[Federal Register Volume 77, Number 149 (Thursday, August 2, 2012)]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2012-18918]
DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION
Applications for New Awards; State Personnel Development Grants
AGENCY: Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services,
Department of Education.
State Personnel Development Grants (SPDG) Program
Notice Inviting Applications for New Awards for Fiscal Year (FY) 2012.
Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) Number: 84.323A.
Applications Available: August 2, 2012.
Deadline for Transmittal of Applications: September 4, 2012.
Full Text of Announcement
I. Funding Opportunity Description
Purpose of Program: The purpose of this program, authorized by the
Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), is to assist State
educational agencies (SEAs) in reforming and improving their systems
for personnel preparation and professional development in early
intervention, educational, and transition services in order to improve
results for children with disabilities.
Priorities: This notice contains two absolute priorities and one
competitive preference priority.
Absolute Priorities: Priority 1 is from the notice of final
priorities and definitions for this program, published elsewhere in
this issue of the Federal Register. In accordance with 34 CFR
75.105(b)(2)(iv), Priority 2 is from sections 651 through 655 of IDEA.
For FY 2012 and any subsequent year in which we make awards from
the list of unfunded applicants from this competition, these priorities
are absolute priorities. Under 34 CFR 75.105(c)(3), we consider only
applications that meet both of these priorities.
These priorities are:
Priority 1--Effective and Efficient Delivery of Professional
The Assistant Secretary for Special Education and Rehabilitative
Services establishes a priority to assist SEAs in reforming and
improving their systems for personnel (as that term is defined in
section 651(b) of IDEA) preparation and professional development of
individuals providing early intervention, educational, and transition
services in order to improve results for children with disabilities.
In order to meet this priority an applicant must demonstrate in the
SPDG State Plan it submits as part of its application under section
653(a)(2) of IDEA that its proposed project will--
(1) Use evidence-based (as defined in this notice) professional
development practices that will increase implementation of evidence-
based practices and result in improved outcomes for children with
(2) Provide ongoing assistance to personnel receiving SPDG-
supported professional development that supports the implementation of
evidence-based practices with fidelity (as defined in this notice); and
(3) Use technology to more efficiently and effectively provide
ongoing professional development to personnel, including to personnel
in rural areas and to other populations, such as personnel in urban or
high-need local educational agencies (LEAs) (as defined in this
Absolute Priority 2--State Personnel Development Grants.
Statutory Requirements. To meet this priority, an applicant must
meet the following statutory requirements:
1. State Personnel Development Plan.
An applicant must submit a State Personnel Development Plan that
identifies and addresses the State and local needs for the personnel
preparation and professional development of personnel, as well as
individuals who provide direct supplementary aids and services to
children with disabilities, and that--
(a) Is designed to enable the State to meet the requirements of
section 612(a)(14) and section 635(a)(8) and (9) of IDEA;
(b) Is based on an assessment of State and local needs that
identifies critical aspects and areas in need of improvement related to
the preparation, ongoing training, and professional development of
personnel who serve infants, toddlers, preschoolers, and children with
disabilities within the State, including--
(1) Current and anticipated personnel vacancies and shortages; and
(2) The number of preservice and inservice programs;
(c) Is integrated and aligned, to the maximum extent possible, with
State plans and activities under the Elementary and Secondary Education
Act of 1965, as amended (ESEA); the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as
amended; and the Higher Education Act of 1965, as amended (HEA);
(d) Describes a partnership agreement that is in effect for the
period of the grant, which agreement must specify--
(1) The nature and extent of the partnership described in
accordance with section 652(b) of IDEA and the respective roles of each
member of the partnership, including, if applicable, an individual,
entity, or agency other than the SEA that has the responsibility under
State law for teacher preparation and certification; and
(2) How the SEA will work with other persons and organizations
involved in, and concerned with, the education of children with
disabilities, including the respective roles of each of the persons and
(e) Describes how the strategies and activities the SEA uses to
address identified professional development and personnel needs will be
coordinated with activities supported with other public resources
(including funds provided under Part B and Part C of IDEA and retained
for use at the State level for personnel and professional development
purposes) and private resources;
(f) Describes how the SEA will align its personnel development plan
with the plan and application submitted under sections 1111 and 2112,
respectively, of the ESEA;
(g) Describes strategies the SEA will use to address the identified
professional development and personnel needs and how such
strategies will be implemented, including--
(1) A description of the programs and activities that will provide
personnel with the knowledge and skills to meet the needs of, and
improve the performance and achievement of, infants, toddlers,
preschoolers, and children with disabilities; and
(2) How such strategies will be integrated, to the maximum extent
possible, with other activities supported by grants funded under
section 662 of IDEA;
(h) Provides an assurance that the SEA will provide technical
assistance to LEAs to improve the quality of professional development
available to meet the needs of personnel who serve children with
(i) Provides an assurance that the SEA will provide technical
assistance to entities that provide services to infants and toddlers
with disabilities to improve the quality of professional development
available to meet the needs of personnel serving those children;
(j) Describes how the SEA will recruit and retain highly qualified
teachers and other qualified personnel in geographic areas of greatest
(k) Describes the steps the SEA will take to ensure that poor and
minority children are not taught at higher rates by teachers who are
not highly qualified; and
(l) Describes how the SEA will assess, on a regular basis, the
extent to which the strategies implemented have been effective in
meeting the performance goals described in section 612(a)(15) of IDEA.
