[Federal Register Volume 77, Number 72 (Friday, April 13, 2012)]
[Notices]
[Pages 22298-22306]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2012-8980]


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DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION


Applications for New Awards: Charter Schools Program (CSP) Grants 
to Non-State Educational Agency (Non-SEA) Eligible Applicants for 
Planning, Program Design, and Initial Implementation and for 
Dissemination

AGENCY: Office of Innovation and Improvement, Department of Education.

ACTION: Notice.

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[[Page 22299]]

Overview Information

    CSP Grants to Non-SEA Eligible Applicants for Planning, Program 
Design, and Initial Implementation and for Dissemination.
    Notice Inviting Applications for New Awards for Fiscal Year (FY) 
2012.
    Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) Numbers: 84.282B and 
84.282C.

DATES: Applications Available: April 13, 2012.
    Dates of Pre-Application Webinars:
    1. April 24, 2012, 3 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.;
    2. April 26, 2012, 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.;
    3. May 3, 2012, 3 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.; and
    4. May 9, 2012, 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. (all times are Washington, DC 
time).
    Deadline for Transmittal of Applications: June 6, 2012.
    Deadline for Intergovernmental Review: August 5, 2012.

Full Text of Announcement

I. Funding Opportunity Description

    Purpose of Program: The purposes of the CSP are to increase 
national understanding of the charter school model by expanding the 
number of high-quality charter schools available to students across the 
Nation; providing financial assistance for the planning, program 
design, and initial implementation of charter schools; and evaluating 
the effects of charter schools, including their effects on students, 
student academic achievement, staff, and parents.
    Non-SEA eligible applicants in States in which the SEA does not 
have an approved application under the CSP may receive grants directly 
from the Secretary for planning, program design, and initial 
implementation of charter schools, and to carry out dissemination 
activities. States with approved CSP applications are Arizona, 
Arkansas, California, Colorado, District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, 
Indiana, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, New Hampshire, 
New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, 
Texas, and Wisconsin.
    Non-SEA eligible applicants that propose to use grant funds for 
planning, program design, and initial implementation of charter schools 
must apply under CFDA number 84.282B. Non-SEA eligible applicants that 
request funds for dissemination activities must apply under CFDA number 
84.282C.
    Priorities: This notice includes four competitive preference 
priorities and one invitational priority. The competitive preference 
priorities are from the notice of final supplemental priorities and 
definitions for discretionary grant programs published in the Federal 
Register on December 15, 2010 (75 FR 78486), and corrected on May 12, 
2011 (76 FR 27637).
    Competitive Preference Priorities: For FY 2012 and any subsequent 
year in which we make awards from the list of unfunded applicants from 
this competition, these priorities are competitive preference 
priorities. Under 34 CFR 75.105(c)(2)(i) we will award up to an 
additional six points to an application depending on how well the 
application meets Competitive Preference Priority 1, up to an 
additional two points to an application depending on how well the 
application meets Competitive Preference Priority 2, up to an 
additional two points to an application depending on how well the 
application meets Competitive Preference Priority 3, and up to an 
additional five points to an application depending on how well the 
application meets Competitive Preference Priority 4. The maximum number 
of points an application can receive under these priorities is 15.

    Note:  In order to be eligible to receive preference under these 
competitive preference priorities, the applicant must identify the 
priority or priorities that it believes it meets and provide 
documentation supporting its claims.

    These priorities are:
    Competitive Preference Priority 1--Improving Achievement and High 
School Graduation Rates (up to 6 points).
    This priority is for projects that are designed to address one or 
more of the following priority areas:
    (a) Accelerating learning and helping to improve high school 
graduation rates (as defined in this notice) and college enrollment 
rates for students in rural local educational agencies (as defined in 
this notice).
    (b) Accelerating learning and helping to improve high school 
graduation rates and college enrollment rates for students with 
disabilities.
    (c) Accelerating learning and helping to improve high school 
graduation rates and college enrollment rates for English learners.
    (d) Accelerating learning and helping to improve high school 
graduation rates and college enrollment rates for high-need students 
(as defined in this notice).
    (e) Accelerating learning and helping to improve high school 
graduation rates and college enrollment rates in high-poverty schools 
(as defined in this notice).
    (f) Accelerating learning and helping to improve high school 
graduation rates and college enrollment rates for all students in an 
inclusive manner that ensures that the specific needs of high-need 
students participating in the project are addressed.

