[Federal Register Volume 78, Number 75 (Thursday, April 18, 2013)]
[Notices]
[Pages 23234-23241]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2013-09160]


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DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION


Applications for New Awards; Technical Assistance and 
Dissemination To Improve Services and Results for Children With 
Disabilities--Center on Dispute Resolution

AGENCY: Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services, 
Department of Education.

ACTION: Notice.

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    Overview Information:
    Technical Assistance and Dissemination to Improve Services and 
Results for Children With Disabilities--Center on Dispute Resolution.
    Notice inviting applications for a new award for fiscal year (FY) 
2013.
    Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) Number: 84.326X.

DATES: 
    Applications Available: April 18, 2013.
    Deadline for Transmittal of Applications: June 3, 2013.
    Deadline for Intergovernmental Review: August 1, 2013.

Full Text of Announcement

I. Funding Opportunity Description

    Purpose of Program: The purpose of the Technical Assistance and 
Dissemination to Improve Services and Results for Children with 
Disabilities program is to promote academic achievement and to improve 
results for children with disabilities by providing technical 
assistance, supporting model demonstration projects, disseminating 
useful information, and implementing activities that are supported by 
scientifically based research.
    Priority: In accordance with 34 CFR 75.105(b)(2)(v), this priority 
is from allowable activities specified or otherwise authorized in the 
statute (see sections 663 and 681(d) of the Individuals with 
Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), 20 U.S.C. 1463 and 1481(d)).
    Absolute Priority: For FY 2013 and any subsequent year in which we 
make awards from the list of unfunded applicants from this competition, 
this priority is an absolute priority. Under 34 CFR 75.105(c)(3) we 
consider only applications that meet this priority.
    This priority is:
    Center on Dispute Resolution.
    Background:
    IDEA includes procedural safeguards that are designed to protect 
the rights of children with disabilities and their parents and to 
provide parents with mechanisms for resolving, at the earliest point in 
time, disputes with those who provide services to children with 
disabilities (State educational agencies (SEAs), local educational 
agencies (LEAs), schools, Part C State lead agencies, and early 
intervention service (EIS) providers). The procedural safeguards 
include the opportunity to seek a timely resolution of disputes about 
any matter relating to the provision of a free appropriate public 
education to an eligible child or of appropriate early intervention 
services to infants and toddlers with disabilities. Thus, IDEA 
encourages constructive relationships between parents of children with 
disabilities and those who provide services to children with 
disabilities by facilitating open communication between the parents and 
these entities and encouraging early resolution of disputes so that 
disagreements do not escalate and become adversarial. IDEA's dispute 
resolution procedures include provisions for State complaints, 
mediation, due process complaints and due process hearings, and 
resolution sessions, as described below.
    State Complaints. IDEA's State complaint procedures permit parents 
and other interested individuals or organizations to file a complaint 
with the SEA or Part C State lead agency to seek resolution of any 
alleged violations of IDEA. The goal of the State complaint procedures 
is to resolve disputes while avoiding costly or time consuming due 
process hearings (71 FR 46600--Part B regulations; 76 FR 60214-60216--
Part C regulations). The State complaint procedures provide an 
important means of ensuring that the educational or early intervention 
needs of children with disabilities are met (71 FR 46601; 76 FR 60214-
60216).
    Mediation. In response to increasing numbers of due process hearing

[[Page 23235]]