Applicants must establish a partnership with LEAs and other State
agencies involved in, or concerned with, the education of children with
(a) Not less than one institution of higher education; and
(b) The State agencies responsible for administering Part C of
IDEA, early education, child care, and vocational rehabilitation
An SEA must work in partnership with other persons and
organizations involved in, and concerned with, the education of
children with disabilities, which may include:
(a) The Governor;
(b) Parents of children with disabilities ages birth through 26;
(c) Parents of nondisabled children ages birth through 26;
(d) Individuals with disabilities;
(e) Parent training and information centers or community parent
resource centers funded under sections 671 and 672 of IDEA,
(f) Community-based and other nonprofit organizations involved in
the education and employment of individuals with disabilities;
(g) Personnel as defined in section 651(b) of IDEA;
(h) The State advisory panel established under Part B of IDEA;
(i) The State interagency coordinating council established under
Part C of IDEA;
(j) Individuals knowledgeable about vocational education;
(k) The State agency for higher education;
(l) Public agencies with jurisdiction in the areas of health,
mental health, social services, and juvenile justice;
(m) Other providers of professional development that work with
infants, toddlers, preschoolers, and children with disabilities;
(n) Other individuals; and
(o) An individual, entity, or agency as a partner in accordance
with section 652(b)(3) of IDEA, if State law assigns responsibility for
teacher preparation and certification to an individual, entity, or
agency other than the SEA.
3. Use of Funds.
(a) Professional Development Activities--Each SEA that receives a
grant under this program must use the grant funds to support activities
in accordance with the State's Personnel Development Plan, including
one or more of the following:
(1) Carrying out programs that provide support to both special
education and regular education teachers of children with disabilities
and principals, such as programs that--
(i) Provide teacher mentoring, team teaching, reduced class
schedules and case loads, and intensive professional development;
(ii) Use standards or assessments for guiding beginning teachers
that are consistent with challenging State student academic achievement
and functional standards and with the requirements for professional
development, as defined in section 9101 of the ESEA; and
(iii) Encourage collaborative and consultative models of providing
early intervention, special education, and related services.
(2) Encouraging and supporting the training of special education
and regular education teachers and administrators to effectively use
and integrate technology--
(i) Into curricula and instruction, including training to improve
the ability to collect, manage, and analyze data to improve teaching,
decision-making, school improvement efforts, and accountability;
(ii) To enhance learning by children with disabilities; and
(iii) To effectively communicate with parents.