    Note: Applicants will receive one point for each priority area 
they address satisfactorily under this priority.


    Competitive Preference Priority 2--Promoting Diversity (up to 2 
points).
    This priority is for projects that are designed to promote student 
diversity, including racial and ethnic diversity, or avoid racial 
isolation.

    Note: An applicant addressing Competitive Preference Priority 
2--Promoting Diversity is invited to discuss how the proposed design 
of its project would help bring together students from different 
backgrounds, including students from different racial and ethnic 
backgrounds, to attain the benefits that flow from a diverse student 
body, or to avoid racial isolation.


    Note: For additional information on permissible ways to address 
this priority, please refer to the joint guidance issued by the 
Department of Education and the Department of Justice entitled, 
``Guidance on the Voluntary Use of Race to Achieve Diversity and 
Avoid Racial Isolation in Elementary and Secondary Schools'' at 
http://www2.ed.gov/about/offices/list/ocr/docs/guidance-ese-201111.pdf.


    Competitive Preference Priority 3--Improving Productivity (up to 2 
points).
    This priority is for projects that are designed to significantly 
increase efficiency in the use of time, staff, money, or other 
resources while improving student learning or other educational 
outcomes (i.e., outcome per unit of resource). Such projects may 
include innovative and sustainable uses of technology, modification of 
school schedules and teacher compensation systems, use of open 
educational resources (as defined in this notice), or other strategies.
    Competitive Preference Priority 4--Support for Military Families 
(up to 5 points).
    This priority is for projects that are designed to address the 
needs of military-connected students (as defined in this notice).

    Note: For purposes of this competition, projects meeting this 
priority must target military-connected students who are current or 
prospective public charter school students.


    Invitational Priority: For FY 2012 and any subsequent year in which 
we make awards from the list of unfunded applicants from this 
competition, this priority is an invitational priority. Under 34 CFR 
75.105(c)(1) we do not give an application that meets this invitational 
priority a competitive or

[[Page 22300]]

absolute preference over other applications.
    This priority is: Serving Students From Persistently Low-Performing 
Schools.
    The Secretary is particularly interested in projects that support 
turning around persistently low-performing schools. To meet this 
invitational priority, the proposed project should engage in one or 
both of the following types of activities: (1) The creation of a new 
charter school in the vicinity of one or more public schools identified 
for restructuring under section 1116(b)(8) of the Elementary and 
Secondary Education Act, as amended (ESEA), provided that this is done 
in coordination with the LEA's restructuring plan for the school(s); or 
(2) the creation of a new charter school under the restart model of 
intervention described under the Department's School Improvement Grants 
program. (See Final Requirements for School Improvement Grants, 75 FR 
66363 (Oct. 28, 2010) at http://www2.ed.gov/programs/sif/2010-27313.pdf.) Under this model, an LEA converts a school or closes and 
reopens a school under a charter school operator, a charter management 
organization, or an education management organization that has been 
selected through a rigorous review process.

    Note: For purposes of the first activity described in the 
priority, applicants in States operating under ESEA Flexibility may 
partner with LEAs to create new charter schools that serve students 
attending ``priority schools'' (see the September 23, 2011 ``ESEA 
Flexibility'' document at http://www.ed.gov/esea/flexibility/documents/esea-flexibility.doc). The term ``priority school'' means 
a school that has been identified by the State as a priority school 
pursuant to the State's approved request for ESEA flexibility.