requests, Congress amended IDEA in 1997 to require SEAs and Part C 
State lead agencies to make mediation available, at a minimum, whenever 
a request for a due process hearing is made. In 2004, Congress amended 
section 615(e) of IDEA to allow parties to use mediation to resolve 
disputes involving any matter under IDEA, not just those matters that 
are the subject of a due process complaint. (This amendment also 
applies to Part C through section 639(a)(8) of IDEA). In mediation, a 
neutral third party facilitates the resolution of disputes. Mediation 
is more likely than due process hearings to foster positive 
relationships between families and educators (U.S. Government 
Accountability Office, 2003).
    Due Process Hearings. In due process hearings, an impartial, 
knowledgeable decision-maker resolves disputes. While due process 
hearings are an important protection, they can be costly, time 
consuming, and contentious, and they may damage relationships between 
the parties involved in the dispute.
    Resolution Session. The 2004 amendments to IDEA added a requirement 
for a resolution session prior to a due process hearing. The resolution 
session requirement applies to all IDEA Part B due process hearing 
requests and to those IDEA Part C due process hearing requests filed in 
a State that has elected to adopt the Part B-type due process hearing 
procedures in 34 CFR 303.440 through 303.449. Under section 
615(f)(1)(B) of IDEA, the LEA (or in the case of IDEA Part C, under 34 
CFR 303.442, the State lead agency) must convene a meeting with the 
parents and relevant members of the child's individualized education 
program (IEP) or individualized family service plan (IFSP) team who 
have specific knowledge of the facts identified in the complaint. This 
provides the parents and the agency with an opportunity to resolve the 
complaint and avoid a due process hearing.
    Early Resolution Practices. In addition to these methods of dispute 
resolution specifically required under IDEA, there are a variety of 
informal or ``early resolution'' practices that can be used to resolve 
disputes at the school or district level and avoid time-consuming and 
costly litigation (U.S. Government Accountability Office, 2003). In the 
preamble to the 2006 final regulations implementing Part B of IDEA, the 
Department encouraged States to explore the use of early resolution 
practices to facilitate the timely resolution of disputes and to 
preserve the relationships between families and educators (71 FR 46540, 
46604).
    Over the past seven years, data from State Performance Plans (SPPs) 
and Annual Performance Reports (APRs) submitted to the Office of 
Special Education Programs (OSEP) show a steady decline in the number 
of IDEA Part B due process hearings held across the country, down 68 
percent since FY 2004. At the same time, SEAs and Part C State lead 
agencies are reporting an increase in the use of informal early 
resolution practices that have been shown to reduce the need for 
dispute resolution and facilitate early resolution of disputes. 
Examples of early resolution practices include training in conflict 
resolution, which is designed to equip individuals with skills to 
better communicate and negotiate their positions and interests, 
(Henderson, 2008), and IEP and IFSP facilitation.
    Since 1998, OSEP has funded a technical assistance (TA) center to 
support States' implementation of timely and effective dispute 
resolution processes. (For further information on the work of the 
current center, please see the following Web site: 
www.directionservice.org/cadre.) The current center's funding will end 
in FY 2013.
    The Department believes it is important to continue to fund a TA 
center that provides SEAs and Part C State lead agencies with resources 
that can help them effectively implement a range of dispute resolution 
options to ensure that the trend toward early, less costly, and less 
adversarial dispute resolution continues. SEAs and Part C State lead 
agencies also need information on how to collect and use data from 
dispute resolution systems to improve compliance with IDEA 
requirements. In addition, continued funding of a TA center on dispute 
resolution that works directly with OSEP-funded parent technical 
assistance centers (PTACs) will help ensure that parents and families 
have access to information on how to resolve their disagreements in 
positive and constructive ways.
    Priority:
    The purpose of this priority is to fund a cooperative agreement to 
support the establishment and operation of a Center on Dispute 
Resolution designed to produce, at a minimum, the following outcomes: 
(1) An increased capacity of SEAs and Part C State lead agencies to 
support local implementation of effective early resolution practices to 
resolve disputes and thereby decrease requests for State complaints and 
due process hearings; (2) an increased body of knowledge on strategies 
for collecting, reporting, and using high-quality data on dispute 
resolution; (3) an increased body of knowledge on exemplary practices 
for parents and families to resolve disputes in positive and 
constructive ways; (4) an improved ability of SEAs and Part C State 
lead agencies to implement a range of dispute resolution options, 
including methods of dispute resolution required under IDEA and early 
resolution practices; (5) an improved capacity of OSEP-funded PTACs to 
provide technical assistance to OSEP-funded parent centers on the range 
of effective dispute resolution options; and (6) an analysis of current 
information on State and national trends and other data about dispute 
resolution to determine the extent to which SEAs and Part C State lead 
agencies have: (a) Met the required timelines when resolving State 
complaints and issuing due process hearing decisions; (b) used 
resolution meetings and mediation to successfully resolve disputes 
between parents and LEAs or EIS providers; and (c) implemented 
effective methods of early dispute resolution.
    In addition to these programmatic requirements, to be considered 
for funding under this absolute priority, applicants must meet the 
application and administrative requirements contained in this priority. 
OSEP encourages innovative approaches to meet these requirements, which 
are as follows:
    (a) Demonstrate, in the narrative section of the application under 
``Significance of the Project,'' how the proposed project will--
    (1) Address the training and information needs of SEAs, Part C 
State lead agencies, and parents and families to resolve disputes 
arising from programs under Part B and Part C of IDEA. To address this 
requirement the applicant must--
    (i) Present applicable national and State data demonstrating the 
training and information needs of SEAs, Part C State lead agencies, and 
parents and families to resolve disputes;
    (ii) Demonstrate knowledge of current educational issues and policy 
initiatives in dispute resolution (e.g., the implementation and 
effectiveness of IEP/IFSP facilitation); and
    (iii) Present information about the implementation and 
effectiveness of current dispute resolution systems in SEAs and Part C 
State lead agencies.
    (2) Result in early resolution of disputes and improved compliance 
with IDEA dispute resolution requirements.
    (b) Demonstrate, in the narrative section of the application under

