[Federal Register Volume 76, Number 221 (Wednesday, November 16, 2011)]
[Notices]
[Pages 70980-70984]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2011-29582]


=======================================================================
-----------------------------------------------------------------------

DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION


Applications for New Awards; Race to the Top Fund Phase 3

AGENCY: Office of the Deputy Secretary, Department of Education

ACTION: Notice.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

Overview Information

Race to the Top Fund Phase 3

    Notice inviting applications for new awards for fiscal year (FY) 
2011.

Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) Number: 84.395A.

DATES: Applications Available: November 16, 2011.
    Date of Meetings for Prospective Applicants: November 16, 2011.
    Deadline for Transmittal of Part I Applications: November 22, 2011, 
4:30:00 p.m., Washington, DC time.
    Deadline for Transmittal of Part II Applications: December 16, 
2011, 4:30:00 p.m., Washington, DC time.

Full Text of Announcement

I. Funding Opportunity Description

    Purpose of Program: The Race to the Top program, the largest 
competitive education grant program in U.S. history, is designed to 
provide incentives to States to implement system-changing reforms that 
result in improved student achievement, narrowed achievement gaps, and 
increased high school graduation and college enrollment rates.
    On April 15, 2011, President Obama signed into law Public Law 112-
10, the Department of Defense and Full-Year Continuing Appropriations 
Act, 2011 (FY 2011 Appropriations Act), which made $698.6 million 
available for the Race to the Top Fund, authorized the Secretary to 
make awards on ``the basis of previously submitted applications,'' and 
amended the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA) to 
permit the Secretary to make grants for improving early childhood care 
and learning under the program. On May 25, 2011, the Department 
announced that

[[Page 70981]]