Definitions

    The following definitions are taken from the notice of final 
supplemental priorities and definitions for discretionary grant 
programs, published in the Federal Register on December 15, 2010 (75 FR 
78486), and corrected on May 12, 2011 (76 FR 27637), and apply to this 
competition.
    1. Graduation rate means a four-year adjusted cohort graduation 
rate consistent with 34 CFR 200.19(b)(1) and may also include an 
extended-year adjusted cohort graduation rate consistent with 34 CFR 
200.19(b)(1)(v) if the State in which the proposed project is 
implemented has been approved by the Secretary to use such a rate under 
Title I of the ESEA.
    2. High-need children and high-need students means children and 
students at risk of educational failure, such as children and students 
who are living in poverty, who are English learners, who are far below 
grade level or who are not on track to becoming college- or career-
ready by graduation, who have left school or college before receiving, 
respectively, a regular high school diploma or a college degree or 
certificate, who are at risk of not graduating with a diploma on time, 
who are homeless, who are in foster care, who are pregnant or parenting 
teenagers, who have been incarcerated, who are new immigrants, who are 
migrant, or who have disabilities.
    3. High-poverty school means a school in which at least 50 percent 
of students are eligible for free or reduced-price lunches under the 
Richard B. Russell National School Lunch Act or in which at least 50 
percent of students are from low-income families as determined using 
one of the criteria specified under section 1113(a)(5) of the ESEA. For 
middle and high schools, eligibility may be calculated on the basis of 
comparable data from feeder schools. Eligibility as a high-poverty 
school under this definition is determined on the basis of the most 
currently available data.
    4. Military-connected student means (a) a child participating in an 
early learning program, a student in preschool through grade 12, or a 
student enrolled in postsecondary education or training who has a 
parent or guardian on active duty in the uniformed services (as defined 
by 37 U.S.C. 101, in the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps, Coast 
Guard, National Guard, or the reserve component of any of the 
aforementioned services) or (b) a student who is a veteran of the 
uniformed services, who is on active duty, or who is the spouse of an 
active-duty service member.
    5. Open educational resources means teaching, learning, and 
research resources that reside in the public domain or have been 
released under an intellectual property license that permits their free 
use or repurposing by others.
    6. Rural local educational agency means a local educational agency 
(LEA) that is eligible under the Small Rural School Achievement (SRSA) 
program or the Rural and Low-Income School (RLIS) program authorized 
under Title VI, Part B of the ESEA. Eligible applicants may determine 
whether a particular LEA is eligible for these programs by referring to 
information on the Department's Web site at http://www2.ed.gov/nclb/freedom/local/reap.html.
    Requirements: Applicants approved for funding under this 
competition must attend an in-person, two-day meeting for project 
directors during each year of the project.

    Note: Applicants are encouraged to include the cost of attending 
this meeting in their proposed budgets.


    Program Authority: 20 U.S.C. 7221-7221i; Consolidated 
Appropriations Act, 2012, Division F, Title III, Public Law 112-74.
    Applicable Regulations: (a) The Education Department General 
Administrative Regulations (EDGAR) in 34 CFR parts 74, 75, 76, 77, 79, 
80, 81, 82, 84, 85, 86, 97, 98, and 99.
    (b) The notice of final supplemental priorities and definitions for 
discretionary grant programs published in the Federal Register on 
December 15, 2010 (75 FR 78486), and corrected on May 12, 2011 (76 FR 
27637).

    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 only to 
institutions of higher education.


II. Award Information

    Type of Award: Discretionary grants.
    Estimated Available Funds: The FY 2012 appropriation for the CSP is 
$255,036,069, of which we intend to use an estimated $3,000,000 for 
this competition for non-SEA eligible applicants.
    Contingent upon the availability of funds and quality of 
applications, we may make additional awards in FY 2013 from the list of 
unfunded applications from this competition.
    Estimated Range of Awards: $140,000 to $200,000 per year.
    Estimated Average Size of Awards: $175,000 per year.
    Estimated Number of Awards: 15-19.

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


    Project Period: Up to 36 months for planning, program design, and 
initial implementation grants under CFDA number 84.282B. Up to 24 
months for dissemination grants under CFDA number 84.282C.

    Note: For planning, program design, and initial implementation 
grants awarded by the Secretary to non-SEA eligible applicants under 
CFDA number 84.282B, no more than 18 months may be used for planning 
and program design and no more than two years may be used for the 
initial implementation of a charter school.


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III. Eligibility Information

    1. Eligible Applicants:
    (a) Planning, Program Design, and Initial Implementation grants 
(CFDA number 84.282B): A developer that has (1) applied to an 
authorized public chartering authority to operate a charter school; and 
(2) provided adequate and timely notice to that authority under section 
5203(d)(3) of the ESEA (20 U.S.C. 7221b(d)(3)). In accordance with 
section 5203(d)(3) of the ESEA, an applicant for a pre-charter planning 
grant may include, in section V of its application, a request for a 
waiver from the Secretary of the requirement that the eligible 
applicant provide its authorized public chartering authority timely 
notice, and a copy, of its application for CSP funds (20 U.S.C. 
7221b(d)(3)).