[[Page 23236]]

``Quality of the Project Services,'' how the proposed project will--
    (1) Ensure equal access and treatment for members of groups (e.g., 
race, color, national origin, language, linguistic background, gender, 
age, or disability) that traditionally have not engaged in, or have 
been underrepresented in accessing, dispute resolution options. To meet 
this requirement, the applicant must describe the process that will be 
used to--
    (i) Identify the needs of the intended recipients (i.e., SEAs, Part 
C State lead agencies, and PTACs) for technical assistance and 
information; and
    (ii) Ensure that services and products meet the needs of the 
intended recipients (e.g., creating materials in formats and languages 
accessible to the stakeholders served by the intended recipients).
    (2) Meet its goals, objectives, and outcomes. To meet this 
requirement, the applicant must provide--
    (i) Measurable intended project outcomes; and
    (ii) The theory of action (i.e., a logic model) on how the proposed 
project will achieve the project outcomes.
    (3) Use a conceptual framework to guide the development of project 
plans and activities, describing any underlying concepts, assumptions, 
expectations, beliefs, or theories, as well as the presumed 
relationship or linkages among these variables, and any empirical 
support for this framework;
    (4) Be based on current research and evidence-based practices. To 
meet this requirement, the applicant must describe--
    (i) The current research on the effectiveness of dispute resolution 
options and practices;
    (ii) The current research about adult learning principles and how 
this information will be used to provide training and technical 
assistance to the intended recipients on implementing effective dispute 
resolution systems; and
    (iii) The process the proposed project will use to incorporate 
current research and evidence-based practices in the development and 
delivery of its products and services.
    (5) Develop products and provide services that are of sufficient 
quality, intensity, and duration to achieve the outcomes of the 
proposed project. To address this requirement, the applicant must 
describe--
    (i) Its proposed activities to identify and expand the knowledge 
base in dispute resolution and early resolution practices;
    (ii) Its proposed approach to universal, general TA,\1\ including 
the intended recipients of the products and services under this 
approach;
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    \1\ ``Universal, general TA'' means TA and information provided 
to independent users through their own initiative, resulting in 
minimal interaction with TA center staff and including one-time, 
invited or offered conference presentations by TA center staff. This 
category of TA also includes information or products, such as 
newsletters, guidebooks, or research syntheses, downloaded from the 
TA center's Web site by independent users. Brief communications by 
TA center staff with recipients, either by telephone or email, are 
also considered universal, general TA.
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    (iii) Its proposed approach to targeted, specialized TA,\2\ 
including the intended recipients of the products and services under 
this approach and its proposed approach to measure the readiness of 
potential TA recipients to work with the project, including their 
current infrastructure, available resources, and ability to build 
capacity at the local level; and
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    \2\ ``Targeted, specialized TA'' means TA service based on needs 
common to multiple recipients and not extensively individualized. A 
relationship is established between the TA recipient and one or more 
TA center staff. This category of TA includes one-time, labor-
intensive events, such as facilitating strategic planning or hosting 
regional or national conferences. It can also include episodic, less 
labor-intensive events that extend over a period of time, such as 
facilitating a series of conference calls on single or multiple 
topics that are designed around the needs of the recipients. 
Facilitating communities of practice can also be considered 
targeted, specialized TA.
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    (iv) Its proposed approach to intensive, sustained TA,\3\ including 
the intended recipients of the products and services under this 
approach. To address this requirement, the applicant must describe--
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    \3\ ``Intensive, sustained TA'' means TA services often provided 
onsite and requiring a stable, ongoing relationship between the TA 
center staff and the TA recipient. TA services are defined as 
negotiated series of activities designed to reach a valued outcome. 
This category of TA should result in changes to policy, program, 
practice, or operations that support increased recipient capacity or 
improved outcomes at one or more systems levels.
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    (A) Its proposed plan for assisting SEAs, Part C State lead 
agencies, and PTACs to build training systems that include professional 
development based on evidence-based adult learning principles and 
coaching; and
    (B) Its proposed plan for supporting SEAs, Part C State lead 
agencies, and PTACs in their work with hearing officers, IEP/IFSP Team 
facilitators, or other dispute resolution personnel, as well as 
families and personnel at each level of the education or early 
intervention system (e.g., regional TA providers, school districts, 
schools, service coordinators, and related service and EIS providers 
and personnel), to ensure that there is effective communication among 
these groups and that there are systems in place to support the use of 
a range of dispute resolution procedures and practices.
    (6) Develop products and implement services to maximize the 
efficiency of an SEA's or Part C State lead agency's dispute resolution 
system. To address this requirement, the applicant must describe--
    (i) How the proposed project will use technology to achieve the 
intended outcomes;
    (ii) With whom the proposed project will collaborate and the 
intended outcomes of this collaboration; and
    (iii) How the proposed project will leverage non-project resources 
to achieve the proposed project outcomes.
    (c) Demonstrate, in the narrative section of the application under 
``Quality of the Evaluation Plan,'' how--
    (1) The proposed project will collect and analyze data related to 
specific and measurable goals, objectives, and outcomes of the project. 
To address this requirement, the applicant must describe--
    (i) Proposed evaluation methodologies, including instruments, data 
collection methods, and possible analyses;
    (ii) Proposed standards or targets for determining effectiveness; 
and
    (iii) Proposed methods for collecting data on implementation 
supports and fidelity of implementation.
    (2) The proposed project will use the evaluation results to examine 
the effectiveness of the project's implementation strategies and the 
progress toward achieving intended outcomes; and
    (3) The methods of evaluation will produce quantitative and 
qualitative data that demonstrate whether the project achieved the 
intended outcomes.
    (d) Demonstrate, in the narrative section of the application under 
``Adequacy of Project Resources,'' how--
    (1) The proposed project will encourage applications for employment 
from persons who are members of groups that have traditionally been 
underrepresented based on race, color, national origin, language/
linguistic background, gender, age, or disability, as appropriate;
    (2) The proposed key project personnel, consultants, and 
subcontractors have the qualifications and experience to carry out the 
proposed activities and achieve the project's intended outcomes;
    (3) The applicant and any key partners have adequate resources to 
carry out the proposed activities; and
    (4) The proposed costs are reasonable in relation to the 
anticipated results and benefits.