approximately $500 million of these funds would support the new Race to 
the Top--Early Learning Challenge program and that approximately $200 
million would be made available to some or all of the nine unfunded 
finalists from the 2010 Race to the Top Phase 2 competition. While $200 
million is not sufficient to support full implementation of the plans 
submitted during the Phase 2 competition, the Department believes that 
making these funds available to the remaining nine finalists is the 
best way to reward these States for the ambitious reforms they have 
begun and enable them to carry out meaningful portions of the plans 
proposed in their applications. The Department may use any unused funds 
from Race to the Top Phase 3 to make awards in the Race to the Top--
Early Learning Challenge program. Conversely, the Department may use 
any unused funds from the Race to the Top--Early Learning Challenge 
program to make awards for Race to the Top Phase 3.
    Requirements: Except where otherwise indicated in this notice 
inviting applications or in the notice of final requirements for the 
Race to the Top Phase 3 program, published elsewhere in this issue of 
the Federal Register, the applicable final requirements and definitions 
of key terms from the notice of final priorities, requirements, 
definitions, and selection criteria, published in the Federal Register 
on November 18, 2009 (74 FR 59688), apply to the Race to the Top Phase 
3 application process.
    The following application requirements are from the Race to the Top 
Phase 3 notice of final requirements published elsewhere in this issue 
of the Federal Register and apply to this program.
    Award Process: The Department will make awards through a two-part 
application process. States that meet the eligibility requirements must 
submit Part I of the application. Part I must meet the requirements in 
part A of the Application Requirements section and provide the required 
assurances in the Application Assurances section.
    The Department will notify eligible applicants that met the 
application requirements and provided the required application 
assurances, and it will provide an estimate of the Race to the Top 
Phase 3 funds available to each based on the number of qualified 
applicants.
    Qualified applicants then must submit Part II of the application 
for review and approval by the Secretary. Part II must meet the 
requirements in Part B of the Application Requirements section. It must 
also include a detailed plan and budget describing the activities 
selected from the State's Race to the Top Phase 2 application that will 
be implemented with Race to the Top Phase 3 funding in accordance with 
the budget requirements in the Race to the Top Phase 3 notice of final 
requirements published elsewhere in this issue of the Federal Register 
and repeated in the Budget Requirements section in this notice.
    Eligibility Requirements: States that were finalists, but did not 
receive grant awards, in the 2010 Race to the Top Phase 2 competition 
are eligible to receive Race to the Top Phase 3 awards. Therefore, only 
the States of Arizona, California, Colorado, Illinois, Kentucky, 
Louisiana, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and South Carolina are eligible to 
apply for Race to the Top Phase 3 awards.
    Application Requirements: To receive Race to the Top Phase 3 
funding, an eligible applicant must meet two application requirements:
    A. In Part I of the application, a State must submit the signatures 
of the Governor, the State's chief school officer, and the president of 
the State board of education, or their authorized representatives.
    B. In Part II of the application, a State must include performance 
measures, by sub-criteria, for any activities selected for funding 
under Race to the Top Phase 3 for which such measures were not included 
in the State's Phase 2 application.
    Application Assurances: The Governor (or the Governor's authorized 
representative) must provide the following assurances in the State's 
Race to the Top Phase 3 application:
    (a) The State is in compliance with the Education Jobs Fund 
maintenance-of-effort requirements in section 101(10)(A) of Public Law 
111-226.
    (b) The State is in compliance with the State Fiscal Stabilization 
Fund Phase 2 requirements with respect to Indicator (b)(1) regarding 
the State's statewide longitudinal data system. (See notice of final 
requirements, definitions, and approval criteria for the State Fiscal 
Stabilization Fund Program published in the Federal Register on 
November 12, 2009 (74 FR 58436)), and the interim final requirement and 
request for comments for the State Fiscal Stabilization Fund Program 
published in the Federal Register on September 23, 2011 (76 FR 59036).
    (c) At the time the State submits its application, there are no 
legal, statutory, or regulatory barriers at the State level to linking 
data on student achievement or student growth to teachers and 
principals for the purpose of teacher and principal evaluation.
    (d) The State will maintain its commitment to improving the quality 
of its assessments, evidenced by the State's participation in a 
consortium of States that--
    (i) Is working toward jointly developing and implementing common, 
high-quality assessments aligned with a common set of K-12 standards 
that prepare students for college and careers; and
    (ii) Includes a significant number of States.
    (e) The State will maintain, at a minimum, the conditions for 
reform described in its Race to the Top Phase 2 application, 
including--
    (i) The State's adoption and implementation of a common set of K-12 
standards that prepare students for college and careers, as specified 
in section (B)(1)(ii) of the State's Race to the Top Phase 2 
application;
    (ii) The State's statutory and regulatory framework related to 
improving teacher and school leader effectiveness and ensuring an 
equitable distribution of effective teachers and leaders, as described 
in section D of the State's Race to the Top Phase 2 application;
    (iii) The State's statutory and regulatory framework for 
implementing effective school and LEA turnaround measures, as described 
in section E of the State's Race to the Top Phase 2 application; and
    (iv) The State's statutory and regulatory framework for supporting 
the creation and expansion of high-performing charter schools and other 
innovative schools, as described in section (F)(2) of its Race to the 
Top Phase 2 application.
    (f) The State will maintain its commitment to comprehensive reforms 
and innovation designed to increase student achievement and to 
continued progress in the four reform areas specified in the ARRA, 
including the adoption and implementation of college and career-ready 
standards and high-quality assessments, improving the collection and 
use of data, increasing teacher effectiveness and equity in the 
distribution of effective teachers, and turning around the State's 
lowest achieving schools.
    (g) The State will select activities for funding that are 
consistent with the commitment to comprehensive reform and innovation 
that the State demonstrated in its Race to the Top Phase 2 application, 
including activities that are most likely to improve science, 
technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) education.