(3) Providing professional development activities that--
(i) Improve the knowledge of special education and regular
education teachers concerning--
(A) The academic and developmental or functional needs of students
with disabilities; or
(B) Effective instructional strategies, methods, and skills, and
the use of State academic content standards and student academic
achievement and functional standards, and State assessments, to improve
teaching practices and student academic achievement;
(ii) Improve the knowledge of special education and regular
education teachers and principals and, in appropriate cases,
paraprofessionals, concerning effective instructional practices, and
(A) Provide training in how to teach and address the needs of
children with different learning styles and children who are limited
(B) Involve collaborative groups of teachers, administrators, and,
in appropriate cases, related services personnel;
(C) Provide training in methods of--
(I) Positive behavioral interventions and supports to improve
student behavior in the classroom;
(II) Scientifically based reading instruction, including early
(III) Early and appropriate interventions to identify and help
children with disabilities;
(IV) Effective instruction for children with low-incidence
(V) Successful transitioning to postsecondary opportunities; and
(VI) Classroom-based techniques to assist children prior to
referral for special education;
(D) Provide training to enable personnel to work with and involve
parents in their child's education, including parents of low income and
limited English proficient children with disabilities;
(E) Provide training for special education personnel and regular
education personnel in planning, developing, and implementing effective
and appropriate individualized education programs (IEPs); and
(F) Provide training to meet the needs of students with significant
health, mobility, or behavioral needs prior to serving those students;
(iii) Train administrators, principals, and other relevant school
personnel in conducting effective IEP meetings; and
(iv) Train early intervention, preschool, and related services
providers, and other relevant school personnel in conducting effective
individualized family service plan (IFSP) meetings.
(4) Developing and implementing initiatives to promote the
recruitment and retention of highly qualified special education
teachers, particularly initiatives that have proven effective in
recruiting and retaining highly qualified teachers, including programs
(i) Teacher mentoring from exemplary special education teachers,
principals, or superintendents;
(ii) Induction and support for special education teachers during
their first three years of employment as teachers; or
(iii) Incentives, including financial incentives, to retain special
education teachers who have a record of success in helping students
(5) Carrying out programs and activities that are designed to
improve the quality of personnel who serve children with disabilities,
(i) Innovative professional development programs (which may be
provided through partnerships that include institutions of higher
education), including programs that train teachers and principals to
integrate technology into curricula and instruction to improve
teaching, learning, and technology literacy and that are consistent
with the definition of professional development in section 9101 of the
(ii) The development and use of proven, cost effective strategies
for the implementation of professional development activities, such as
through the use of technology and distance learning.
(6) Carrying out programs and activities that are designed to
improve the quality of early intervention personnel, including
paraprofessionals and primary referral sources, such as--
(i) Professional development programs to improve the delivery of
early intervention services;
(ii) Initiatives to promote the recruitment and retention of early
intervention personnel; and
(ii) Initiatives to promote the recruitment and retention of early
intervention personnel; and
(iii) Interagency activities to ensure that early intervention
personnel are adequately prepared and trained.
(b) Other Activities--Each SEA that receives a grant under this
program must use the grant funds to support activities in accordance
with the State's Personnel Development Plan, including one or more of
(1) Reforming special education and regular education teacher
certification (including re-certification) or licensing requirements to
(i) Special education and regular education teachers have--
(A) The training and information necessary to address the full
range of needs of children with disabilities across disability
(B) The necessary subject matter knowledge and teaching skills in
the academic subjects that the teachers teach;
(ii) Special education and regular education teacher certification
(including re-certification) or licensing requirements are aligned with
challenging State academic content standards; and
(iii) Special education and regular education teachers have the
subject matter knowledge and teaching skills, including technology
literacy, necessary to help students with disabilities meet challenging
State student academic achievement and functional standards.
(2) Programs that establish, expand, or improve alternative routes
for State certification of special education teachers for highly
qualified individuals with a baccalaureate or master's degree,
including mid-career professionals from other occupations,
paraprofessionals, and recent college or university graduates with
records of academic distinction who demonstrate the potential to become
highly effective special education teachers.
(3) Teacher advancement initiatives for special education teachers
that promote professional growth and emphasize multiple career paths
(such as paths to becoming a career teacher, mentor teacher, or
exemplary teacher) and pay differentiation.
(4) Developing and implementing mechanisms to assist LEAs and
schools in effectively recruiting and retaining highly qualified
special education teachers.
(5) Reforming tenure systems, implementing teacher testing for
subject matter knowledge, and implementing teacher testing for State
certification or licensure, consistent with title II of the HEA (20
U.S.C. 1021 et seq.).
