Applications for New Awards; Personnel Development To Improve Services and Results for Children With Disabilities-National Center for Improving Teacher and Leader Performance To Better Serve Children With Disabilities, 23207-23215 [2017-10423]

Download as PDF Federal Register / Vol. 82, No. 97 / Monday, May 22, 2017 / Notices to the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) for the Three Rivers Feasibility Study, Arkansas and Desha Counties, Arkansas. An agency scoping meeting and Planning Charette were held on August 11th and September 9– 11, 2015, respectively, to gather input on the scope of the analysis, identify possible alternatives and significant issues to be evaluated in the Draft EIS, as well as, the identification of cooperating agencies. A public news release announcing an open comment period was released September 22, 2015 to solicit public comments from interested parties relating to navigation and ecosystem restoration opportunities within the study area. Since that time, in the course of project planning and preliminary impact analysis, it no longer appears that impacts associated with project implementation would rise to a level necessitating an EIS. In compliance with the NEPA, the Little Rock District will be preparing an Environmental Assessment to address the impacts of the proposed action and alternatives. Therefore, the Little Rock District is withdrawing the NOI to prepare a Draft EIS. Robert G. Dixon, Colonel, U.S. Army, District Engineer. [FR Doc. 2017–10352 Filed 5–19–17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3720–58–P DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION Applications for New Awards; Personnel Development To Improve Services and Results for Children With Disabilities—National Center for Improving Teacher and Leader Performance To Better Serve Children With Disabilities Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services, Department of Education. ACTION: Notice. AGENCY: The Department of Education is issuing a notice inviting applications for new awards for fiscal year (FY) 2017 for Personnel Development to Improve Services and Results for Children with Disabilities—National Center for Improving Teacher and Leader Performance to Better Serve Children with Disabilities, Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) number 84.325A. DATES: Applications Available: May 22, 2017. Deadline for Transmittal of Applications: July 6, 2017. Deadline for Intergovernmental Review: September 5, 2017. mstockstill on DSK30JT082PROD with NOTICES SUMMARY: VerDate Sep<11>2014 23:17 May 19, 2017 Jkt 241001 FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Bonnie Jones, U.S. Department of Education, 400 Maryland Avenue SW., Room 5127, Potomac Center Plaza, Washington, DC 20202–5108. Telephone: (202) 245–7395. 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. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Full Text of Announcement I. Funding Opportunity Description Purpose of Program: The purposes of this program are to: (1) Help address State-identified needs for personnel preparation in special education, early intervention, related services, and regular education to work with children, including infants and toddlers, with disabilities; and (2) ensure that those personnel have the necessary skills and knowledge, derived from practices that have been determined through scientifically based research and experience, to be successful in serving those children. Priority: In accordance with 34 CFR 75.105(b)(2)(v), this priority is from allowable activities specified in the statute (see sections 662 and 681 of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA)). Absolute Priority: For FY 2017 and any subsequent year in which we make awards from the list of unfunded applications 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: National Center for Improving Teacher and Leader Performance to Better Serve Children with Disabilities. Background: Meeting the diverse needs of students with disabilities in inclusive classrooms and other school settings requires a complex combination of knowledge and skills, including the use of practices supported by evidence. Organizations such as the Council of Chief State School Officers and the Council for Exceptional Children, therefore, have developed model standards of essential knowledge and skills that they believe teachers need in order to customize learning and be effective in improving student achievement, including the achievement of students with disabilities. In 2015, the National Policy Board for Educational Administration adopted a new set of professional standards for leaders, known as the Professional Standards for Education Leaders. These standards describe the PO 00000 Frm 00038 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 23207 knowledge and skills education leaders need to ensure every student is prepared for the 21st century. The curricula in teacher and leader preparation programs must be better aligned with State standards that reflect current knowledge and skills and the use of practices supported by evidence. Further, under the Higher Education Act of 1965, as amended (HEA), States must annually report on the quality of teacher preparation programs, identify low-performing programs, and provide them with technical assistance (TA). States will need high-quality TA for these activities. Finally, under the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (ESEA), as amended by the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), States must ensure that low-income and minority students are not served at disproportionate rates by ineffective, out-of-field, or inexperienced teachers. In addition, teacher and school leader incentive programs are authorized under Title II of the ESSA, and the Title II set-aside allows a variety of activities, including reforming teacher and leader certification, teacher evaluation, alternative certification, recruitment and retention, professional development (PD), and the TA provided to local educational agencies (LEAs). State educational agencies (SEAs) and institutions of higher education (IHEs) need high-quality TA to carry out these reform efforts. This competition will fund a national center to assist SEAs, IHEs, and LEAs, in addressing all of these needs to help ensure that teachers and leaders have the necessary knowledge and skills to successfully meet the diverse needs of students with disabilities. Priority: The purpose of this priority is to fund a cooperative agreement to establish and operate a national center for improving teacher and leader performance to better serve children with disabilities to achieve, at a minimum, the following outcomes: (a) Improved capacity of States to review and strengthen certification or licensure standards and requirements, in collaboration with IHEs and LEAs that operate teacher and leader preparation programs, in order to ensure that these standards: (1) Are derived from frameworks and practices supported by evidence; and (2) reflect the knowledge and skills necessary for teachers and leaders to successfully serve students with disabilities in inclusive classrooms and school settings, including, at a minimum, competencies in evidence-based E:\FR\FM\22MYN1.SGM 22MYN1 mstockstill on DSK30JT082PROD with NOTICES 23208 Federal Register / Vol. 82, No. 97 / Monday, May 22, 2017 / Notices interventions in reading, math, behavior, and school climate. (b) Improved capacity of States to adopt and implement rigorous program approval standards for teacher and leader preparation programs. (c) Increased capacity of IHEs to embed practices and frameworks supported by evidence and aligned to State licensure or certification requirements, into their preparation programs. (d) Increased capacity of SEAs and IHEs to use data from a variety of sources, including student data attributed to teachers and leaders who successfully exit preparation programs, to inform continuous improvement of those programs. (e) Increased capacity of SEAs to align and implement statewide plans (e.g., Educator Equity Plans and State Systemic Improvement Plans, State Quality Rating and Improvement Systems) to include certification or licensure reform and IHE teacher and leader program reform to improve outcomes for students with disabilities. In addition to these programmatic requirements, to be considered for funding under this priority, applicants must meet the application and administrative requirements in this priority, which are: (a) Demonstrate, in the narrative section of the application under ‘‘Significance of the Project,’’ how the proposed project will— (1) Support States to reform certification or licensure standards and program approval standards, to include practices and frameworks supported by evidence, consisting of, at a minimum, competencies in evidence-based interventions in reading, math, behavior, and school climate; and identify effective strategies for achieving institutional change and reform in IHEs and LEAs that prepare teachers and leaders. To meet these requirements the applicant must— (i) Present applicable national and State data demonstrating the current needs of States to reform teacher and leader certification or licensure standards and program approval standards to include practices and frameworks supported by evidence to ensure teachers and leaders are fully prepared to serve students with disabilities in inclusive classrooms and school settings; (ii) Demonstrate knowledge of current certification and licensure issues, including portability and reciprocity, multi-tiered licensure systems, and credentialing structures; and (iii) Demonstrate knowledge of the current need for preparation of teachers VerDate Sep<11>2014 23:17 May 19, 2017 Jkt 241001 and leaders to address the complex roles they share in providing instruction in schoolwide frameworks such as MultiTiered Systems of Support (MTSS); (2) Demonstrate knowledge of, and previous experience with, using effective approaches to disseminate knowledge, tools, and resources to SEAs, LEAs, and technical assistance (TA) providers; and (3) Demonstrate knowledge of, and previous experience with, implementing TA strategies that are intensive and specialized. (b) Demonstrate, in the narrative section of the application under ‘‘Quality of the Project Services,’’ how the proposed project will— (1) Ensure equal access and treatment for members of groups that have traditionally been underrepresented based on race, color, national origin, gender, age, or disability. To meet this requirement, the applicant must describe how it will— (i) Identify the needs of the intended recipients for TA and information; and (ii) Ensure that services and products meet the needs of the intended recipients of the grant; (2) Achieve its goals, objectives, and OSEP-specified outcomes. To meet this requirement, the applicant must provide— (i) Measurable intended project outcomes; and (ii) The logic model by which the proposed project will achieve its intended outcomes. A logic model used in connection with this priority communicates how a project will achieve its intended outcomes and provides