[[Page 70982]]

    (h) The State will comply with all of the accountability, 
transparency, and reporting requirements that apply to the Race to the 
Top program (See the notice of final priorities, requirements, 
definitions, and selection criteria for the Race to the Top Fund 
published in the Federal Register on November 18, 2009 (74 FR 59688)), 
with the exception of reporting requirements applicable solely to funds 
provided under the ARRA. (Note: The ARRA section 1512 reporting 
requirements do not apply to the funds we will award under the Race to 
the Top Phase 3 award process).
    (i) The State will comply with the requirements of any evaluation 
of the program, or of specific activities pursued as part of the 
program, conducted and supported by the Department.
    Budget Requirements: An eligible applicant must apply for a 
proportional share of the approximately $200 million available for Race 
to the Top Phase 3 awards based primarily on its share of the 
population of children ages 5 through 17 across the nine States. The 
estimated amounts for which each eligible State could apply are shown 
in the following table. The amounts provided in this table are based on 
the assumption that all eligible States will apply for a share of 
available funding; the amounts will increase if one or more eligible 
States do not apply or do not meet the application requirements.

------------------------------------------------------------------------
                          State                               Amount
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Colorado................................................     $12,250,000
Louisiana...............................................      12,250,000
South Carolina..........................................      12,250,000
Kentucky................................................      12,250,000
Arizona.................................................      17,500,000
Illinois................................................      28,000,000
Pennsylvania............................................      28,000,000
New Jersey..............................................      28,000,000
California..............................................      49,000,000
------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Once the Department notifies an applicant of the final amount of 
funds it is eligible to receive, the applicant must submit a Part II 
application that includes a detailed plan and budget. The plan and 
budget must describe the activities the applicant has selected from its 
Race to the Top Phase 2 application that it proposes to implement with 
Race to the Top Phase 3 funding, including how the State will allocate 
a meaningful share of its Phase 3 award to advance STEM education in 
the State.
    The plan and budget must also provide--
    (a) An explanation of why the applicant has selected these 
activities; and
    (b) An explanation of why the applicant believes these activities 
will have the greatest impact on advancing its overall statewide reform 
plan.
    Program Authority: American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, 
Division A, Section 14006, Public Law 111-5, as amended by section 310 
of Division D, Title III of Public Law 111-117, the Consolidated 
Appropriations Act, 2010, and section 1832(a)(2) of Public Law 112-10, 
the Department of Defense and Full-Year Continuing Appropriations Act, 
2011. (Note: In the ARRA, the Race to the Top program is referred to as 
``State Incentive Grants.'')
    Applicable Regulations: (a) The Education Department General 
Administrative Regulations (EDGAR) in 34 CFR parts 74, 75, 77, 79, 80, 
81, 82, 84, 85, 97, 98, and 99. (b) The notice of final requirements 
for the Race to the Top Phase 3 program published elsewhere in this 
issue of the Federal Register. (c) The notice of final priorities, 
requirements, definitions, and selection criteria, published in the 
Federal Register on November 18, 2009 (74 FR 59688).

II. Award Information

    Type of Award: Discretionary grants.
    Estimated Available Funds: $200,000,000.
    Estimated Range of Awards: $12,250,000-$49,000,000.
    Estimated Average Size of Awards: $22,000,000.
    Maximum Award: Up to $200,000,000, depending on the number of 
applicants.
    Estimated Number of Awards: Up to nine.

    Note: The Department is not bound by any estimates in this 
notice.

    Project Period: Up to 48 months.

III. Eligibility Information

    1. Eligible Applicants: States that were finalists, but did not 
receive grant awards, in the 2010 Race to the Top Phase 2 competition 
are eligible to receive Race to the Top Phase 3 awards. Therefore, only 
the States of Arizona, California, Colorado, Illinois, Kentucky, 
Louisiana, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and South Carolina are eligible to 
apply for Race to the Top Phase 3 awards.
    2. Cost Sharing or Matching: This program does not require cost 
sharing or matching.