[[Page 23237]]

    (e) Demonstrate, in the narrative section of the application under 
``Quality of the Management Plan,'' how--
    (1) The proposed management plan will ensure that the project's 
intended outcomes will be achieved on time and within budget. To 
address this requirement, the applicant must describe--
    (i) Clearly defined responsibilities for key project personnel, 
consultants, and subcontractors, as appropriate; and
    (ii) Timelines and milestones for accomplishing the project tasks;
    (2) Key project personnel and any consultants and subcontractors 
who will be allocated to the project and the appropriateness and 
adequacy of these time allocations to achieve the project's intended 
outcomes;
    (3) The proposed management plan will ensure that the products and 
services provided are of high quality; and
    (4) The proposed project will benefit from a diversity of 
perspectives, including families, EIS providers, educators, related 
service providers, TA providers, researchers, and policy makers, among 
others, in its development and operation.
    (f) Meet the following program requirements--
    (1) Include in Appendix A a logic model that depicts, at a minimum, 
the goals, activities, outputs, and outcomes of the proposed project. A 
logic model communicates how a project will achieve its outcomes and 
provides a framework for both the formative and summative evaluations 
of the project.

    Note: The following Web sites provide more information on logic 
models: 232www.researchutilization.org/matrix/logicmodel_resource3c.html and www.tadnet.org/model_and_performance;

    (2) Include in Appendix A a visual representation of the conceptual 
framework, if a visual representation is developed;
    (3) Include in Appendix A a person-loading chart and timelines, as 
appropriate, to illustrate the management plan described in the 
narrative;
    (4) Include in the budget attendance at the following:
    (i) A one and one-half day kick-off meeting to be held in 
Washington, DC, after receipt of the award, and an annual planning 
meeting held in Washington, DC, with the OSEP project officer and other 
relevant staff during each subsequent year of the project period.