a framework for both the formative and summative evaluations of the project; (3) Use a conceptual framework to develop project plans and activities, describing any underlying concepts, assumptions, expectations, beliefs, or theories, as well as the presumed relationships or linkages among these variables, and any empirical support for this framework; Note: Rather than use the definition of ‘‘logic model’’ in 34 CFR 77.1(c), OSEP uses the definition in paragraph (b)(2)(ii) of these application requirements. This definition, unlike the definition in 34 CFR 77.1(c), differentiates between logic models and conceptual frameworks. The following Web sites provide more information on logic models: www.osepideasthatwork.org/ logicModel and www.osepideasthatwork.org/ resources-grantees/program-areas/ta-ta/tadproject-logic-model-and-conceptualframework. (4) Be based on current research and make use of practices supported by evidence. To meet this requirement, the applicant must describe— PO 00000 Frm 00039 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 (i) The current research on systems change and capacity building within SEAs and IHEs that will inform the TA provided to SEAs and IHEs that undertake alignment and reform efforts; (ii) The current research about adult learning principles and implementation science that will inform the proposed TA; and (iii) How the proposed project will incorporate current research and practices, strategies, and frameworks supported by evidence into the development and delivery of its products and services; (5) Develop products and provide services that are of high quality and sufficient intensity and duration to achieve the intended outcomes of the proposed project. To address this requirement, the applicant must describe— (i) Its proposed approach to universal, general TA,1 which must identify the intended recipients of the products and services under this approach, and include a plan for ensuring SEAs and IHEs can easily access and use products and services developed by the proposed project; (ii) Its proposed approach to targeted, specialized TA,2 which must identify— (A) The intended recipients of the products and services under this approach; (B) Its proposed approach to measure the readiness of potential targeted TA recipients to work with the project, assessing, at a minimum, their current infrastructure, available resources, and ability to build capacity for ongoing reform and continuous improvement at the SEA and IHE levels; (C) The process by which the project will select, and provide targeted TA to, SEAs and IHEs. This targeted TA must support SEA capacity to initiate, scale 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 onetime, 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. 2 ‘‘Targeted, specialized TA’’ means TA services 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 laborintensive 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. E:\FR\FM\22MYN1.SGM 22MYN1 Federal Register / Vol. 82, No. 97 / Monday, May 22, 2017 / Notices mstockstill on DSK30JT082PROD with NOTICES up, and sustain alignment and reform efforts; and (D) The process the proposed project will use to collaborate with other relevant TA centers and national organizations, as appropriate, to develop and implement targeted TA strategies in order to reduce duplication of effort and maximize efficiency; (iv) Its proposed approach to intensive, sustained TA,3 which must identify— (A) The intended recipients of the products and services under this approach; (B) Its proposed approach to measure the readiness of the SEAs and IHE teacher and leader preparation programs to work with the project, including their commitment to the initiative, alignment of the initiative to their needs, current infrastructure, available resources, and ability to build capacity at SEA and IHE levels; and (C) The process by which the project will select, and provide ongoing intensive TA to, SEAs and IHEs that are positioned to engage in systemic reform efforts. This intensive TA must support SEA capacity to scale up and sustain ongoing alignment and reform of certification or licensure standards and initial program approval and reauthorization standards. Intensive TA must also support IHE capacity to scale up and sustain preparation program reform efforts to better serve students with disabilities, using data to inform ongoing improvement efforts; (6) Develop products and implement services that maximize efficiency. To address this requirement, the applicant must describe— (i) How the proposed project will use technology to achieve the intended project outcomes; (ii) With whom the proposed project will collaborate and the intended outcomes of this collaboration (including working from a single TA plan when appropriate). The description should include how the proposed project will provide PD to other TA centers on available tools and resources to leverage and extend the reach of its TA; and (iii) How the proposed project will use non-project resources to achieve the intended project outcomes. 3 ‘‘Intensive, sustained TA’’ means TA services often provided on-site 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. VerDate Sep<11>2014 23:17 May 19, 2017 Jkt 241001 (c) In the narrative section of the application under ‘‘Quality of the Evaluation Plan,’’ include an evaluation plan for the project. The evaluation plan must describe: Measures of progress in implementation, including the criteria for determining the extent to which the project’s products and services have reached its target population; measures of intended outcomes or results of the project’s activities in order to evaluate those activities; and how well the goals or objectives of the proposed project, as described in its logic model, have been met. (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, 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. (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 applicable; and (ii) Timelines and milestones for accomplishing the project tasks; (2) Key project personnel and any consultants and subcontractors will be allocated and how these allocations are appropriate and adequate to achieve the project’s intended outcomes; (3) The proposed management plan will ensure that the products and services provided are of high quality, relevant, and useful to recipients; and (4) The proposed project will benefit from a diversity of perspectives, including those of families, educators, TA providers, researchers, and policy makers, among others, in its development and operation. PO 00000 Frm 00040 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 23209 (f) Address the following application requirements. The applicant must— (1) Include, in Appendix A, a logic model that depicts, at a minimum, the goals, activities, outputs, and intended outcomes of the proposed project; (2) Include, in Appendix A, a conceptual framework for the project; (3) Include, in Appendix A, personnel-loading charts and timelines, as applicable, 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 in Washington, DC, after receipt of the award, and an annual planning meeting 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) Four annual two-day trips to attend Department briefings, Department-sponsored conferences, and other meetings, as requested by OSEP; and (iv) A one-day intensive 3+2 review meeting in Washington, DC, 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 and approved by the OSEP project officer. 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; (6) Maintain a Web site that meets government or industry-recognized standards for accessibility; and (7) Include, in Appendix A, an assurance to assist OSEP with the transfer of pertinent resources and products and to maintain the continuity of services to States during the transition to this new award period, as appropriate. 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— E:\FR\FM\22MYN1.SGM 22MYN1 23210 Federal Register / Vol. 82, No. 97 / Monday, May 22, 2017 / Notices (a) The recommendation of a 3+2 review team consisting of experts selected by the Secretary. This review will be conducted during a one-day intensive meeting that will be held during the last half of the second year of the project period. (b) The success and timeliness with which the requirements of the negotiated cooperative agreement have been or are being met by the project. (c) The quality, relevance, and usefulness of the project’s products and services and the extent to which the project’s products and services are aligned with the project’s objectives and likely to result in the project achieving its intended outcomes. Definitions: For the purposes of this priority: Strong theory means a rationale for the proposed process, product, strategy, or practice that includes a logic model. Supported by evidence means supported by at least strong theory. 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. 1462 and 1481. Applicable Regulations: (a) The Education Department General Administrative Regulations in 34 CFR parts 75, 77, 79, 81, 82, 84, 86, 97, 98, and 99. (b) The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Guidelines to Agencies on Governmentwide Debarment and Suspension (Nonprocurement) in 2 CFR part 180, as adopted and amended as regulations of the Department in 2 CFR part 3485. (c) The Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards in 2 CFR part 200, as adopted and amended as regulations of the Department in 2 CFR part 3474. (d) The regulations for this program in 34 CFR part 304. mstockstill on DSK30JT082PROD with NOTICES 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 IHEs only. II. Award Information Type of Award: Cooperative agreement. Estimated Available Funds: The Administration has requested $83,700,000 for the Personnel VerDate Sep<11>2014 23:17 May 19, 2017 Jkt 241001 Development to Improve Services and Results for Children with Disabilities program for FY 2017, of which we intend to use an estimated $4,250,000 for this competition. The actual level of funding, if any, depends on final congressional action. However, we are inviting applications to allow enough time to complete the grant process if Congress appropriates funds for this program. Contingent upon the availability of funds and the quality of applications, we may make additional awards in FY 2018 from the list of unfunded applications from this competition. Maximum Awards: We will reject any application that proposes a budget exceeding $4,250,000 for a single budget period of 12 months. Estimated Number of Awards: 1. Note: The Department is not bound by any estimates in this notice. Project Period: Up to 60 months. 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. 3. Eligible Subgrantees: (a) Under 34 CFR 75.708(b) and (c) a grantee may award subgrants—to directly carry out project activities described in its application—to the following types of entities: 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 suitable to carry out the activities proposed in the application. (b) The grantee may award subgrants to entities it has identified in an approved application. 