IV. Application and Submission Information

    1. Address to Request Application Package: The Race to the Top 
Phase 3 application is divided into two parts--Part I and Part II. In 
Part I of the application, the applicant provides the required 
signatures and assurances. In Part II of the application, the applicant 
provides its Race to the Top Phase 3 plan, budget, and performance 
measure information.
    An applicant may obtain Part I and Part II of the application 
package via the Internet, using the following address: http://www2.ed.gov/programs/racetothetop/phase3-resources.html. Alternatively, 
an applicant may obtain Part I of the application package by 
contacting: Meredith Farace, U.S. Department of Education, 400 Maryland 
Avenue SW., room 7E208, Washington, DC 20202-0200, (202) 453-6690.
    2. Content and Form of Application Submission:
    Requirements concerning the content of the application, together 
with the forms a State must submit, are in the application package for 
this program. For information about how to submit your application by 
mail or hand delivery, please refer to 7. Other Submission Requirements 
in this section.
    3. Submission Dates and Times:
    Applications Available: November 16, 2011. Date of Meetings for 
Prospective Applicants: November 16, 2011.
    To assist prospective applicants in preparing an application and to 
respond to questions, the Department will host a Webinar for 
prospective applicants on November 16, 2011. Detailed information about 
this Webinar will be posted on the Department's Web site at http://www2.ed.gov/programs/racetothetop/phase3-resources.html. Announcements 
of any other technical assistance opportunities for prospective 
applicants will also be available at this Web site.
    Deadline for Transmittal of Part I Applications: November 22, 2011, 
4:30 p.m., Washington, DC time.
    Deadline for Transmittal of Part II Applications: December 16, 
2011, 4:30 p.m., Washington, DC time.
    The Department will not consider an application that does not 
comply with the deadline requirements.
    Individuals with disabilities who need an accommodation or 
auxiliary aid in connection with the application process should contact 
the person listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT in section VII 
of this notice. If the Department provides an accommodation or 
auxiliary aid to an individual with a disability in connection with the 
application process, the individual's application remains subject to 
all other requirements and limitations in this notice.

[[Page 70983]]

    4. Intergovernmental Review: This program is subject to Executive 
Order 12372 and the regulations in 34 CFR part 79. Information about 
Intergovernmental Review of Federal Programs under Executive Order 
12372 is in the application package for this program.
    5. Funding Restrictions: We reference regulations outlining funding 
restrictions in the Applicable Regulations section of this notice.
    6. Data Universal Numbering System Number, Taxpayer Identification 
Number, and Central Contractor Registry: To do business with the 
Department of Education, you must--
    a. Have a Data Universal Numbering System (DUNS) number and a 
Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN);
    b. Register both your DUNS number and TIN with the Central 
Contractor Registry (CCR), the Government's primary registrant 
database;
    c. Provide your DUNS number and TIN on your application; and
    d. Maintain an active CCR registration with current information 
while your application is under review by the Department and, if you 
are awarded a grant, during the project period.
    You can obtain a DUNS number from Dun and Bradstreet. A DUNS number 
can be created within one business day.
    If you are a corporate entity, agency, institution, or 
organization, you can obtain a TIN from the Internal Revenue Service. 
If you are an individual, you can obtain a TIN from the Internal 
Revenue Service or the Social Security Administration. If you need a 
new TIN, please allow 2-5 weeks for your TIN to become active.
    The CCR registration process may take five or more business days to 
complete. If you are currently registered with the CCR, you may not 
need to make any changes. However, please make certain that the TIN 
associated with your DUNS number is correct. Also note that you will 
need to update your CCR registration on an annual basis. This may take 
three or more business days to complete.
    7. Other Submission Requirements: Applications for grants under 
this program must be submitted by mail or hand delivery. We strongly 
recommend the use of overnight mail.