    Note: Within 30 days of receipt of the award, a post-award 
teleconference must be held between the OSEP project officer and the 
grantee's project director or other authorized representative;

    (ii) A two and one-half day project directors' conference in 
Washington, DC, during each year of the project period;
    (iii) Two, two-day trips annually to present at Department 
briefings, Department-sponsored conferences, and other meetings, as 
requested by OSEP; and
    (iv) A one-day intensive review meeting that will be held during 
the last half of the second year of the project period.
    (5) Include in the budget a line item for an annual set-aside of 
five percent of the grant amount to support emerging needs that are 
consistent with the proposed project's intended outcomes, as those 
needs are identified in consultation with OSEP.

    Note: With approval from the OSEP project officer, the project 
must reallocate any remaining funds from this annual set-aside no 
later than the end of the third quarter of each budget period; and

    (6) Maintain a Web site that meets government or industry-
recognized standards for accessibility.
    Fourth and Fifth Years of the Project:
    In deciding whether to continue funding the project for the fourth 
and fifth years, the Secretary will consider the requirements of 34 CFR 
75.253(a), as well as--
    (a) The recommendation of a review team consisting of experts 
selected by the Secretary. This review will be conducted during a one-
day intensive meeting in Washington, DC, that will be held during the 
last half of the second year of the project period;
    (b) The timeliness and effectiveness with which all requirements of 
the negotiated cooperative agreement have been or are being met by the 
project; and
    (c) The quality, relevance, and usefulness of the project's 
activities and products and the degree to which the project's 
activities and products are aligned with the project's objectives and 
likely to result in the project achieving its proposed outcomes.
    References:

Henderson, K. (2008, May). Optional IDEA alternative dispute 
resolution. Project Forum at the National Association of State 
Directors of Special Education (NASDSE) and Consortium for 
Appropriate Dispute Resolution in Special Education (CADRE). 
Retrieved from: www.projectforum.org/docs/OptionalIDEAAlternativeDisputeResolution.pdf.
U.S. Government Accountability Office. (2003, September). Special 
education: Numbers of formal disputes are generally low and States 
are using mediation and other strategies to resolve conflicts. 
Publication No. GAO-03-897. Retrieved from: www.gao.gov/new.items/d03897.pdf.

    Waiver of Proposed Rulemaking: Under the Administrative Procedure 
Act (APA) (5 U.S.C. 553) the Department generally offers interested 
parties the opportunity to comment on proposed priorities and 
requirements. Section 681(d) of IDEA, however, makes the public comment 
requirements of the APA inapplicable to the priority in this notice.
    Program Authority: 20 U.S.C. 1463 and 1481.
    Applicable Regulations: (a) The Education Department General 
Administrative Regulations in 34 CFR parts 74, 75, 77, 79, 80, 81, 82, 
84, 86, 97, 98, and 99. (b) The Education Department debarment and 
suspension regulations in 2 CFR part 3485.

    Note: The regulations in 34 CFR part 79 apply to all applicants 
except federally recognized Indian tribes.


    Note: The regulations in 34 CFR part 86 apply to institutions of 
higher education (IHEs) only.

II. Award Information

    Type of Award: Cooperative agreement.
    Estimated Available Funds: $650,000.
    Contingent upon the availability of funds and the quality of 
applications, we may make additional awards in FY 2014 from the list of 
unfunded applicants from this competition.
    Maximum Award: We will reject any application that proposes a 
budget exceeding $650,000 for a single budget period of 12 months. The 
Assistant Secretary for Special Education and Rehabilitative Services 
may change the maximum amount through a notice published in the Federal 
Register.
    Estimated Number of Awards: 1.

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

    Project Period: Up to 36 months with an optional additional 24 
months based on performance. Applications must include plans for both 
the 36-month award and the 24-month extension.

III. Eligibility Information

    1. Eligible Applicants: SEAs; LEAs, including public charter 
schools that are considered LEAs under State law; IHEs; other public 
agencies; private nonprofit organizations; freely associated States and 
outlying areas; Indian tribes or tribal organizations; and for-profit 
organizations.
    2. Cost Sharing or Matching: This program does not require cost 
sharing or matching.

[[Page 23238]]

    3. Other General Requirements: (a) 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).
    (b) Each applicant and grant recipient funded under this program 
must involve individuals with disabilities or parents of individuals 
with disabilities ages birth through 26 in planning, implementing, and 
evaluating the project (see section 682(a)(1)(A) of IDEA).