4. Other General Requirements: (a) Recipients of funding under this competition must make positive efforts to employ and advance in employment qualified individuals with disabilities (see section 606 of IDEA). (b) Each applicant for, and recipient of, funding under this competition 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). PO 00000 Frm 00041 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 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: 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 TDD or a 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 package from ED Pubs, be sure to identify this program or competition as follows: CFDA number 84.325A. 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 VII of this notice. 2. Content and Form of Application Submission: Requirements concerning the content and form 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. We recommend that you—(1) limit Part III to no more than 50 pages, and (2) use 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, reference citations, and captions, as well as all text in charts, tables, figures, graphs, and screen shots. • Use a font that is either 12 point or larger. • Use one of the following fonts: Times New Roman, Courier, Courier New, or Arial. The recommended 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 abstract (follow the guidance provided in the application package for completing the abstract), the table of contents, the list of priority E:\FR\FM\22MYN1.SGM 22MYN1 mstockstill on DSK30JT082PROD with NOTICES Federal Register / Vol. 82, No. 97 / Monday, May 22, 2017 / Notices requirements, the resumes, the reference list, the letters of support, or the appendices. However, the page limit does apply to all of Part III, the application narrative, including all text in charts, tables, figures, graphs, and screen shots. 3. Submission Dates and Times: Applications Available: May 22, 2017. Deadline for Transmittal of Applications: July 6, 2017. 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 Other Submission Requirements in section IV 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. 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: September 5, 2017. 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 competition. 5. Funding Restrictions: We reference regulations outlining funding restrictions in the Applicable Regulations section of this notice. 6. Data Universal Numbering System Number, Taxpayer Identification Number, 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 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 SAM registration with current information VerDate Sep<11>2014 23:17 May 19, 2017 Jkt 241001 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 at the following Web site: http://fedgov.dnb.com/ webform. A DUNS number can be created within one to two business days. 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 two to five weeks for your TIN to become active. The SAM registration process can take approximately seven business days, but may take upwards of several weeks, depending on the completeness and accuracy of the data you enter into the SAM database. Thus, if you think you might want to apply for Federal financial assistance under a program administered by the Department, please allow sufficient time to obtain and register your DUNS number and TIN. We strongly recommend that you register early. Note: Once your SAM registration is active, it may be 24 to 48 hours before you can access the information in, and submit an application through, Grants.gov. If you are currently registered with SAM, 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. Information about SAM is available at www.SAM.gov. To further assist you with obtaining and registering your DUNS number and TIN in SAM or updating your existing SAM account, we have prepared a SAM.gov Tip Sheet, which you can find at: www2.ed.gov/ fund/grant/apply/sam-faqs.html. 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/ web/grants/register.html. 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. PO 00000 Frm 00042 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 23211 Applications for grants under the National Center for Improving Teacher and Leader Performance to Better Serve Children with Disabilities competition, CFDA number 84.325A, 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 National Center for Improving Teacher and Leader Performance to Better Serve Children with Disabilities competition at www.Grants.gov. You must search for the downloadable application package for this competition by the CFDA number. Do not include the CFDA number’s alpha suffix in your search (e.g., search for 84.325, not 84.325A). 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. E:\FR\FM\22MYN1.SGM 22MYN1 mstockstill on DSK30JT082PROD with NOTICES 23212 Federal Register / Vol. 82, No. 97 / Monday, May 22, 2017 / Notices • 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. In addition, for specific guidance and procedures for submitting an application through Grants.gov, please refer to the Grants.gov Web site at: www.grants.gov/web/grants/applicants/ apply-for-grants.html. • 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—NonConstruction 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 read-only Portable Document Format (PDF). Do not upload an interactive or fillable PDF file. If you upload a file type other than a read-only PDF (e.g., Word, Excel, WordPerfect, etc.) or submit a passwordprotected file, we will not review that material. Please note that this could result in your application not being considered for funding because the material in question—for example, the application narrative—is critical to a meaningful review of your proposal. For that reason it is important to allow yourself adequate time to upload all material as PDF files. The Department will not convert material from other formats to PDF. Additional, detailed information on how to attach files is in the application instructions. • After you electronically submit your application, you will receive from Grants.gov an automatic notification of VerDate Sep<11>2014 23:17 May 19, 2017 Jkt 241001 receipt that contains a Grants.gov tracking number. This notification indicates receipt by Grants.gov only, not receipt by the Department. Grants.gov will also notify you automatically by email if your application met all the Grants.gov validation requirements or if there were any errors (such as submission of your application by someone other than a registered Authorized Organization Representative, or inclusion of an attachment with a file name that contains special characters). You will be given an opportunity to correct any errors and resubmit, but you must still meet the deadline for submission of applications. Once your application is successfully validated by Grants.gov, the Department will retrieve your application from Grants.gov and send you an email with a unique PR/Award number for your application. These emails do not mean that your application is without any disqualifying errors. While your application may have been successfully validated by Grants.gov, it must also meet the Department’s application requirements as specified in this notice and in the application instructions. Disqualifying errors could include, for instance, failure to upload attachments in a readonly PDF; failure to submit a required part of the application; or failure to meet applicant eligibility requirements. It is your responsibility to ensure that your submitted application has met all of the Department’s requirements. • 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 PO 00000 Frm 00043 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 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 the problem affected your ability to submit your application by 4:30:00 p.m., Washington, DC time, on the application deadline date. We will contact you after we determine whether your application will be accepted. FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT 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 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: Bonnie Jones, U.S. Department of Education, 400 Maryland Avenue SW., Room 5127, Potomac Center Plaza, Washington, DC 20202– 5108. FAX: (202) 245–7590. 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 E:\FR\FM\22MYN1.SGM 22MYN1 Federal Register / Vol. 82, No. 97 / Monday, May 22, 2017 / Notices 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 84.325A), 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. mstockstill on DSK30JT082PROD with NOTICES 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. We will not consider applications postmarked after the application deadline date. 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 84.325A), 550 12th Street, SW., Room 7039, 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 VerDate Sep<11>2014 23:17 May 19, 2017 Jkt 241001 (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 competition are listed in the application package. (a) Significance (5 points). (1) The Secretary considers the significance of the proposed project. (2) In determining the significance of the proposed project, the Secretary considers the following factors: (i) The extent to which the proposed project will address specific gaps or weaknesses in services, infrastructure, or opportunities that have been identified. (ii) The importance or magnitude of the results or outcomes likely to be attained by the proposed project. (b) Quality of the project services (40 points). (1) The Secretary considers the quality of the services to be provided by the proposed project. (2) In determining the quality of the services to be provided by the proposed project, the Secretary considers the quality and sufficiency of strategies for ensuring equal access and treatment for eligible project participants who are members of groups that have traditionally been underrepresented based on race, color, national origin, gender, age, or disability. (3) In addition, the Secretary considers the following factors: (i) The extent to which the goals, objectives, and outcomes to be achieved by the proposed project are clearly specified and measurable. (ii) The extent to which there is a conceptual framework underlying the proposed activities and the quality of that framework. (iii) The extent to which the services to be provided by the proposed project reflect up-to-date knowledge from research and effective practice. (iv) The extent to which the proposed products and services are of sufficient quality, intensity, and duration to lead to the outcomes to be achieved by the proposed project. (v) The extent to which the products and services to be developed and provided by the proposed project involve the use of efficient strategies, including the use of technology, collaboration with appropriate partners, and the leveraging of non-project resources. PO 00000 Frm 00044 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 23213 (c) Quality of the project evaluation (20 points). (1) The Secretary considers the quality of the evaluation to be conducted of the proposed project. (2) In determining