    Note: Section 5210 of the ESEA (20 U.S.C. 7221i(2)) defines a 
``Developer'' as an individual or group of individuals (including a 
public or private nonprofit organization), which may include 
teachers, administrators and other school staff, parents, or other 
members of the local community in which a charter school project 
will be carried out. The charter school must be located in a State 
with a State statute specifically authorizing the establishment of 
charter schools and in which the SEA elects not to participate in 
the CSP or does not have an application approved under the CSP.


    (b) Dissemination grants (CFDA number 84.282C): Charter schools, as 
defined in section 5210(1) of the ESEA (20 U.S.C. 7221i(1)), that have 
been in operation for at least three consecutive years and have 
demonstrated overall success, including--
    (1) Substantial progress in improving student academic achievement;
    (2) High levels of parent satisfaction; and
    (3) The management and leadership necessary to overcome initial 
start-up problems and establish a thriving, financially viable charter 
school.

    Note: Consistent with section 5204(f)(6) of the ESEA (20 U.S.C. 
7221c(f)(6)), a charter school may apply for funds to carry out 
dissemination activities, whether or not the charter school 
previously applied for or received funds under the CSP for planning, 
program design, or implementation.


    Note: These competitions (CFDA numbers 84.282B and 84.282C) are 
limited to eligible applicants in States in which the SEA does not 
have an approved application under the CSP (or will not have an 
approved application as of October 1, 2012). The following States 
currently have approved applications under the CSP: Arizona, 
Arkansas, California, Colorado, District of Columbia, Florida, 
Georgia, Indiana, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, New 
Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Rhode Island, South Carolina, 
Tennessee, Texas, and Wisconsin.


    Eligible applicants, including charter schools, located in States 
with currently approved CSP applications that are interested in 
participating in the CSP should contact the SEA for information related 
to the State's CSP subgrant competition. Further information is 
available at http://www2.ed.gov/about/offices/list/oii/csp/funding.html.
    2. Cost Sharing or Matching: This program does not require cost 
sharing or matching.

IV. Application and Submission Information

    1. Address to Request Application Package: LaShawndra Thornton, 
U.S. Department of Education, 400 Maryland Avenue SW., room 4W257, 
Washington, DC 20202-5970. Telephone: (202) 453-5617 or by email: 
lashawndra.thornton@ed.gov.
    If you use a telecommunications device for the deaf (TDD) or a text 
telephone (TTY), call the Federal Relay Service (FRS), toll free, at 1-
800-877-8339.
    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 program contact person listed in 
this section.
    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. The Secretary strongly encourages 
applicants to limit Part III to the equivalent of no more than 50 
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.
    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, you must 
include all of the application narrative in Part III.
    3. Submission Dates and Times:
    Applications Available: April 13, 2012.
    Date of Pre-Application Webinar: The Department will hold a pre-
application webinar for prospective applicants on the following dates:
    1. April 24, 2012, 3 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.;
    2. April 26, 2012, 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.;
    3. May 3, 2012, 3 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.; and
    4. May 9, 2012, 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. (all times are Washington, DC 
time).
    Individuals interested in attending one of the webinars are 
encouraged to pre-register by emailing their name, organization, 
contact information, and preferred webinar date and time with the 
subject heading NON-SEA PRE-APPLICATION MEETING to 
Charterschools@ed.gov. There is no registration fee for attending this 
webinar.
    For further information about the pre-application webinar, contact 
LaShawndra Thornton, U.S. Department of Education, 400 Maryland Avenue 
SW., room 4W257, Washington, DC 20202-5970. Telephone: (202) 453-5617 
or by email: lashawndra.thornton@ed.gov.
    Deadline for Transmittal of Applications: June 6, 2012.
    Applications for grants under this program 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 5, 2012.

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    4. Intergovernmental Review: This competition 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:
    Use of Funds for Post-Award Planning and Design of the Educational 
Program and Initial Implementation of the Charter School. A non-SEA 
eligible applicant receiving a grant under CFDA number 84.282B may use 
the grant funds only for--
    (a) Post-award planning and design of the educational program, 
which may include (i) refinement of the desired educational results and 
of the methods for measuring progress toward achieving those results; 
and (ii) professional development of teachers and other staff who will 
work in the charter school; and
    (b) Initial implementation of the charter school, which may include 
(i) Informing the community about the school; (ii) acquiring necessary 
equipment and educational materials and supplies; (iii) acquiring or 
developing curriculum materials; and (iv) other initial operational 
costs that cannot be met from State or local sources. (20 U.S.C. 
7221c(f)(3))

    Note: CSP funds may be used only for the planning and initial 
implementation of a charter school. As a general matter, the 
Secretary considers charter schools that have been in operation for 
more than three years to be past the initial implementation phase 
and, therefore, ineligible to receive CSP funds to support the 
initial implementation of a charter school.