(6) Funding projects to promote reciprocity of teacher
certification or licensing between or among States for special
education teachers, except that no reciprocity agreement developed
under this absolute priority may lead to the weakening of any State
teacher certification or licensing requirement.
(7) Assisting LEAs to serve children with disabilities through the
development and use of proven, innovative strategies to deliver
intensive professional development programs that are both cost
effective and easily accessible, such as strategies that involve
delivery through the use of technology, peer networks, and distance
(8) Developing, or assisting LEAs in developing, merit-based
performance systems and strategies that provide differential and bonus
pay for special education teachers.
(9) Supporting activities that ensure that teachers are able to use
challenging State academic content standards and student academic
achievement and functional standards, and State assessments for all
children with disabilities, to improve instructional practices and
improve the academic achievement of children with disabilities.
(10) When applicable, coordinating with, and expanding centers
established under section 2113(c)(18) of the ESEA to benefit special
(c) Contracts and Subgrants--An SEA that receives a grant under
(1) Must award contracts or subgrants to LEAs, institutions of
higher education, parent training and information centers, or community
parent resource centers, as appropriate, to carry out the State
Personnel Development Plan; and
(2) May award contracts and subgrants to other public and private
entities, including the lead agency under Part C of IDEA, to carry out
the State plan.
(d) Use of Funds for Professional Development--An SEA that receives
a grant under this program must use--
(1) Not less than 90 percent of the funds the SEA receives under
the grant for any fiscal year for the Professional Development
Activities described in paragraph (a); and
(2) Not more than 10 percent of the funds the SEA receives under
the grant for any fiscal year for the Other Activities described in
Competitive Preference Priority: This priority is from the notice
of final priorities and definitions for this program, published
elsewhere in this issue of the Federal Register. For FY 2012 and any
subsequent year in which we make awards from the list of unfunded
applicants from this competition, this priority is a competitive
preference priority. Under 34 CFR 75.105(c)(2)(i) we award an
additional three points to an application that meets this priority. We
points on an ``all or nothing'' basis (i.e., three points or zero
points) to an applicant that addresses the competitive preference
priority in its application based on whether the applicant meets the
priority. These points are in addition to any points the application
earns under the selection criteria. To be considered for the
competitive preference, an applicant must state in its application that
it is seeking to meet this competitive preference priority.
This priority is:
Competitive Preference Priority--Targeting Teachers' Professional
Development Needs Based on Student Growth.
The Assistant Secretary establishes a priority for projects that
are designed to provide professional development targeted to meet
specific needs of teachers identified by teacher evaluation systems
that take into account student growth (as defined in this notice) as a
significant factor in determining performance levels.
To meet this priority, an applicant must include, as part of its
application, a plan describing how it will use the results of teacher
evaluation systems to identify the professional development needs of
teachers of students with disabilities to ensure that such teachers
develop the knowledge and skills required to deliver evidence-based
instruction to students with disabilities. The teacher evaluation
systems used to make these determinations must be based on student
growth in significant part, and must include students with
The plan must describe the applicant's timeline for using the
results of evaluation systems to identify the professional development
needs of teachers of students with disabilities. Under this timeline,
the applicant must begin using the evaluation system results to
identify the professional development needs of teachers of students
with disabilities no later than the beginning of the third year of the
grant's project period.
The definitions are from the notice of final priorities and
definitions for this program, published elsewhere in this issue of the
Evidence-based refers to practices for which there is strong
evidence or moderate evidence of effectiveness.
Fidelity means the delivery of instruction in the way in which it
was designed to be delivered.
High-need LEA means, in accordance with section 2102(3) of the
ESEA, an LEA--
(a) That serves not fewer than 10,000 children from families with
incomes below the poverty line (as that term is defined in section
9101(33) of the ESEA), or for which not less than 20 percent of the
children served by the LEA are from families with incomes below the
poverty line; and
(b) For which there is (1) a high percentage of teachers not
teaching in the academic subjects or grade levels that the teachers
were trained to teach, or (2) a high percentage of teachers with
emergency, provisional, or temporary certification or licensing.