the quality of the evaluation, the Secretary considers the following factors: (i) The extent to which the methods of evaluation are thorough, feasible, and appropriate to the goals, objectives, and outcomes of the proposed project. (ii) The extent to which the methods of evaluation will provide data and performance feedback for examining the effectiveness of project implementation strategies and the progress toward achieving intended outcomes. (iii) The extent to which the methods of evaluation will produce quantitative and qualitative data that demonstrate the project has met intended outcomes. (d) Adequacy of project resources (15 points). (1) The Secretary considers the adequacy of resources, including the personnel who will carry out the proposed project. (2) In determining the adequacy of resources, the Secretary considers 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) In addition, the Secretary considers the following factors: (i) The qualifications, including relevant training and experience, of key project personnel (i.e., project director, project staff, and project consultants or subcontractors). (ii) The adequacy of support, including facilities, equipment, supplies, and other resources, from the applicant organization and key partners. (iii) The extent to which the costs are reasonable in relation to the anticipated results and benefits. (e) Quality of management plan (20 points). (1) The Secretary considers the quality of the management plan for the proposed project. (2) In determining the quality of the management plan for the proposed project, the Secretary considers the following factors: (i) 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. (ii) The extent to which the time commitments of the project director, E:\FR\FM\22MYN1.SGM 22MYN1 mstockstill on DSK30JT082PROD with NOTICES 23214 Federal Register / Vol. 82, No. 97 / Monday, May 22, 2017 / Notices project staff, and project consultants or subcontractors are appropriate and adequate to meet the objectives of the proposed project. (iii) The adequacy of mechanisms for ensuring high-quality products and services from the proposed project. (iv) How the applicant will ensure that a diversity of perspectives are brought to bear in the operation of the proposed project, including those of parents, teachers, the business community, a variety of disciplinary and professional fields, recipients or beneficiaries of services, or others, as appropriate. 2. Review and Selection Process: (a) 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. (b) In addition, in making a competitive grant award, the Secretary 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. VerDate Sep<11>2014 23:17 May 19, 2017 Jkt 241001 4. Risk Assessment and Special Conditions: Consistent with 2 CFR 200.205, before awarding grants under this competition, the Department conducts a review of the risks posed by applicants. Under 2 CFR 3474.10, the Secretary may impose special conditions and, in appropriate circumstances, high-risk 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 2 CFR part 200, subpart D; has not fulfilled the conditions of a prior grant; or is otherwise not responsible. 5. Integrity and Performance System: If you are selected under this competition to receive an award that over the course of the project period may exceed the simplified acquisition threshold (currently $150,000), under 2 CFR 200.205(a)(2), we must make a judgment about your integrity, business ethics, and record of performance under Federal awards—that is, the risk posed by you as an applicant—before we make an award. In doing so, we must consider any information about you that is in the integrity and performance system (currently referred to as the Federal Awardee Performance and Integrity Information System (FAPIIS)), accessible through SAM. You may review and comment on any information about yourself that a Federal agency previously entered and that is currently in FAPIIS. Please note that, if the total value of your currently active grants, cooperative agreements, and procurement contracts from the Federal Government exceeds $10,000,000, the reporting requirements in 2 CFR part 200, Appendix XII, require you to report certain integrity information to FAPIIS semiannually. Please review the requirements in 2 CFR part 200, Appendix XII, if this grant plus all the other Federal funds you receive exceed $10,000,000. 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 PO 00000 Frm 00045 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 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 multiyear 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 are included in the application package and focus on the extent to which projects provide highquality products and services, the relevance of project products and services to educational policy and practice, and the use of products and services to improve educational policy and practice. Projects funded under this competition are required to submit data on these measures as directed by OSEP. Grantees will be required to report information on their project’s performance in annual and final performance reports to the Department (34 CFR 75.590). 5. Continuation Awards: In making a continuation award under 34 CFR 75.253, the Secretary considers, among other things: whether a grantee has made substantial progress in achieving the goals and objectives of the project; E:\FR\FM\22MYN1.SGM 22MYN1 Federal Register / Vol. 82, No. 97 / Monday, May 22, 2017 / Notices whether the grantee has expended funds in a manner that is consistent with its approved application and budget; and, if the Secretary has established performance measurement requirements, the performance targets in the grantee’s approved application. 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. Other Information mstockstill on DSK30JT082PROD with NOTICES 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 Management Support Services Team, U.S. Department of Education, 400 Maryland Avenue SW., room 5113, Potomac Center Plaza, Washington, DC 20202–2500. 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 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: May 17, 2017. Ruth E. Ryder, Deputy Director, Office of Special Education Programs, delegated the duties of the Assistant Secretary for Special Education and Rehabilitative Services. [FR Doc. 2017–10423 Filed 5–19–17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4000–01–P VerDate Sep<11>2014 23:17 May 19, 2017 Jkt 241001 DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION Applications for New Awards; Veterans Upward Bound Program Office of Postsecondary Education, Department of Education. ACTION: Notice. AGENCY: The Department is issuing a notice inviting applications for new awards for fiscal year (FY) 2017 for the Veterans Upward Bound Program, Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) number 84.047V. Dates: Applications Available: May 22, 2017. Deadline for Transmittal of Applications: June 21, 2017. Deadline for Intergovernmental Review: August 21, 2017. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Kenneth Foushee, U.S. Department of Education, 400 Maryland Avenue SW., room 5E113, Washington, DC 20202. Telephone: (202) 453–7417 or by email: Kenneth.Foushee@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. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: SUMMARY: Full Text of Announcement I. Funding Opportunity Description Purpose of Program: The Upward Bound (UB) Program is one of the seven programs known as the Federal TRIO Programs. The UB Program is a discretionary grant program that supports projects designed to provide students with the skills and motivation necessary to complete a program of secondary education and to enter into, and succeed in, a program of postsecondary education. There are three types of grants under the UB Program: UB; Veterans UB; and UB Math and Science (UBMS) grants. In this notice we invite applications for Veterans UB (VUB) grants only. The invitations to apply for UB and UBMS grants were published in an earlier issue of the Federal Register. The VUB Program supports projects designed to prepare, motivate, and assist military veterans in the development of academic and other skills necessary for acceptance into and success in a program of postsecondary education. VUB grantees are required to provide the services listed in section 402C(b) and (c) of the Higher Education Act of 1965, as amended (HEA) (20 U.S.C. 1070a-13), and in 34 CFR 645.15. Grantees may also provide the permissible services in section 402C(d) of the HEA. PO 00000 Frm 00046 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 23215 Background: The VUB Program is a critical component of the Department’s efforts to improve college readiness, college access, college selection, and degree completion for veterans. To more strategically align the VUB Program with broader reform strategies intended to improve postsecondary access and completion, and consistent with the Department’s increasing emphasis on promoting evidence-based practices through our grant competitions, the Secretary will also evaluate applications on the extent to which the components of the proposed project are supported by ‘‘strong theory’’—that is, a rationale for the proposed process, product, strategy, or practice that includes a logic model. We encourage applicants to read carefully the Selection Criteria section of this notice. Resources to assist applicants in creating a logic model can be found here: http://ies.ed.gov/ncee/ edlabs/regions/pacific/pdf/REL_ 2014007.pdf. Definitions: These definitions are from 34 CFR 77.1. Logic model (also referred to as theory of action) means a well-specified conceptual framework that identifies key components of the proposed process, product, strategy, or practice (i.e., the active ‘‘ingredients’’ that are hypothesized to be critical to achieving the relevant outcomes) and describes the relationships among the key components and outcomes, theoretically and operationally. Strong theory means a rationale for the proposed process, product, strategy, or practice that includes a logic model. Program Authority: 20 U.S.C. 1070a– 11 and 20 U.S.C. 1070a–13. Applicable Regulations: (a) The Education Department General Administrative Regulations (EDGAR) in 34 CFR parts 75 (except for 75.215 through 75.221), 77, 79, 82, 84, 86, 97, 98, and 99. (b) The Office of Management and Budget Guidelines to Agencies on Governmentwide Debarment and Suspension (Nonprocurement) in 2 CFR part 180, as adopted and amended as regulations of the Department in 2 CFR part 3485. (c) The Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards in 2 CFR part 200, as adopted and amended as regulations of the Department in 2 CFR part 3474. (d) The regulations for this program in 34 CFR part 645. Note: The regulations in 34 CFR part 79 apply to all applicants except federally recognized Indian Tribes. E:\FR\FM\22MYN1.SGM 22MYN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 82, Number 97 (Monday, May 22, 2017)]
[Notices]
[Pages 23207-23215]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2017-10423]