    Use of Funds for Dissemination Activities. A charter school 
receiving a grant under CFDA number 84.282C may use grant funds to 
assist other schools in adapting the charter school's program (or 
certain aspects of the charter school's program), or to disseminate 
information about the charter school, through such activities as--
    (a) Assisting other individuals with the planning and start-up of 
one or more new public schools, including charter schools, that are 
independent of the assisting charter school and the assisting charter 
school's developers, and that agree to be held to at least as high a 
level of accountability as the assisting charter school;
    (b) Developing partnerships with other public schools, including 
charter schools, designed to improve student academic achievement in 
each of the schools participating in the partnership;
    (c) Developing curriculum materials, assessments, and other 
materials that promote increased student achievement and are based on 
successful practices within the assisting charter school; and
    (d) Conducting evaluations and developing materials that document 
the successful practices of the assisting charter school and that are 
designed to improve student performance in other schools. (20 U.S.C. 
7221c(f)(6))
    We reference additional regulations outlining funding restrictions 
in the Applicable Regulations section in this notice.
    6. Data Universal Numbering System Number, Taxpayer Identification 
Number, and Central Contractor Registry: To do business with the 
Department of Education, you must--
    a. Have a Data Universal Numbering System (DUNS) number and a 
Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN);
    b. Register both your DUNS number and TIN with the Central 
Contractor Registry (CCR), the Government's primary registrant 
database;
    c. Provide your DUNS number and TIN on your application; and
    d. Maintain an active CCR registration with current information 
while your application is under review by the Department and, if you 
are awarded a grant, during the project period.
    You can obtain a DUNS number from Dun and Bradstreet. A DUNS number 
can be created within one business day.
    If you are a corporate entity, agency, institution, or 
organization, you can obtain a TIN from the Internal Revenue Service. 
If you are an individual, you can obtain a TIN from the Internal 
Revenue Service or the Social Security Administration. If you need a 
new TIN, please allow 2-5 weeks for your TIN to become active.
    The CCR registration process may take five or more business days to 
complete. If you are currently registered with the CCR, you may not 
need to make any changes. However, please make certain that the TIN 
associated with your DUNS number is correct. Also note that you will 
need to update your CCR registration on an annual basis. This may take 
three or more business days to complete.
    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 in the 
Grants.gov 3-Step Registration Guide (see www.grants.gov/section910/Grants.govRegistrationBrochure.pdf).
    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 CSP, CFDA Numbers 84.282B and 
84.282C, 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 CSP at 
www.Grants.gov. You must search for the downloadable application 
package for this program by the CFDA number. Do not include the CFDA 
number's alpha suffix in your search (e.g., search for 84.282, not 
84.282B or 282C).
    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.

[[Page 22303]]

     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 program 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 http://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.
     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 exception 
prevent 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: LaShawndra Thornton, 
U.S. Department of Education, 400 Maryland Avenue SW., Room 4W257, 
Washington, DC 20202-5970. Fax: (202) 205-5630.
    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 84.282B or 84.282C), 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

[[Page 22304]]

