing literacy curricular materials that do not meet expectations for quality based on a third-party review, and are planning to replace those with high-quality instructional materials. (See Additional Information below for more details.)
Eligibility:

All Massachusetts public school districts, charter schools, collaboratives, and approved special education programs are eligible to apply.

All schools in the district serving the designated grade band must participate in the purchase and implementation of curricular materials under this grant. For instance, if the district is funded to purchase curricular materials for grades 6–8, all schools in the district that serve grades 6–8 must participate.

Funding Type:

State
Federal (CFDA 84.425U)

Funding:

Approximately $944,000 is available for schools and districts. The maximum award for any LEA is $200,000.

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.

Fund Use:

Funds may be used towards:

  1. Purchase of high-quality core curricular materials for ELA/Literacy in any grade or grade span
    • Core curricular materials are used as the primary instructional material for core, or Tier 1, instruction.
    • "High quality core curricular materials" is defined as: comprehensive curricular materials for ELA/Literacy that are rated "meets expectations" or "partially meets expectations" overall based upon a CURATE review. If a CURATE review is not available, materials must be rated "all-green" on EdReports' Gateway 1 and Gateway 2 to meet the definition of "high-quality."
    • Comprehensive core curricular materials (K–12) and reading foundational skills core curricular materials (K–3) are both eligible.
    • The purchase must be made by June 30, 2022.
    • If the selected curricular materials are hard-copy, this grant will fund purchase of all core components for all participating classrooms and schools. If the materials are digital, this grant will fund up to a 3-year license package which includes all the program's core components for all participating schools.
  2. Initial professional development at all schools using the new curricular materials purchased as part of this grant.
    • Curriculum publishers often offer initial professional development as part of the curriculum purchase package. That can be funded under this grant.
    • Recipients may opt to purchase initial PD from any vendor listed on the Professional Learning Partner Guide instead of the publisher.
    • Note: This grant funding must be spent by June 30, 2022, so only introductory PD occurring before June 30, 2022 will be eligible for funding.
  3. Stipends for educators and community members who are participating in a team or committee process to select curricular materials for their school or district (e.g., serving on a district Curriculum Committee)
  4. Stipends for educators to attend professional development on new curricular materials beyond regular contractual hours, if necessary

Funds may not be used towards technology (e.g., iPads, headphones, smart boards), substitute costs, consultants, or staffing.

Project Duration:

Upon Approval – 6/30/2022

Program Unit:

Office of Literacy and Humanities, Center for Instructional Support

Contact:

Mary Brown

Date Due:

Friday, January 7, 2022
Proposals must be received at the Department by 5:00 p.m. on the date due.

Required Forms:
Additional Information:

EdReports and CURATE provide curricular reviews and ratings. Educators should consult these reports to determine if the curricular materials currently in use meet expectations for quality. Some popular curricular materials that do not meet expectations for quality on EdReports and/or CURATE include the following. Schools and districts currently using any of these materials would receive priority for this grant in order to support replacing the low-quality materials.

Submission Instructions:

Please email the required documents as listed above, attached to a single email, to instructionalsupport@doe.mass.edu using the subject line ACCELERATING LITERACY GRANT. Please use the provided filetypes (word and excel). Signature pages should be sent as word or pdf documents.

Applicants will receive a confirmation when the materials are received. Early submission is strongly encouraged to ensure the complete application is received and confirmed by 5pm on the due date.

Awarded Recipients: Upon award, recipients will be required to enter the approved budget and upload Part I — Program Unit Signature Page and Part III — Required Program Information into EdGrants. Once selected, recipients will be contacted with further instructions on the process.

Last Updated: January 18, 2022

 
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