a. Application Submission Format and Deadline

    Applications for grants under this program must be submitted in 
electronic format on a CD or DVD, with CD-ROM or DVD-ROM preferred. In 
addition, applicants must submit a signed paper original of Part I of 
the application and one copy of that signed original. Autopenned or 
faxed signature pages, photocopies, and .PDFs (Adobe Portable Document 
Format) are not acceptable originals. Part I of the application 
includes the Application Assurances and Certifications.
    We strongly recommend the applicant to submit a CD or DVD of its 
application that includes the following files:
    (1) A single file that contains the body of the application, 
including required budget tables, that has been converted into a .PDF 
format so that the .PDF is searchable. Note that a .PDF created from a 
scanned document will not be searchable.
    (2) A single file in a .PDF format that contains all of the 
required signature pages. The signature pages may be scanned and turned 
into a PDF.
    (3) Copies of the completed electronic budget spreadsheets with the 
required budget tables, which should be in a separate file from the 
body of the application. The spreadsheets will be used by the 
Departments for budget reviews.
    Each of these items must be clearly labeled with the State's name 
and any other relevant identifying information. States must not 
password-protect these files.
    We must receive all grant applications by 4:30 p.m., Washington, DC 
time, on the application deadline date. We will not accept an 
application for this program after 4:30 p.m., Washington, DC time, on 
the application deadline date. Therefore, we strongly recommend that 
applicants arrange for mailing or hand delivery of their application in 
advance of the application deadline date.

b. Submission of Applications by Mail

    If you submit your application (i.e., the CD or DVD, the signed 
paper original of Part I of the application, and the copy of that 
original) by mail (through the U.S. Postal Service or a commercial 
carrier), you must mail the original and two copies of your 
application, on or before the application deadline date, to the 
Department at the following address: U.S. Department of Education, 
Application Control Center, Attention: CFDA Number 84.395A, LBJ 
Basement Level 1, 400 Maryland Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20202-4260.

c. Submission of Applications by Hand Delivery

    If you submit your application (i.e., the CD or DVD, the signed 
paper original of Part I the application, and the copy of that 
original) by hand delivery, you (or a courier service) must deliver the 
original and two copies of your application by hand, on or before the 
application deadline date, to the Department at the following address: 
U.S. Department of Education, Application Control Center, Attention: 
CFDA Number 84.395A, 550 12th Street SW., Room 7041, Potomac Center 
Plaza, Washington, DC 20202-4260.
    The Application Control Center accepts hand deliveries daily 
between 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m., Washington, DC time, except Saturdays, 
Sundays, and Federal holidays.

    Note for Mail or Hand Delivery of Paper Applications: If you 
mail or hand deliver your application to the Department--
    (1) You must indicate on the envelope and--if not provided by 
the Department--in Item 11 of the SF 424 the CFDA number, including 
suffix letter, if any, of the program under which you are submitting 
your application; and
    (2) The Application Control Center will mail to you a 
notification of receipt of your grant application. If you do not 
receive this notification within 15 business days from the 
application deadline date, you should call the U.S. Department of 
Education Application Control Center at (202) 245-6288.

V. Application Review Information

    1. Selection Criteria: The Race to the Top program selection 
criteria, published in the Federal Register on November 18, 2009 (74 FR 
59688) apply to the Race to the Top Phase 3 application process.
    2. Review and Selection Process: The Department will make awards 
through a two-part application process. States that meet the 
eligibility requirements must submit Part I of the application. Part I 
must meet the requirements in Part A of the Application Requirements 
section and provide the required assurances in the Application 
Assurances section.
    The Department will notify eligible applicants that met the 
application requirements and provided the required application 
assurances, and it will provide an estimate of the Race to the Top 
Phase 3 funds available to each based on the number of qualified 
applicants.
    Qualified applicants then must submit Part II of the application 
for review and approval by the Secretary. Part II must meet the 
requirements in Part B of the Application Requirements section. It must 
also include a detailed plan and budget describing the activities 
selected from the State's Race to the Top Phase 2 application that will 
be implemented with Race to the Top Phase 3 funding in accordance with 
the budget requirements in the Race to the Top Phase 3 notice of final 
requirements published elsewhere in this issue of the Federal Register 
and repeated in the