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DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION


Applications for New Awards; Personnel Development To Improve 
Services and Results for Children With Disabilities--National Center 
for Improving Teacher and Leader Performance To Better Serve Children 
With Disabilities

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

ACTION: Notice.

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SUMMARY: The Department of Education is issuing a notice inviting 
applications for new awards for fiscal year (FY) 2017 for Personnel 
Development to Improve Services and Results for Children with 
Disabilities--National Center for Improving Teacher and Leader 
Performance to Better Serve Children with Disabilities, Catalog of 
Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) number 84.325A.

DATES:  Applications Available: May 22, 2017.
    Deadline for Transmittal of Applications: July 6, 2017.
    Deadline for Intergovernmental Review: September 5, 2017.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Bonnie Jones, U.S. Department of 
Education, 400 Maryland Avenue SW., Room 5127, Potomac Center Plaza, 
Washington, DC 20202-5108. Telephone: (202) 245-7395.
    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.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Full Text of Announcement

I. Funding Opportunity Description

    Purpose of Program: The purposes of this program are to: (1) Help 
address State-identified needs for personnel preparation in special 
education, early intervention, related services, and regular education 
to work with children, including infants and toddlers, with 
disabilities; and (2) ensure that those personnel have the necessary 
skills and knowledge, derived from practices that have been determined 
through scientifically based research and experience, to be successful 
in serving those children.
    Priority: In accordance with 34 CFR 75.105(b)(2)(v), this priority 
is from allowable activities specified in the statute (see sections 662 
and 681 of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA)).
    Absolute Priority: For FY 2017 and any subsequent year in which we 
make awards from the list of unfunded applications 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:
    National Center for Improving Teacher and Leader Performance to 
Better Serve Children with Disabilities.
    Background:
    Meeting the diverse needs of students with disabilities in 
inclusive classrooms and other school settings requires a complex 
combination of knowledge and skills, including the use of practices 
supported by evidence. Organizations such as the Council of Chief State 
School Officers and the Council for Exceptional Children, therefore, 
have developed model standards of essential knowledge and skills that 
they believe teachers need in order to customize learning and be 
effective in improving student achievement, including the achievement 
of students with disabilities. In 2015, the National Policy Board for 
Educational Administration adopted a new set of professional standards 
for leaders, known as the Professional Standards for Education Leaders. 
These standards describe the knowledge and skills education leaders 
need to ensure every student is prepared for the 21st century. The 
curricula in teacher and leader preparation programs must be better 
aligned with State standards that reflect current knowledge and skills 
and the use of practices supported by evidence.
    Further, under the Higher Education Act of 1965, as amended (HEA), 
States must annually report on the quality of teacher preparation 
programs, identify low-performing programs, and provide them with 
technical assistance (TA). States will need high-quality TA for these 
activities.
    Finally, under the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 
(ESEA), as amended by the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), States 
must ensure that low-income and minority students are not served at 
disproportionate rates by ineffective, out-of-field, or inexperienced 
teachers. In addition, teacher and school leader incentive programs are 
authorized under Title II of the ESSA, and the Title II set-aside 
allows a variety of activities, including reforming teacher and leader 
certification, teacher evaluation, alternative certification, 
recruitment and retention, professional development (PD), and the TA 
provided to local educational agencies (LEAs). State educational 
agencies (SEAs) and institutions of higher education (IHEs) need high-
quality TA to carry out these reform efforts.
    This competition will fund a national center to assist SEAs, IHEs, 
and LEAs, in addressing all of these needs to help ensure that teachers 
and leaders have the necessary knowledge and skills to successfully 
meet the diverse needs of students with disabilities.
    Priority:
    The purpose of this priority is to fund a cooperative agreement to 
establish and operate a national center for improving teacher and 
leader performance to better serve children with disabilities to 
achieve, at a minimum, the following outcomes:
    (a) Improved capacity of States to review and strengthen 
certification or licensure standards and requirements, in collaboration 
with IHEs and LEAs that operate teacher and leader preparation 
programs, in order to ensure that these standards: (1) Are derived from 
frameworks and practices supported by evidence; and (2) reflect the 
knowledge and skills necessary for teachers and leaders to successfully 
serve students with disabilities in inclusive classrooms and school 
settings, including, at a minimum, competencies in evidence-based