Student achievement means--
(a) For tested grades and subjects: (1) a student's score on the
State's assessments under the ESEA; and, as appropriate, (2) other
measures of student learning, such as those described in paragraph (b)
of this definition, provided they are rigorous and comparable across
(b) For non-tested grades and subjects: alternative measures of
student learning and performance, such as student scores on pre-tests
and end-of-course tests; student performance on English language
proficiency assessments; and other measures of student achievement that
are rigorous and comparable across schools.
Student growth means the change in student achievement (as defined
in this notice) for an individual student between two or more points in
Program Authority: 20 U.S.C. 1451-1455.
Applicable Regulations: (a) The Education Department General
Administrative Regulations (EDGAR) in 34 CFR parts 74, 75, 77, 79, 80,
81, 82, 84, 97, 98, and 99. (b) The Education Department debarment and
suspension regulations in 2 CFR part 3485. (c) The notice of final
priorities and definitions for this program, published elsewhere in
this issue of the Federal Register.
Note: The regulations in 34 CFR part 79 apply to all applicants
except federally recognized Indian tribes.
II. Award Information
Type of Award: Discretionary grants.
Estimated Available Funds: $26,400,000
Estimated Range of Awards: $500,000--$2,200,000 (for the 50 States,
the District of Columbia, and the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico). In the
case of outlying areas (United States Virgin Islands, Guam, American
Samoa, and the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands), awards
will be not less than $80,000.
Note: We will set the amount of each award after considering--
(1) The amount of funds available for making the grants;
(2) The relative population of the State or outlying area;
(3) The types of activities proposed by the State or outlying
(4) The alignment of proposed activities with section 612(a)(14)
(5) The alignment of proposed activities with State plans and
applications submitted under sections 1111 and 2112, respectively,
of the ESEA; and
(6) The use, as appropriate, of scientifically based research
Estimated Average Size of Awards: $1,000,000 excluding the outlying
Estimated Number of Awards: 24.
Note: The Department is not bound by any estimates in this
Project Period: Not less than one year and not more than five
III. Eligibility Information
1. Eligible Applicants: An SEA of one of the 50 States, the
District of Columbia, or the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico or an outlying
area (United States Virgin Islands, Guam, American Samoa, and the
Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands).
Note: Public Law 95-134, which permits the consolidation of
grants to the outlying areas, does not apply to funds received under
2. Cost Sharing or Matching: This program does not require cost
sharing or matching.
3. Other: General Requirements--The projects funded under this
program must make positive efforts to employ and advance in employment
qualified individuals with disabilities (see section 606 of IDEA).
Additional SPDG Requirements
Projects funded under this program must:
(a) Budget for a three-day Project Directors' meeting in
Washington, DC, during each year of the project;
(b) Budget $4,000 annually for support of the State Personnel
Development Grants Program Web site currently administered by the
University of Oregon (www.signetwork.org); and
(c) If a project receiving assistance under this program authority
maintains a Web site, include relevant information and documents in a
form that meets a government or industry-recognized standard for
IV. Application and Submission Information
1. Address to Request Application Package: You can obtain an
application package via the Internet, from the Education Publications
Center (ED Pubs), or from the program office.
To obtain a copy via the Internet, use the following address:
fund/grant/apply/grantapps/index.html. To obtain a copy from ED Pubs,
write, fax, or call the following: ED Pubs, U.S. Department of
Education, P.O. Box 22207, Alexandria, VA 22304. Telephone, toll free:
1-877-433-7827. Fax: (703) 605-6794. If you use a
telecommunications device for the deaf (TDD) or a text telephone (TTY),
call, toll free: 1-877-576-7734.
You can contact ED Pubs at its Web site, also: www.EDPubs.gov or at
its email address: firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you request an application package from ED Pubs, be sure to
identify this competition as follows: CFDA Number 84.323A.
To obtain a copy from the program office, contact the person listed
under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT in section VII of this notice.
Individuals with disabilities can obtain a copy of the application
package in an accessible format (e.g., braille, large print, audiotape,
or compact disc) by contacting the person or team listed under
Accessible Format in section VIII of this notice.
2. Content and Form of Application Submission: Requirements
concerning the content of an application, together with the forms you
must submit, are in the application package for this competition.