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 84.282B or 84.282C), 550 12th Street SW., Room 7041, 
Potomac Center Plaza, Washington, DC 20202-4260.
    The Application Control Center accepts hand deliveries daily 
between 8 a.m. and 4:30:00 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. Application Requirements. An applicant applying for CSP grant 
funds, under either CFDA number 84.282B or 84.282C, must address the 
following application requirements, which are based on 20 U.S.C. 
7221b(b), as well as the applicable selection criteria in this notice, 
and may choose to respond to the application requirements in the 
context of its responses to the selection criteria.
    (i) Describe the educational program to be implemented by the 
proposed charter school, including how the program will enable all 
students to meet challenging State student academic achievement 
standards, the grade levels or ages of children to be served, and the 
curriculum and instructional practices to be used;
    (ii) Describe how the charter school will be managed;
    (iii) Describe the objectives of the charter school and the methods 
by which the charter school will determine its progress toward 
achieving those objectives;
    (iv) Describe the administrative relationship between the charter 
school and the authorized public chartering agency;
    (v) Describe how parents and other members of the community will be 
involved in the planning, program design, and implementation of the 
charter school;
    (vi) Describe how the authorized public chartering agency will 
provide for continued operation of the charter school once the Federal 
grant has expired, if that agency determines that the charter school 
has met its objectives as described in paragraph (iii) of this section;
    (vii) If the charter school desires the Secretary to consider 
waivers under the authority of the CSP, include a request and 
justification for waivers of any Federal statutory or regulatory 
provisions that the applicant believes are necessary for the successful 
operation of the charter school, and a description of any State or 
local rules, generally applicable to public schools, that will be 
waived for, or otherwise not apply to, the school. Each applicant for a 
pre-charter planning grant that is requesting a waiver of the 
requirement under section 5203(d)(3) of the ESEA (20 U.S.C. 
7221b(d)(3)) that an eligible applicant provide its authorized public 
chartering agency with notice, and a copy, of its CSP application 
should indicate whether it has applied for a charter previously and, if 
so, the name of the authorized public chartering authority and the 
disposition of the charter application;
    (viii) Describe how the grant funds will be used, including a 
description of how these funds will be used in conjunction with other 
Federal programs administered by the Secretary;
    (ix) Describe how students in the community will be informed about 
the charter school and be given an equal opportunity to attend the 
charter school;
    (x) Describe how a charter school that is considered an LEA under 
State law, or an LEA in which a charter school is located, will comply 
with sections 613(a)(5) and 613(e)(1)(B) of the Individuals with 
Disabilities Education Act (IDEA); and

    Note: For more information on IDEA, please see http://idea.ed.gov/explore/view/p/%2Croot%2Cstatute%2CI%2CB%2C613%2C.

    (xi) If the eligible applicant desires to use grant funds for 
dissemination activities under section 5202(c)(2)(c) of the ESEA (20 
U.S.C. 7221a(c)(2)(C)), describe those activities and how those 
activities will involve charter schools and other public schools, LEAs, 
developers, and potential developers.
    2. Selection Criteria: The selection criteria for this competition 
are from 20 U.S.C. 7221b and 7221c and 34 CFR 75.210 of EDGAR.
    The selection criteria for applicants submitting applications under 
CFDA number 84.282B are listed in paragraph (a) of this section, and 
the selection criteria for applicants submitting applications under 
CFDA number 84.282C are listed in paragraph (b) of this section.
    (a) Selection Criteria for Planning, Program Design, and Initial 
Implementation Grants (CFDA number 84.282B). The following selection 
criteria are based on sections 5203, 5204, and 5210 of the ESEA (20 
U.S.C. 7221b, 7221c, and 7221i) and from 34 CFR 75.210 of EDGAR. The 
maximum possible score for addressing all of the criteria in this 
section is 100 points. The maximum possible score for addressing each 
criterion is indicated in parentheses following the criterion. In 
evaluating an application for a planning, program design, and 
implementation grant, the Secretary considers the following criteria:
    (i) Quality of the proposed curriculum and instructional practices 
(20 U.S.C. 7221c(b)(1)) (15 points).

    Note: The Secretary encourages the applicant to describe the 
quality of the educational program to be implemented by the proposed 
charter school, including how the program will enable all students 
to meet challenging State student academic achievement standards, 
the grade levels or ages of students to be served, and the 
curriculum and instructional practices to be used. If the curriculum 
and instructional practices have been successfully used in other 
schools operated or managed by the applicant, the Secretary 
encourages the applicant to describe the implementation of such 
practices and the academic results achieved.


    (ii) The extent to which the proposed project will assist 
educationally disadvantaged students in meeting State academic content 
standards and State student academic achievement standards (20 U.S.C. 
7221c(a)(1)) (3 points).
    (iii) The quality of the strategy for assessing achievement of the 
charter school's objectives (20 U.S.C. 7221c(a)(4)) (15 points).
    (iv) The extent of community support for the application (20 U.S.C. 
7221c(b)(3)) (8 points).

    Note: The Secretary encourages the applicant to describe how 
parents and other members of the community will be informed about 
the charter school and how students

[[Page 22305]]

will be given an equal opportunity to attend the charter school.
    The applicant is also encouraged to describe and provide 
evidence of community support for the proposed project.