[[Page 23208]]

interventions in reading, math, behavior, and school climate.
    (b) Improved capacity of States to adopt and implement rigorous 
program approval standards for teacher and leader preparation programs.
    (c) Increased capacity of IHEs to embed practices and frameworks 
supported by evidence and aligned to State licensure or certification 
requirements, into their preparation programs.
    (d) Increased capacity of SEAs and IHEs to use data from a variety 
of sources, including student data attributed to teachers and leaders 
who successfully exit preparation programs, to inform continuous 
improvement of those programs.
    (e) Increased capacity of SEAs to align and implement statewide 
plans (e.g., Educator Equity Plans and State Systemic Improvement 
Plans, State Quality Rating and Improvement Systems) to include 
certification or licensure reform and IHE teacher and leader program 
reform to improve outcomes for students with disabilities.
    In addition to these programmatic requirements, to be considered 
for funding under this priority, applicants must meet the application 
and administrative requirements in this priority, which are:
    (a) Demonstrate, in the narrative section of the application under 
``Significance of the Project,'' how the proposed project will--
    (1) Support States to reform certification or licensure standards 
and program approval standards, to include practices and frameworks 
supported by evidence, consisting of, at a minimum, competencies in 
evidence-based interventions in reading, math, behavior, and school 
climate; and identify effective strategies for achieving institutional 
change and reform in IHEs and LEAs that prepare teachers and leaders. 
To meet these requirements the applicant must--
    (i) Present applicable national and State data demonstrating the 
current needs of States to reform teacher and leader certification or 
licensure standards and program approval standards to include practices 
and frameworks supported by evidence to ensure teachers and leaders are 
fully prepared to serve students with disabilities in inclusive 
classrooms and school settings;
    (ii) Demonstrate knowledge of current certification and licensure 
issues, including portability and reciprocity, multi-tiered licensure 
systems, and credentialing structures; and
    (iii) Demonstrate knowledge of the current need for preparation of 
teachers and leaders to address the complex roles they share in 
providing instruction in schoolwide frameworks such as Multi-Tiered 
Systems of Support (MTSS);
    (2) Demonstrate knowledge of, and previous experience with, using 
effective approaches to disseminate knowledge, tools, and resources to 
SEAs, LEAs, and technical assistance (TA) providers; and
    (3) Demonstrate knowledge of, and previous experience with, 
implementing TA strategies that are intensive and specialized.
    (b) Demonstrate, in the narrative section of the application under 
``Quality of the Project Services,'' how the proposed project will--
    (1) Ensure equal access and treatment for members of groups that 
have traditionally been underrepresented based on race, color, national 
origin, gender, age, or disability. To meet this requirement, the 
applicant must describe how it will--
    (i) Identify the needs of the intended recipients for TA and 
information; and
    (ii) Ensure that services and products meet the needs of the 
intended recipients of the grant;
    (2) Achieve its goals, objectives, and OSEP-specified outcomes. To 
meet this requirement, the applicant must provide--
    (i) Measurable intended project outcomes; and
    (ii) The logic model by which the proposed project will achieve its 
intended outcomes. A logic model used in connection with this priority 
communicates how a project will achieve its intended outcomes and 
provides a framework for both the formative and summative evaluations 
of the project;
    (3) Use a conceptual framework to develop project plans and 
activities, describing any underlying concepts, assumptions, 
expectations, beliefs, or theories, as well as the presumed 
relationships or linkages among these variables, and any empirical 
support for this framework;

    Note: Rather than use the definition of ``logic model'' in 34 
CFR 77.1(c), OSEP uses the definition in paragraph (b)(2)(ii) of 
these application requirements. This definition, unlike the 
definition in 34 CFR 77.1(c), differentiates between logic models 
and conceptual frameworks. The following Web sites provide more 
information on logic models: www.osepideasthatwork.org/logicModel 
and www.osepideasthatwork.org/resources-grantees/program-areas/ta-ta/tad-project-logic-model-and-conceptual-framework.

    (4) Be based on current research and make use of practices 
supported by evidence. To meet this requirement, the applicant must 
describe--
    (i) The current research on systems change and capacity building 
within SEAs and IHEs that will inform the TA provided to SEAs and IHEs 
that undertake alignment and reform efforts;
    (ii) The current research about adult learning principles and 
implementation science that will inform the proposed TA; and
    (iii) How the proposed project will incorporate current research 
and practices, strategies, and frameworks supported by evidence into 
the development and delivery of its products and services;
    (5) Develop products and provide services that are of high quality 
and sufficient intensity and duration to achieve the intended outcomes 
of the proposed project. To address this requirement, the applicant 
must describe--
    (i) Its proposed approach to universal, general TA,\1\ which must 
identify the intended recipients of the products and services under 
this approach, and include a plan for ensuring SEAs and IHEs can easily 
access and use products and services developed by the proposed project;
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \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.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    (ii) Its proposed approach to targeted, specialized TA,\2\ which 
must identify--
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \2\ ``Targeted, specialized TA'' means TA services 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.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    (A) The intended recipients of the products and services under this 
approach;
    (B) Its proposed approach to measure the readiness of potential 
targeted TA recipients to work with the project, assessing, at a 
minimum, their current infrastructure, available resources, and ability 
to build capacity for ongoing reform and continuous improvement at the 
SEA and IHE levels;
    (C) The process by which the project will select, and provide 
targeted TA to, SEAs and IHEs. This targeted TA must support SEA 
capacity to initiate, scale

[[Page 23209]]

up, and sustain alignment and reform efforts; and
    (D) The process the proposed project will use to collaborate with 
other relevant TA centers and national organizations, as appropriate, 
to develop and implement targeted TA strategies in order to reduce 
duplication of effort and maximize efficiency;
    (iv) Its proposed approach to intensive, sustained TA,\3\ which 
must identify--
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \3\ ``Intensive, sustained TA'' means TA services often provided 
on-site 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.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    (A) The intended recipients of the products and services under this 
approach;
    (B) Its proposed approach to measure the readiness of the SEAs and 
IHE teacher and leader preparation programs to work with the project, 
including their commitment to the initiative, alignment of the 
initiative to their needs, current infrastructure, available resources, 
and ability to build capacity at SEA and IHE levels; and
    (C) The process by which the project will select, and provide 
ongoing intensive TA to, SEAs and IHEs that are positioned to engage in 
systemic reform efforts. This intensive TA must support SEA capacity to 
scale up and sustain ongoing alignment and reform of certification or 
licensure standards and initial program approval and reauthorization 
standards. Intensive TA must also support IHE capacity to scale up and 
sustain preparation program reform efforts to better serve students 
with disabilities, using data to inform ongoing improvement efforts;
    (6) Develop products and implement services that maximize 
efficiency. To address this requirement, the applicant must describe--
    (i) How the proposed project will use technology to achieve the 
intended project outcomes;
    (ii) With whom the proposed project will collaborate and the 
intended outcomes of this collaboration (including working from a 
single TA plan when appropriate). The description should include how 
the proposed project will provide PD to other TA centers on available 
tools and resources to leverage and extend the reach of its TA; and
    (iii) How the proposed project will use non-project resources to 
achieve the intended project outcomes.
    (c) In the narrative section of the application under ``Quality of 
the Evaluation Plan,'' include an evaluation plan for the project. The 
evaluation plan must describe: Measures of progress in implementation, 
including the criteria for determining the extent to which the 
project's products and services have reached its target population; 
measures of intended outcomes or results of the project's activities in 
order to evaluate those activities; and how well the goals or 
objectives of the proposed project, as described in its logic model, 
have been met.
    (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, 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.
    (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 applicable; and
    (ii) Timelines and milestones for accomplishing the project tasks;
    (2) Key project personnel and any consultants and subcontractors 
will be allocated and how these allocations are appropriate and 
adequate to achieve the project's intended outcomes;
    (3) The proposed management plan will ensure that the products and 
services provided are of high quality, relevant, and useful to 
recipients; and
    (4) The proposed project will benefit from a diversity of 
perspectives, including those of families, educators, TA providers, 
researchers, and policy makers, among others, in its development and 
operation.
    (f) Address the following application requirements. The applicant 
must--
    (1) Include, in Appendix A, a logic model that depicts, at a 
minimum, the goals, activities, outputs, and intended outcomes of the 
proposed project;
    (2) Include, in Appendix A, a conceptual framework for the project;
    (3) Include, in Appendix A, personnel-loading charts and timelines, 
as applicable, 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 in Washington, DC, 
after receipt of the award, and an annual planning meeting 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) Four annual two-day trips to attend Department briefings, 
Department-sponsored conferences, and other meetings, as requested by 
OSEP; and
    (iv) A one-day intensive 3+2 review meeting in Washington, DC, 
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 and approved by the OSEP 
project officer. 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;
    (6) Maintain a Web site that meets government or industry-
recognized standards for accessibility; and
    (7) Include, in Appendix A, an assurance to assist OSEP with the 
transfer of pertinent resources and products and to maintain the 
continuity of services to States during the transition to this new 
award period, as appropriate.
    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--