Page Limit: The application narrative (Part III of the application)
is where you, the applicant, address the selection criteria that
reviewers use to evaluate your application. You must limit Part III to
the equivalent of no more than 100 pages, using the following
A ``page'' is 8.5 x 11, on one side
only, with 1'' margins at the top, bottom, and both sides.
Double space (no more than three lines per vertical inch)
all text in the application narrative, including titles, headings,
footnotes, quotations, references, and captions.
Use a font that is either 12 point or larger or no smaller
than 10 pitch (characters per inch).
Use one of the following fonts: Times New Roman, Courier,
Courier New, or Arial. An application submitted in any other font
(including Times Roman or Arial Narrow) will not be accepted.
The page limit does not apply to Part I, the cover sheet; Part II,
the budget section, including the narrative budget justification; Part
IV, the assurances and certifications; or the one-page abstract, the
resumes, the bibliography, or the letters of support. However, the page
limit does apply to all of the application narrative section (Part
We will reject your application if you exceed the page limit; or if
you apply other standards and exceed the equivalent of the page limit.
3. Submission Dates and Times:
Applications Available: August 2, 2012.
Deadline for Transmittal of Applications: September 4, 2012.
Applications for grants under this competition may be submitted
electronically using the Grants.gov Apply site (Grants.gov), or in
paper format by mail or hand delivery. For information (including dates
and times) about how to submit your application electronically, or in
paper format by mail or hand delivery, please refer to section IV. 7.
Other Submission Requirements of this notice.
We do not consider an application that does not comply with the
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.
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 competition.
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, Central Contractor Registry, and System for Award Management:
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)--and, after July 24, 2012, with the System
for Award Management (SAM), the Government's primary registrant
c. Provide your DUNS number and TIN on your application; and
d. Maintain an active CCR or SAM 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 or SAM 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 registration annually. This may take three or more
business days to complete. Information about SAM is available at
In addition, if you are submitting your application via Grants.gov,
you must (1) be designated by your organization as an Authorized
Organization Representative (AOR); and (2) register yourself with
Grants.gov as an AOR. Details on these steps are outlined at the
following Grants.gov Web page: www.grants.gov/applicants/get_registered.jsp.
7. Other Submission Requirements: Applications for grants under
this competition may be submitted electronically or in paper format by
mail or hand delivery.
a. Electronic Submission of Applications.
We are participating as a partner in the Governmentwide Grants.gov
Apply site. The State Personnel Development Grants Program competition,
CFDA number 84.323A, is included in this project. We request your
participation in Grants.gov.
If you choose to submit your application electronically, you must
use the Governmentwide Grants.gov Apply site at www.Grants.gov. Through
this site, you will be able to download a copy of the application
package, complete it offline, and then upload and submit your
application. You may not email an electronic copy of a grant
application to us.
You may access the electronic grant application for the State
Personnel Development Grants Program competition at www.Grants.gov. You
must search for the downloadable application package for this
competition by the CFDA number. Do not include the CFDA number's alpha
suffix in your
search (e.g., search for 84.323, not 84.323A).
Please note the following:
Your participation in Grants.gov is voluntary.
When you enter the Grants.gov site, you will find
information about submitting an application electronically through the
site, as well as the hours of operation.
Applications received by Grants.gov are date and time
stamped. Your application must be fully uploaded and submitted and must
be date and time stamped by the Grants.gov system no later than 4:30:00
p.m., Washington, DC time, on the application deadline date. Except as
otherwise noted in this section, we will not accept your application if
it is received--that is, date and time stamped by the Grants.gov
system--after 4:30:00 p.m., Washington, DC time, on the application
deadline date. We do not consider an application that does not comply
with the deadline requirements. When we retrieve your application from
Grants.gov, we will notify you if we are rejecting your application
because it was date and time stamped by the Grants.gov system after
4:30:00 p.m., Washington, DC time, on the application deadline date.
The amount of time it can take to upload an application
will vary depending on a variety of factors, including the size of the
application and the speed of your Internet connection. Therefore, we
strongly recommend that you do not wait until the application deadline
date to begin the submission process through Grants.gov.
You should review and follow the Education Submission
Procedures for submitting an application through Grants.gov that are
included in the application package for this competition to ensure that
you submit your application in a timely manner to the Grants.gov
system. You can also find the Education Submission Procedures
pertaining to Grants.gov under News and Events on the Department's G5
system home page at www.G5.gov.