    (v) The extent to which the proposed project encourages parental 
and community involvement (20 U.S.C. 7221b(b)(3)(E)) (3 points).

    Note: The Secretary encourages the applicant to describe how 
parents and other members of the community will be involved in the 
planning, program design, and implementation of the charter school.


    (vi) Quality of project personnel (34 CFR 75.210(e)(1), (e)(2), and 
(e)(3)(ii)) (22 points).
    The Secretary considers the quality of the personnel who will carry 
out the proposed project. In determining the quality of project 
personnel, the Secretary considers--
    (1) The extent to which the applicant encourages applications for 
employment from persons who are members of groups that have 
traditionally been underrepresented based on race, color, national 
origin, gender, age, or disability (2 points); and
    (2) The qualifications, including relevant training and experience, 
of key project personnel (20 points).

    Note: The applicant is encouraged to provide evidence of its 
skills and experience in the following areas: successfully launching 
a high-quality charter school; developing an innovative school 
design; relevant non-profit organization management and leadership; 
sound board governance; effective curriculum development and 
implementation; and strong fiscal management.


    (vii) Quality of the management plan (34 CFR 75.210(g)(1) and 
(g)(2)(i)) (16 points). The Secretary considers the quality of the 
management plan for the proposed project. In determining the quality of 
the management plan for the proposed project, the Secretary considers 
the adequacy of the management plan to achieve the objectives of the 
proposed project on time and within budget, including clearly defined 
responsibilities, timelines, and milestones for accomplishing project 
tasks.
    (viii) Existence and quality of a charter or performance contract 
between the charter school and its authorized public chartering agency 
(20 U.S.C. 7221i(1)(L)) (15 points). The existence of a charter or 
performance contract between the charter school and its authorized 
public chartering agency and the extent to which the charter or 
performance contract describes how student performance will be measured 
in the charter school pursuant to State assessments that are required 
of public schools and pursuant to any other assessments mutually 
agreeable to the authorized public chartering agency and the charter 
school.

    Note:  The Secretary encourages the applicant to discuss whether 
its proposed project has been denied a charter from its authorizing 
agency and, if so, how the applicant plans to revise its charter 
application before resubmitting its charter application to the 
authorizing agency. The applicant is also encouraged to submit a 
copy of its approved charter contract, if applicable.


    (ix) The degree of flexibility afforded by the SEA and, if 
applicable, the LEA to the charter school (20 U.S.C. 7721c(b)(2)) (3 
points).

    Note: The Secretary encourages the applicant to include a 
description of the flexibility afforded under its State's law in 
terms of establishing an administrative relationship between the 
charter school and the authorized public chartering agency and in 
terms of whether charter schools are exempt from significant State 
or local rules that inhibit the flexible operation and management of 
public schools.


    The Secretary also encourages the applicant to include a 
description of the degree of autonomy the charter school will have over 
such matters as the charter school's budget, expenditures, daily 
operation, and personnel in accordance with its State's charter school 
law.
    (b) Selection Criteria for Dissemination Grants (CFDA number 
84.282C). The following selection criteria are based on sections 5204 
and 5210(1)(L) of the ESEA (20 U.S.C. 7221c and 7221i(1)(L)) and from 
34 CFR 75.210 of EDGAR. The maximum possible score for addressing all 
the criteria in this section is 100 points. The maximum possible score 
for addressing each criterion is indicated in parentheses following the 
criterion. In evaluating an application for a dissemination grant, the 
Secretary considers the following criteria:
    (i) The quality of the proposed dissemination activities and the 
likelihood that those activities will improve student achievement (20 
U.S.C. 7221c(b)(7)) (15 points).

    Note:  The Secretary encourages the applicant to describe the 
objectives for the proposed dissemination activities and the methods 
by which the charter school will determine its progress toward 
achieving those objectives.


