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Grants and Other Financial Assistance Programs

FY2023: Student Opportunity Act — Evidence-Based Practice Grant

Fund Codes: 117/225B


The purpose of this three-year combined state and trust funded competitive grant is to address persistent disparities in achievement among specific student groups, improve educational opportunities for all students, share best practices for improving classroom learning and support efficiencies within and across school districts (Student Opportunity Act, 21st Century Education Program, Section 16A).


With an emphasis on improving equity and closing gaps, this competitive grant prioritizes the adoption of evidence-based programs that have proven to improve educational opportunities for all students. This grant will support the development or enhancement of district efforts to implement the following Evidence-Based Program (EBP) areas:

  1. Co-teaching / inclusion for students with disabilities and English learners
  2. Research-based early literacy programs in pre-kindergarten and early elementary grades
  3. Strategies to recruit and retain educators/administrators in hard-to-staff schools and positions,
  4. Implement Expanded Learning Time (ELT) in the form of a longer school day or year

Support effective implementation of a particular district-determined EBP (see description of DESE's Evidence-Based Program Areas document). See Appendix A in the RFP for recommended strategies related to these evidence-based programs.

Priority will be given to:

  1. Districts and schools in chronically underperforming status,
  2. Districts serving ≥ (at least) 25 percent of students who are identified as low-income as indicated at the Department's School and District profiles page or through other documented evidence,
  3. Eligible districts in the Commonwealth receiving rural school aid, and
  4. Districts with an increase in Chapter 70 funding up to, but not above $1.5 million.
  5. Applications that reflect a strong commitment to enhancing culturally and linguistically responsive instruction and establishing / strengthening systems that promote and foster equity with a particular focus on students who have been historically underserved by our education systems, including but not limited to those who identify as Black, Hispanic/Latino, Asian, Indigenous, and Multiracial students, students with disabilities, English learners, LGBTQIA+ students, students experiencing homelessness and/or financial insecurity, and students who are undocumented.

Massachusetts public school districts with FY22 SOA Plan Amendments that meet statutory requirements.

Funding Type:

State and Trust


Approximately $9,000,000 is available for schools and districts and is contingent upon availability. Districts may apply for between $50,000 - $300,000 annually per EBP, and awards will be based on the size of the district/school sites and scope of the proposed project. Due to an abbreviated FY23 timeline, awards during Year 1 are anticipated to be less than in Years 2 and 3, with full implementation FY24 and FY25

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.

Funding is provided through the Student Opportunity Act, 21st Century Education Program (SOA) and FY23 State Budget line item 7061-9412 for Expanded Learning Time.

Fund Use:

Funds may be used to support programming costs including staff salaries, stipends, staff planning time as it relates to the grant, contracts, high quality instructional materials, costs related to professional development and training activities, and other expenses associated with implementing grant funded programming.

Unallowable Expenditures:
Out-of-State travel, food, overhead or other facilities costs, current transportation costs or other currently funded costs, or any expenditures not directly related to grant activities.

Project Duration:

Upon Approval through 6/30/2023, with annual renewals based on approval for FY24 and FY25.

Program Unit:

Office of Effective Practices, Center for District and School Partnership


Date Due:

Thursday, January 26, 2023*

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

*All responses must be received by the due date listed above. Failure to do so will result in disqualification. Responses not submitted on time will not be reviewed. Applicants applying after the due date may be notified their application was received late and will not be reviewed. Applications must be submitted as directed in the Submissions Instructions below. Failure to do so may result in disqualification. If you need assistance with submitting your application, please reach out to the contact person listed on this funding opportunity.

Required Forms:
Additional Information:
  • Appendix A: Evidence-Based Program descriptions, guidance, and prioritized strategies for grant use can be found in Appendix A.

  • Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ): Additional information and answers to potential questions can be found in the FAQ document.

Questions and Information Webinar: Due to the competitive nature of this grant program, all questions regarding this funding opportunity must be submitted in writing via email to no later than Wednesday December 28, 2022. Questions and Answers (Q&A) will be compiled and posted publicly for all applicants to reference. Additional questions will be addressed during the Grant Information Webinar and Q&A session which will be hosted on December 22, 2022 at the following Zoom link:

Topic: Webinar — FY23 Evidence Based Program Grant
Time: Dec 22, 2022 at 3:30 PM Eastern Time (US and Canada)

Erica Champagne is inviting you to a scheduled Zoom meeting.

Topic: EBP Grant Webinar
Time: Dec 22, 2022 03:30 PM Eastern Time (US and Canada)

Join Zoom Meeting

Meeting ID: 856 9578 4331
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+13052241968,,85695784331# US
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Also, please reference the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) document attached to this RFP and the document entitled "Appendix A".

Submission Instructions:

The following documents must be submitted no later than 5:00 p.m. Eastern on Thursday, January 26, 2023 via email to :

Part I — General — Program Unit Signature Page — (Standard Contract Form and Application for Program Grants)

Part II — Budget Details

Part III — Required Program Information (Submission Narrative)

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.

Last Updated: December 29, 2022

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Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education
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