[[Page 23210]]

    (a) The recommendation of a 3+2 review team consisting of experts 
selected by the Secretary. This review will be conducted during a one-
day intensive meeting that will be held during the last half of the 
second year of the project period.
    (b) The success and timeliness with which the requirements of the 
negotiated cooperative agreement have been or are being met by the 
project.
    (c) The quality, relevance, and usefulness of the project's 
products and services and the extent to which the project's products 
and services are aligned with the project's objectives and likely to 
result in the project achieving its intended outcomes.
    Definitions:
    For the purposes of this priority:
    Strong theory means a rationale for the proposed process, product, 
strategy, or practice that includes a logic model.
    Supported by evidence means supported by at least strong theory.
    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. 1462 and 1481.
    Applicable Regulations: (a) The Education Department General 
Administrative Regulations in 34 CFR parts 75, 77, 79, 81, 82, 84, 86, 
97, 98, and 99. (b) The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) 
Guidelines to Agencies on Governmentwide Debarment and Suspension 
(Nonprocurement) in 2 CFR part 180, as adopted and amended as 
regulations of the Department in 2 CFR part 3485. (c) The Uniform 
Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements 
for Federal Awards in 2 CFR part 200, as adopted and amended as 
regulations of the Department in 2 CFR part 3474. (d) The regulations 
for this program in 34 CFR part 304.

    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 IHEs only.

II. Award Information

    Type of Award: Cooperative agreement.
    Estimated Available Funds: The Administration has requested 
$83,700,000 for the Personnel Development to Improve Services and 
Results for Children with Disabilities program for FY 2017, of which we 
intend to use an estimated $4,250,000 for this competition. The actual 
level of funding, if any, depends on final congressional action. 
However, we are inviting applications to allow enough time to complete 
the grant process if Congress appropriates funds for this program.
    Contingent upon the availability of funds and the quality of 
applications, we may make additional awards in FY 2018 from the list of 
unfunded applications from this competition.
    Maximum Awards: We will reject any application that proposes a 
budget exceeding $4,250,000 for a single budget period of 12 months.
    Estimated Number of Awards: 1.

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

    Project Period: Up to 60 months.

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.
    3. Eligible Subgrantees: (a) Under 34 CFR 75.708(b) and (c) a 
grantee may award subgrants--to directly carry out project activities 
described in its application--to the following types of entities: 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 suitable 
to carry out the activities proposed in the application.
    (b) The grantee may award subgrants to entities it has identified 
in an approved application.
    4. Other General Requirements:
    (a) Recipients of funding under this competition must make positive 
efforts to employ and advance in employment qualified individuals with 
disabilities (see section 606 of IDEA).
    (b) Each applicant for, and recipient of, funding under this 
competition 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: 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 TDD or a 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 package from ED Pubs, be sure to 
identify this program or competition as follows: CFDA number 84.325A.
    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 VII of this notice.
    2. Content and Form of Application Submission: Requirements 
concerning the content and form 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. We recommend that you--(1) 
limit Part III to no more than 50 pages, and (2) use 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, reference citations, and captions, as well as 
all text in charts, tables, figures, graphs, and screen shots.
     Use a font that is either 12 point or larger.
     Use one of the following fonts: Times New Roman, Courier, 
Courier New, or Arial.
    The recommended 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 
abstract (follow the guidance provided in the application package for 
completing the abstract), the table of contents, the list of priority

[[Page 23211]]

requirements, the resumes, the reference list, the letters of support, 
or the appendices. However, the page limit does apply to all of Part 
III, the application narrative, including all text in charts, tables, 
figures, graphs, and screen shots.
    3. Submission Dates and Times:
    Applications Available: May 22, 2017.
    Deadline for Transmittal of Applications: July 6, 2017.
    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 Other Submission Requirements in section 
IV 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. 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: September 5, 2017.
    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 
competition.
    5. Funding Restrictions: We reference regulations outlining funding 
restrictions in the Applicable Regulations section of this notice.
    6. Data Universal Numbering System Number, Taxpayer Identification 
Number, 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 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 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 at the 
following Web site: http://fedgov.dnb.com/webform. A DUNS number can be 
created within one to two business days.
    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 two to five weeks for your TIN to become active.
    The SAM registration process can take approximately seven business 
days, but may take upwards of several weeks, depending on the 
completeness and accuracy of the data you enter into the SAM database. 
Thus, if you think you might want to apply for Federal financial 
assistance under a program administered by the Department, please allow 
sufficient time to obtain and register your DUNS number and TIN. We 
strongly recommend that you register early.

    Note:  Once your SAM registration is active, it may be 24 to 48 
hours before you can access the information in, and submit an 
application through, Grants.gov.

    If you are currently registered with SAM, 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.
    Information about SAM is available at www.SAM.gov. To further 
assist you with obtaining and registering your DUNS number and TIN in 
SAM or updating your existing SAM account, we have prepared a SAM.gov 
Tip Sheet, which you can find at: www2.ed.gov/fund/grant/apply/sam-faqs.html.
    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/web/grants/register.html.
    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 National Center for Improving 
Teacher and Leader Performance to Better Serve Children with 
Disabilities competition, CFDA number 84.325A, 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 National 
Center for Improving Teacher and Leader Performance to Better Serve 
Children with Disabilities competition at www.Grants.gov. You must 
search for the downloadable application package for this competition by 
the CFDA number. Do not include the CFDA number's alpha suffix in your 
search (e.g., search for 84.325, not 84.325A).
    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 23212]]

     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. In addition, for specific guidance and 
procedures for submitting an application through Grants.gov, please 
refer to the Grants.gov Web site at: www.grants.gov/web/grants/applicants/apply-for-grants.html.
     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 read-only Portable 
Document Format (PDF). Do not upload an interactive or fillable PDF 
file. If you upload a file type other than a read-only PDF (e.g., Word, 
Excel, WordPerfect, etc.) or submit a password-protected file, we will 
not review that material. Please note that this could result in your 
application not being considered for funding because the material in 
question--for example, the application narrative--is critical to a 
meaningful review of your proposal. For that reason it is important to 
allow yourself adequate time to upload all material as PDF files. The 
Department will not convert material from other formats to PDF. 
Additional, detailed information on how to attach files is in the 
application instructions.
     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. Grants.gov 
will also notify you automatically by email if your application met all 
the Grants.gov validation requirements or if there were any errors 
(such as submission of your application by someone other than a 
registered Authorized Organization Representative, or inclusion of an 
attachment with a file name that contains special characters). You will 
be given an opportunity to correct any errors and resubmit, but you 
must still meet the deadline for submission of applications.
    Once your application is successfully validated by Grants.gov, the 
Department will retrieve your application from Grants.gov and send you 
an email with a unique PR/Award number for your application.
    These emails do not mean that your application is without any 
disqualifying errors. While your application may have been successfully 
validated by Grants.gov, it must also meet the Department's application 
requirements as specified in this notice and in the application 
instructions. Disqualifying errors could include, for instance, failure 
to upload attachments in a read-only PDF; failure to submit a required 
part of the application; or failure to meet applicant eligibility 
requirements. It is your responsibility to ensure that your submitted 
application has met all of the Department's requirements.
     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 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 the problem affected your ability to 
submit your application by 4:30:00 p.m., Washington, DC time, on the 
application deadline date. We will contact you after we determine 
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 
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: Bonnie Jones, U.S. 
Department of Education, 400 Maryland Avenue SW., Room 5127, Potomac 
Center Plaza, Washington, DC 20202-5108. FAX: (202) 245-7590.
    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

[[Page 23213]]

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 
84.325A), 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.