    (ii) Existence of a charter or performance contract between the 
charter school and its authorized public chartering agency (20 U.S.C. 
7221i(1)(L)) (1 point). The existence of a charter or performance 
contract between the charter school and its authorized public 
chartering agency and the extent to which the charter or performance 
contract describes how student performance will be measured in the 
charter school pursuant to State assessments that are required of other 
schools and pursuant to any other assessments mutually agreeable to the 
authorized public chartering agency and the charter school.
    (iii) Demonstration of success (20 U.S.C. 7221c(f)(6)(A)) (40 
points). The extent to which the school has demonstrated overall 
success, including--
    (1) Substantial progress in improving student achievement (25 
points);
    (2) High levels of parent satisfaction (5 points); and
    (3) The management and leadership necessary to overcome initial 
start-up problems and establish a thriving, financially viable charter 
school (10 points).
    (iv) Dissemination strategy (34 CFR 75.210(b)(2)(xii)) (15 points). 
The Secretary considers the significance of the proposed project. In 
determining the significance of the proposed project, the Secretary 
considers the extent to which the results of the proposed project are 
to be disseminated in ways that will enable others to use the 
information or strategies.
    (v) Quality of project personnel (34 CFR 75.210(e)(1), (e)(2), and 
(e)(3)(i)) (14 points). The Secretary considers the quality of the 
personnel who will carry out the proposed project. In determining the 
quality of project personnel, the Secretary considers--
    (1) The extent to which the applicant encourages applications for 
employment from persons who are members of groups that have 
traditionally been underrepresented based on race, color, national 
origin, gender, age, or disability (3 points); and
    (2) The qualifications, including relevant training and experience, 
of the project director or principal investigator (11 points).
    (vi) Quality of the management plan (34 CFR 75.210 (g)(1) and 
(g)(2)(i)) (15 points). The Secretary considers the quality of the 
management plan for the proposed project. In determining the quality of 
the management plan for the proposed project, the Secretary considers 
the adequacy of the management plan to achieve the objectives of the 
proposed project on time and within budget, including clearly defined 
responsibilities, timelines, and milestones for accomplishing project 
tasks.

[[Page 22306]]

    4. 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).
    5. Special Conditions: Under 34 CFR 74.14 and 80.12, the Secretary 
may impose special conditions on a grant if the applicant or grantee is 
not financially stable; has a history of unsatisfactory performance; 
has a financial or other management system that does not meet the 
standards in 34 CFR parts 74 or 80, as applicable; has not fulfilled 
the conditions of a prior grant; or is otherwise not responsible.

VI. Award Administration Information

    1. Award Notices: If your application is successful, we notify your 
U.S. Representative and U.S. Senators and send you a Grant Award 
Notification (GAN). We may notify you informally, also.
    If your application is not evaluated or not selected for funding, 
we notify you.
    2. Administrative and National Policy Requirements: We identify 
administrative and national policy requirements in the application 
package and reference these and other requirements in the Applicable 
Regulations section of this notice.
    We reference the regulations outlining the terms and conditions of 
an award in the Applicable Regulations section of this notice and 
include these and other specific conditions in the GAN. The GAN also 
incorporates your approved application as part of your binding 
commitments under the grant.
    3. Reporting: (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 CSP is to support the 
creation and development of a large number of high-quality charter 
schools that are free from State or local rules that inhibit flexible 
operation, are held accountable for enabling students to reach 
challenging State performance standards, and are open to all students. 
The Secretary has two performance indicators to measure progress toward 
this goal: (1) The number of high-quality charter schools in operation 
around the Nation, and (2) the percentage of fourth- and eighth-grade 
charter school students who are achieving at or above the proficient 
level on State examinations in mathematics and reading/language arts. 
Additionally, the Secretary has established the following measure to 
examine the efficiency of the CSP: Federal cost per student in 
implementing a successful school (defined as a school in operation for 
three or more consecutive years).
    All grantees must submit an annual performance report with 
information that is responsive to these performance 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 award, 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: LaShawndra Thornton, U.S. Department 
of Education, 400 Maryland Avenue SW., room 4W257, Washington, DC 
20202-5970. Telephone: (202) 453-5617 or by email: 
lashawndra.thornton@ed.gov.
    If you use a TDD, call the FRS, toll free, at 1-800-877-8339.

VIII. Other Information

    Accessible Format: Individuals with disabilities can obtain this 
document and a copy of the application package in an accessible format 
(e.g., braille, large print, audiotape, or compact disc) on request to 
the program contact person listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT 
in section VII of this notice.
    Electronic Access to This Document: The official version of this 
document is the document published in the Federal Register. Free 
Internet access to the official edition of the Federal Register and the 
Code of Federal Regulations is available via the Federal Digital System 
at: 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 10, 2012.
James H. Shelton, III,
Assistant Deputy Secretary for Innovation and Improvement.
[FR Doc. 2012-8980 Filed 4-12-12; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4000-01-P