IV. Application and Submission Information

    1. Address to Request Application Package: You can obtain an 
application package via the Internet or from the Education Publications 
Center (ED Pubs). To obtain a copy via the Internet, use the following 
address: www.ed.gov/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: edpubs@inet.ed.gov.
    If you request an application from ED Pubs, be sure to identify 
this competition as follows: CFDA number 84.326X.
    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 70 pages using the following standards:
     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, as well as all text in 
charts, tables, figures, and graphs.
     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 Part III.
    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: April 18, 2013.
    Deadline for Transmittal of Applications: June 3, 2013.
    Applications for grants under this competition must be submitted 
electronically using the Grants.gov Apply site (Grants.gov). For 
information (including dates and times) about how to submit your 
application electronically, or in paper format by mail or hand delivery 
if you qualify for an exception to the electronic submission 
requirement, please refer to section IV.7. Other Submission 
Requirements of this notice.
    We do 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.
    Deadline for Intergovernmental Review: August 1, 2013.
    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, 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 
database;
    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 
SAM.gov.
    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 must be submitted electronically unless you qualify 
for an exception to this requirement in accordance with the 
instructions in this section.
    a. Electronic Submission of Applications.
    Applications for grants under the Center on Dispute Resolution

[[Page 23239]]

competition, CFDA number 84.326X, must be submitted electronically 
using 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.
    We will reject your application if you submit it in paper format 
unless, as described elsewhere in this section, you qualify for one of 
the exceptions to the electronic submission requirement and submit, no 
later than two weeks before the application deadline date, a written 
statement to the Department that you qualify for one of these 
exceptions. Further information regarding calculation of the date that 
is two weeks before the application deadline date is provided later in 
this section under Exception to Electronic Submission Requirement.
    You may access the electronic grant application for the Center on 
Dispute Resolution 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 84.326, not 84.326X).
    Please note the following:
     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 qualify for an exception to the electronic submission 
requirement, as described elsewhere in this section, and submit your 
application in paper format.
     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.
     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. Additional, detailed information on how to attach 
files is in the application instructions.
     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.

    Exception to Electronic Submission Requirement: You qualify for an 
exception to the electronic submission requirement, and may submit your 
application in paper format, if you are unable to submit an application 
through the Grants.gov system because--
     You do not have access to the Internet; or
     You do not have the capacity to upload large documents to 
the Grants.gov system;
and
     No later than two weeks before the application deadline 
date (14 calendar days or, if the fourteenth calendar day before the 
application deadline date falls on a Federal holiday, the next business 
day following the Federal holiday), you mail or fax a written statement 
to the Department, explaining which of the two grounds for an

[[Page 23240]]

exception prevents you from using the Internet to submit your 
application.
    If you mail your written statement to the Department, it must be 
postmarked no later than two weeks before the application deadline 
date. If you fax your written statement to the Department, we must 
receive the faxed statement no later than two weeks before the 
application deadline date.
    Address and mail or fax your statement to: Tina Diamond, U.S. 
Department of Education, 400 Maryland Avenue SW., room 4094, Potomac 
Center Plaza (PCP), Washington, DC 20202-2600. FAX: (202) 245-7617.
    Your paper application must be submitted in accordance with the 
mail or hand delivery instructions described in this notice.
    b. Submission of Paper Applications by Mail.
    If you qualify for an exception to the electronic submission 
requirement, you may mail (through the U.S. Postal Service or a 
commercial carrier) your application to the Department. 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 84.326X), 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 
carrier.
    (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 qualify for an exception to the electronic submission 
requirement, you (or a courier service) may deliver your paper 
application to the Department by hand. You 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 84.326X), 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 
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 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 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); or we may send you an email containing a link to 
access an electronic version of your 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

[[Page 23241]]

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: Under the Government Performance and 
Results Act of 1993, the Department has established a set of 
performance measures, including long-term measures, that are designed 
to yield information on various aspects of the effectiveness and 
quality of the Technical Assistance and Dissemination to Improve 
Services and Results for Children with Disabilities program. These 
measures focus on the extent to which projects provide high-quality 
products and services, the relevance of project products and services 
to educational and early intervention policy and practice, and the use 
of products and services to improve educational and early intervention 
policy and practice.
    Grantees will be required to report information on their project's 
performance in annual reports to the Department (34 CFR 75.590).
    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 110.23).

VII. Agency Contact

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Tina Diamond, U.S. Department of 
Education, 400 Maryland Avenue SW., Room 4094, PCP, Washington, DC 
20202-2600. Telephone: (202) 245-6674.
    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 
site.
    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: April 12, 2013.
Michael Yudin,
Delegated the Authority to Perform the Functions and Duties of the 
Assistant Secretary for Education and Rehabilitative Services.
[FR Doc. 2013-09160 Filed 4-17-13; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4000-01-P