[[Page 70984]]

Budget Requirements section in this notice.
    We remind potential applicants that in reviewing applications in 
any discretionary grant program, the Secretary may consider, under 34 
CFR 75.217(d)(3), the past performance of the applicant in carrying out 
a previous award, such as the applicant's use of funds, achievement of 
project objectives, and compliance with grant conditions. The Secretary 
may also consider whether the applicant failed to submit a timely 
performance report or submitted a report of unacceptable quality.
    In addition, in making a competitive grant award, the Secretary 
also requires various assurances including those applicable to Federal 
civil rights laws that prohibit discrimination in programs or 
activities receiving Federal financial assistance from the Department 
of Education (34 CFR 100.4, 104.5, 106.4, 108.8, and 110.23).
    3. Special Conditions: Under 34 CFR 74.14 and 80.12, the Secretary 
may impose special conditions on a grant if the applicant or grantee is 
not financially stable; has a history of unsatisfactory performance; 
has a financial or other management system that does not meet the 
standards in 34 CFR parts 74 or 80, as applicable; has not fulfilled 
the conditions of a prior grant; or is otherwise not responsible.

VI. Award Administration Information

    1. Award Notices: If your application is successful, we notify your 
U.S. Representative and U.S. Senators and send you a Grant Award 
Notification (GAN). We may notify you informally, also.
    If your application is not evaluated or not selected for funding, 
we notify you.
    2. Administrative and National Policy Requirements: We identify 
administrative and national policy requirements in the application 
package and reference these and other requirements in the Applicable 
Regulations section of this notice.
    We reference the regulations outlining the terms and conditions of 
an award in the Applicable Regulations section of this notice and 
include these and other specific conditions in the GAN. The GAN also 
incorporates your approved application as part of your binding 
commitments under the grant.
    3. Reporting: The Race to the Top reporting requirements, published 
in the Federal Register on November 18, 2009 (74 FR 59688) apply to the 
Race to the Top Phase 3 application process.
    4. Performance Measures: The Race to the Top Phase 1 and Phase 2 
performance measures, published in the Federal Register on November 18, 
2009, (74 FR 59688), apply to the Race to the Top Phase 3 program. In 
addition, as indicated in the Race to the Top Phase 3 application 
requirements, applicants must develop and propose for the Department's 
approval, performance measures for sub-criteria that do not have 
performance measures in the Race to the Top Phase 2 application.

VII. Agency Contact

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Meredith Farace, Implementation and 
Support Unit, U.S. Department of Education, 400 Maryland Avenue SW., 
room 7E208, Washington, DC 20202-0200. Telephone: (202) 453-6690 or by 
email: phase3comments@ed.gov.
    If you use a TDD, call the FRS, toll free, at 1-(800) 877-8339.

VIII. Other Information

    Accessible Format: Individuals with disabilities can obtain this 
document and a copy of the application package in an accessible format 
(e.g., braille, large print, audiotape, or compact disc) on request to 
the contact person listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT in 
section VII of this notice.
    Electronic Access to This Document: The official version of this 
document is the document published in the Federal Register. Free 
Internet access to the official edition of the Federal Register and the 
Code of Federal Regulations is available via the Federal Digital System 
at: http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys. At this site you can view this document, 
as well as all other documents of this Department published in the 
Federal Register, in text or Adobe Portable Document Format (PDF). To 
use PDF you must have Adobe Acrobat Reader, which is available free at 
the site. You may also access documents of the Department published in 
the Federal Register by using the article search feature at: http://www.federalregister.gov. Specifically, through the advanced search 
feature at this site, you can limit your search to documents published 
by the Department.

    Dated: November 9, 2011.
Arne Duncan,
Secretary of Education.
[FR Doc. 2011-29582 Filed 11-15-11; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4000-01-P