You will not receive additional point value because you
submit your application in electronic format, nor will we penalize you
if you submit your application in paper format.
If you submit your application electronically, you must
submit all documents electronically, including all information you
typically provide on the following forms: the Application for Federal
Assistance (SF 424), the Department of Education Supplemental
Information for SF 424, Budget Information--Non-Construction Programs
(ED 524), and all necessary assurances and certifications.
If you submit your application electronically, you must
upload any narrative sections and all other attachments to your
application as files in a PDF (Portable Document) read-only, non-
modifiable format. Do not upload an interactive or fillable PDF file.
If you upload a file type other than a read-only, non-modifiable PDF or
submit a password-protected file, we will not review that material.
Your electronic application must comply with any page-
limit requirements described in this notice.
After you electronically submit your application, you will
receive from Grants.gov an automatic notification of receipt that
contains a Grants.gov tracking number. (This notification indicates
receipt by Grants.gov only, not receipt by the Department.) The
Department then will retrieve your application from Grants.gov and send
a second notification to you by email. This second notification
indicates that the Department has received your application and has
assigned your application a PR/Award number (an ED-specified
identifying number unique to your application).
We may request that you provide us original signatures on
forms at a later date.
Application Deadline Date Extension in Case of Technical Issues
with the Grants.gov System: If you are experiencing problems submitting
your application through Grants.gov, please contact the Grants.gov
Support Desk, toll free, at 1-800-518-4726. You must obtain a
Grants.gov Support Desk Case Number and must keep a record of it.
If you are prevented from electronically submitting your
application on the application deadline date because of technical
problems with the Grants.gov system, we will grant you an extension
until 4:30:00 p.m., Washington, DC time, the following business day to
enable you to transmit your application electronically or by hand
delivery. You also may mail your application by following the mailing
instructions described elsewhere in this notice.
If you submit an application after 4:30:00 p.m., Washington, DC
time, on the application deadline date, please contact the person
listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT in section VII of this
notice and provide an explanation of the technical problem you
experienced with Grants.gov, along with the Grants.gov Support Desk
Case Number. We will accept your application if we can confirm that a
technical problem occurred with the Grants.gov system and that that
problem affected your ability to submit your application by 4:30:00
p.m., Washington, DC time, on the application deadline date. The
Department will contact you after a determination is made on whether
your application will be accepted.
Note: The extensions to which we refer in this section apply
only to the unavailability of, or technical problems with, the
Grants.gov system. We will not grant you an extension if you failed
to fully register to submit your application to Grants.gov before
the application deadline date and time or if the technical problem
you experienced is unrelated to the Grants.gov system.
b. Submission of Paper Applications by Mail.
If you submit your application in paper format 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 84.323A), LBJ Basement Level 1, 400 Maryland Avenue SW.,
Washington, DC 20202-4260.
You must show proof of mailing consisting of one of the following:
(1) A legibly dated U.S. Postal Service postmark.
(2) A legible mail receipt with the date of mailing stamped by the
U.S. Postal Service.
(3) A dated shipping label, invoice, or receipt from a commercial
(4) Any other proof of mailing acceptable to the Secretary of the
U.S. Department of Education.
If you mail your application through the U.S. Postal Service, we do
not accept either of the following as proof of mailing:
(1) A private metered postmark.
(2) A mail receipt that is not dated by the U.S. Postal Service.
If your application is postmarked after the application deadline
date, we will not consider your application.
Note: The U.S. Postal Service does not uniformly provide a dated
postmark. Before relying on this method, you should check with your
local post office.
c. Submission of Paper Applications by Hand Delivery.
If you submit your application in paper format 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
84.323A), 550 12th Street SW., Room 7041, Potomac Center Plaza,
Washington, DC 20202-4260.
The Application Control Center accepts hand deliveries daily
between 8:00 a.m. and 4:30:00 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 competition under which you are submitting your
(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 selection criteria for this program are
from 34 CFR 75.210 and are listed in the application package.