    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.

    We will not consider applications postmarked after the application 
deadline date.
    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 84.325A), 550 12th Street, SW., Room 7039, 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 competition 
are listed in the application package.
    (a) Significance (5 points).
    (1) The Secretary considers the significance of the proposed 
project.
    (2) In determining the significance of the proposed project, the 
Secretary considers the following factors:
    (i) The extent to which the proposed project will address specific 
gaps or weaknesses in services, infrastructure, or opportunities that 
have been identified.
    (ii) The importance or magnitude of the results or outcomes likely 
to be attained by the proposed project.
    (b) Quality of the project services (40 points).
    (1) The Secretary considers the quality of the services to be 
provided by the proposed project.
    (2) In determining the quality of the services to be provided by 
the proposed project, the Secretary considers the quality and 
sufficiency of strategies for ensuring equal access and treatment for 
eligible project participants who are members of groups that have 
traditionally been underrepresented based on race, color, national 
origin, gender, age, or disability.
    (3) In addition, the Secretary considers the following factors:
    (i) The extent to which the goals, objectives, and outcomes to be 
achieved by the proposed project are clearly specified and measurable.
    (ii) The extent to which there is a conceptual framework underlying 
the proposed activities and the quality of that framework.
    (iii) The extent to which the services to be provided by the 
proposed project reflect up-to-date knowledge from research and 
effective practice.
    (iv) The extent to which the proposed products and services are of 
sufficient quality, intensity, and duration to lead to the outcomes to 
be achieved by the proposed project.
    (v) The extent to which the products and services to be developed 
and provided by the proposed project involve the use of efficient 
strategies, including the use of technology, collaboration with 
appropriate partners, and the leveraging of non-project resources.
    (c) Quality of the project evaluation (20 points).
    (1) The Secretary considers the quality of the evaluation to be 
conducted of the proposed project.
    (2) In determining the quality of the evaluation, the Secretary 
considers the following factors:
    (i) The extent to which the methods of evaluation are thorough, 
feasible, and appropriate to the goals, objectives, and outcomes of the 
proposed project.
    (ii) The extent to which the methods of evaluation will provide 
data and performance feedback for examining the effectiveness of 
project implementation strategies and the progress toward achieving 
intended outcomes.
    (iii) The extent to which the methods of evaluation will produce 
quantitative and qualitative data that demonstrate the project has met 
intended outcomes.
    (d) Adequacy of project resources (15 points).
    (1) The Secretary considers the adequacy of resources, including 
the personnel who will carry out the proposed project.
    (2) In determining the adequacy of resources, the Secretary 
considers 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) In addition, the Secretary considers the following factors:
    (i) The qualifications, including relevant training and experience, 
of key project personnel (i.e., project director, project staff, and 
project consultants or subcontractors).
    (ii) The adequacy of support, including facilities, equipment, 
supplies, and other resources, from the applicant organization and key 
partners.
    (iii) The extent to which the costs are reasonable in relation to 
the anticipated results and benefits.
    (e) Quality of management plan (20 points).
    (1) The Secretary considers the quality of the management plan for 
the proposed project.
    (2) In determining the quality of the management plan for the 
proposed project, the Secretary considers the following factors:
    (i) 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.
    (ii) The extent to which the time commitments of the project 
director,

[[Page 23214]]

project staff, and project consultants or subcontractors are 
appropriate and adequate to meet the objectives of the proposed 
project.
    (iii) The adequacy of mechanisms for ensuring high-quality products 
and services from the proposed project.
    (iv) How the applicant will ensure that a diversity of perspectives 
are brought to bear in the operation of the proposed project, including 
those of parents, teachers, the business community, a variety of 
disciplinary and professional fields, recipients or beneficiaries of 
services, or others, as appropriate.
    2. Review and Selection Process: (a) 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.
    (b) In addition, in making a competitive grant award, the Secretary 
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.
    4. Risk Assessment and Special Conditions: Consistent with 2 CFR 
200.205, before awarding grants under this competition, the Department 
conducts a review of the risks posed by applicants. Under 2 CFR 
3474.10, the Secretary may impose special conditions and, in 
appropriate circumstances, high-risk 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 2 CFR part 200, subpart D; has not 
fulfilled the conditions of a prior grant; or is otherwise not 
responsible.
    5. Integrity and Performance System: If you are selected under this 
competition to receive an award that over the course of the project 
period may exceed the simplified acquisition threshold (currently 
$150,000), under 2 CFR 200.205(a)(2), we must make a judgment about 
your integrity, business ethics, and record of performance under 
Federal awards--that is, the risk posed by you as an applicant--before 
we make an award. In doing so, we must consider any information about 
you that is in the integrity and performance system (currently referred 
to as the Federal Awardee Performance and Integrity Information System 
(FAPIIS)), accessible through SAM. You may review and comment on any 
information about yourself that a Federal agency previously entered and 
that is currently in FAPIIS.
    Please note that, if the total value of your currently active 
grants, cooperative agreements, and procurement contracts from the 
Federal Government exceeds $10,000,000, the reporting requirements in 2 
CFR part 200, Appendix XII, require you to report certain integrity 
information to FAPIIS semiannually. Please review the requirements in 2 
CFR part 200, Appendix XII, if this grant plus all the other Federal 
funds you receive exceed $10,000,000.

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 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 multiyear 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 are included in the application package and focus on the 
extent to which projects provide high-quality products and services, 
the relevance of project products and services to educational policy 
and practice, and the use of products and services to improve 
educational policy and practice.
    Projects funded under this competition are required to submit data 
on these measures as directed by OSEP.
    Grantees will be required to report information on their project's 
performance in annual and final performance reports to the Department 
(34 CFR 75.590).
    5. Continuation Awards: In making a continuation award under 34 CFR 
75.253, the Secretary considers, among other things: whether a grantee 
has made substantial progress in achieving the goals and objectives of 
the project;

[[Page 23215]]

whether the grantee has expended funds in a manner that is consistent 
with its approved application and budget; and, if the Secretary has 
established performance measurement requirements, the performance 
targets in the grantee's approved application.
    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. 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 Management Support Services Team, U.S. Department of Education, 400 
Maryland Avenue SW., room 5113, Potomac Center Plaza, Washington, DC 
20202-2500. 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 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: May 17, 2017.
Ruth E. Ryder,
Deputy Director, Office of Special Education Programs, delegated the 
duties of the Assistant Secretary for Special Education and 
Rehabilitative Services.
[FR Doc. 2017-10423 Filed 5-19-17; 8:45 am]
 BILLING CODE 4000-01-P