2. Review and Selection Process: We remind potential applicants
that in reviewing applications in any discretionary grant competition,
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. Additional Review and Selection Process Factors:
In the past, the Department has had difficulty finding peer
reviewers for certain competitions because so many individuals who are
eligible to serve as peer reviewers have conflicts of interest. The
Standing Panel requirements under section 682(b) of IDEA also have
placed additional constraints on the availability of reviewers.
Therefore, the Department has determined that, for some discretionary
grant competitions, applications may be separated into two or more
groups and ranked and selected for funding within specific groups. This
procedure will make it easier for the Department to find peer
reviewers, by ensuring that greater numbers of individuals who are
eligible to serve as reviewers for any particular group of applicants
will not have conflicts of interest. It also will increase the quality,
independence, and fairness of the review process, while permitting
panel members to review applications under discretionary grant
competitions for which they also have submitted applications. However,
if the Department decides to select an equal number of applications in
each group for funding, this may result in different cut-off points for
fundable applications in each group.
4. 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 part 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: (a) If you apply for a grant under this competition,
you must ensure that you have in place the necessary processes and
systems to comply with the reporting requirements in 2 CFR part 170
should you receive funding under the competition. This does not apply
if you have an exception under 2 CFR 170.110(b).
(b) At the end of your project period, you must submit a final
performance report, including financial information, as directed by the
Secretary. If you receive a multi-year award, you must submit an annual
performance report that provides the most current performance and
financial expenditure information as directed by the Secretary under 34
CFR 75.118. The Secretary may also require more frequent performance
reports under 34 CFR 75.720(c). For specific requirements on reporting,
please go to www.ed.gov/fund/grant/apply/appforms/appforms.html.
4. Performance Measures: The goal of the SPDG Program is to reform
and improve State systems for personnel preparation and professional
development in early intervention, educational, and transition services
in order to improve results for children with disabilities. The
Department has revised the performance measures developed for this
program pursuant to the Government Performance and Results Act of 1993
to better assess the success of the program in meeting these goals. The
revised measures assess the extent to which:
Projects use evidence-based professional development
practices to support the attainment of identified competencies.
Participants in SPDG professional development demonstrate
improvement in implementation of SPDG-supported practices over time.
Projects use SPDG professional development funds to
provide follow-up activities designed to sustain the use of SPDG-
Highly qualified special education teachers who have
participated in SPDG supported special education teacher retention
activities remain as special education teachers two years after their
initial participation in these activities.
Each grantee funded under this competition must collect and
annually report data related to its performance on these measures in
the project's annual and final performance report to the Department in
accordance with section 653(d) of IDEA and 34 CFR 75.590. Applicants
should discuss in the application narrative how they propose to collect
performance data for these measures.
5. Continuation Awards: In making a continuation award, the
Secretary may consider, under 34 CFR 75.253, the extent to which a
grantee has made ``substantial progress toward meeting the objectives
in its approved application.'' This consideration includes the review
of a grantee's progress in meeting the targets and projected outcomes
in its approved application, and whether the grantee has expended funds
in a manner that is consistent with its approved application and
budget. In making a continuation
grant, the Secretary also considers whether the grantee is operating in
compliance with the assurances in its approved application, including
those applicable to Federal civil rights laws that prohibit
discrimination in programs or activities receiving Federal financial
assistance from the Department (34 CFR 100.4, 104.5, 106.4, 108.8, and
VII. Agency Contact
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Jennifer Coffey, U.S. Department of
Education, 400 Maryland Avenue SW., room 4097, Potomac Center Plaza
(PCP), Washington, DC 20202-2600. Telephone: (202) 245-6673.
If you use a TDD or a TTY, call the Federal Relay Service (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) by contacting
the Grants and Contracts Services Team, U.S. Department of Education,
400 Maryland Avenue SW., room 5075, PCP, Washington, DC 20202-2550.
Telephone: (202) 245-7363. If you use a TDD or a TTY, call the FRS,
toll free, at 1-800-877-8339.
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: 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
You may also access documents of the Department published in the
Federal Register by using the article search feature at:
www.federalregister.gov. Specifically, through the advanced search
feature at this site, you can limit your search to documents published
by the Department.
Dated: July 30, 2012.
Assistant Secretary for Special Education and Rehabilitative Services.
[FR Doc. 2012-18918 Filed 8-1-12; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4000-01-P