Applications for New Awards; National Comprehensive Center on Improving Literacy for Students With Disabilities, 36722-36730 [2021-14864]

Download as PDF 36722 Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 131 / Tuesday, July 13, 2021 / Notices Code of Federal Regulations at www.govinfo.gov. 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 Portable Document Format (PDF). To use PDF you must have Adobe Acrobat Reader, which is available free at the site. You may also access documents of the Department published in the Federal Register by using the article search feature at www.federalregister.gov. Specifically, through the advanced search feature at this site, you can limit your search to documents published by the Department. Ian Rosenblum, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Policy and Programs Delegated the Authority to Perform the Functions and Duties of the Assistant Secretary, Office of Elementary and Secondary Education. [FR Doc. 2021–14858 Filed 7–12–21; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4000–01–P DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION Applications for New Awards; National Comprehensive Center on Improving Literacy for Students With Disabilities Offices of Elementary and Secondary Education and Special Education and Rehabilitative Services, Department of Education. ACTION: Notice. AGENCY: The Department of Education (Department) is issuing a notice inviting applications for a new award for fiscal year (FY) 2021 for a National Comprehensive Center on Improving Literacy for Students with Disabilities (Comprehensive Centers program), Assistance Listing Number 84.283D. This notice relates to the approved information collection under OMB control number 1894–0006. DATES: Applications available: July 13, 2021. Deadline for transmittal of applications: September 1, 2021. Pre-Application Webinar Information: No later than July 19, 2021, the Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP) will post a pre-recorded informational webinar designed to provide technical assistance (TA) to interested applicants. ADDRESSES: For the addresses for obtaining and submitting an application, please refer to our Common Instructions for Applicants to Department of Education Discretionary Grant Programs, published in the Federal Register on February 13, 2019 (84 FR 3768), and available at jbell on DSKJLSW7X2PROD with NOTICES SUMMARY: VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:47 Jul 12, 2021 Jkt 253001 www.govinfo.gov/content/pkg/FR–2019– 02–13/pdf/2019–02206.pdf. The webinar may be found at www2.ed.gov/fund/grant/apply/osep/ new-osep-grants.html. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Tina Diamond, U.S. Department of Education, 400 Maryland Avenue SW, Room 5142, Potomac Center Plaza, Washington, DC 20202–5076. Telephone: (202) 245–6723. Email: Christina.Diamond@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: Full Text of Announcement I. Funding Opportunity Description Purpose of Program: The purpose of the National Comprehensive Center on Improving Literacy for Students with Disabilities (Center) is to identify or develop evidence-based literacy assessment tools and professional development activities and identify evidence-based instruction, strategies, and accommodations for students at risk of not attaining full literacy skills due to a disability, including dyslexia impacting reading or writing, or developmental delay impacting reading, writing, language processing, comprehension, or executive functioning. The Center will also disseminate its products and information on evidence-based literacy to families, SEAs, LEAs, REAs, and schools. Priority: This priority is from the notice of final priority, requirement, and definitions (NFP) for this program published elsewhere in this issue of the Federal Register. Absolute Priority: For FY 2021 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 Comprehensive Center on Improving Literacy for Students with Disabilities. Background: Section 2244 of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, as amended (ESEA) requires the Secretary to establish a comprehensive center on students at risk of not attaining full literacy skills due to a disability. Comprehensive centers are typically administered by the Office of Elementary and Secondary Education (OESE). OESE is funding this Center; PO 00000 Frm 00025 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 however, because of the Center’s subject matter, it will be administered jointly by OESE and OSEP in the Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services (OSERS). The project is designed to improve implementation of evidence-based literacy practices in both teacher classroom and remote learning environments. With respect to remote learning, the priority is intended to ensure that teachers have the training and support they need to implement evidence-based literacy practices during remote instruction for students with disabilities, including students with dyslexia impacting reading or writing, or developmental delay impacting reading, writing, language processing, comprehension, or executive functioning. Remote learning plays a critical role in regular instruction and can serve as a crucial link allowing high-quality teaching and learning to continue when regular instruction is disrupted. Priority: The purpose of this priority is to fund a cooperative agreement to establish and operate a National Comprehensive Center on Improving Literacy for Students with Disabilities (Center) for children in early childhood education programs through high school. The Center must— (a) Identify or develop free or low-cost evidence-based assessment tools for identifying students at risk of not attaining full literacy skills due to a disability, including dyslexia impacting reading or writing, or developmental delay impacting reading, writing, language processing, comprehension, or executive functioning; (b) Identify evidence-based literacy instruction, strategies, and accommodations, including assistive technology, designed to meet the specific needs of such students; (c) Provide families of such students with information to assist such students; (d) Identify or develop evidence-based professional development for teachers, paraprofessionals, principals, other school leaders, and specialized instructional support personnel to— (1) Understand early indicators of students at risk of not attaining full literacy skills due to a disability, including dyslexia impacting reading or writing, or developmental delay impacting reading, writing, language processing, comprehension, or executive functioning; (2) Use evidence-based screening assessments for early identification of E:\FR\FM\13JYN1.SGM 13JYN1 jbell on DSKJLSW7X2PROD with NOTICES Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 131 / Tuesday, July 13, 2021 / Notices such students beginning not later than kindergarten; 1 and (3) Implement evidence-based instruction designed to meet the specific needs of such students; and (e) Disseminate the products of the comprehensive center to regionally diverse SEAs, REAs, LEAs, and schools, including, as appropriate, through partnerships with other comprehensive centers established under section 203 of the Educational Technical Assistance Act of 2002 (20 U.S.C. 9602), and regional educational laboratories established under section 174 of the Education Sciences Reform Act of 2002 (20 U.S.C. 9564). 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,’’ how the proposed project will— (1) Address current and emerging training and information needs of SEAs, REAs, LEAs, TA centers, schools, and practitioners to select and implement teacher classroom and remote learning environment evidence-based practices (EBPs) that will improve literacy outcomes for students with disabilities, including students with dyslexia impacting reading or writing, or developmental delay impacting reading, writing, language processing, comprehension, or executive functioning. To meet this requirement, the applicant must— (i) Demonstrate knowledge of current and emerging EBPs, which can be used in reading and literacy-related teacher classroom and remote learning environment instruction, screening, assessment, and identification or diagnosis of students at risk for not attaining full literacy skills due to a disability, including dyslexia impacting reading or writing, or developmental delay impacting reading, writing, language processing, comprehension, or executive functioning. This includes demonstrating knowledge of current and emerging reading and literacy-related EBPs for students who are English learners; students from a variety of settings (e.g., rural, suburban, urban); students from low-income families; and other educationally disadvantaged students; or 1 Applicants are encouraged to identify or develop professional development for using evidence-based screening assessments for early identification of children in early childhood or prekindergarten programs, as well. VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:47 Jul 12, 2021 Jkt 253001 (ii) Demonstrate knowledge of, previous experience with, and results of using creative approaches and implementing in-person and virtual TA strategies to provide capacity-building services and disseminate teacher classroom and remote learning environment EBPs to a variety of entities, including parents, SEAs, REAs, LEAs, schools, Head Start, and other early childhood programs; (2) Demonstrate a record of improving outcomes in literacy achievement for students at risk for not attaining full literacy skills due to a disability, including dyslexia impacting reading or writing, or developmental delay impacting reading, writing, language processing, comprehension, or executive functioning, in order to better prepare them to compete in a global economy; and (3) Demonstrate a record of improving the adoption, implementation, and sustainment of teacher classroom and remote learning environment EBPs in literacy instruction for students at risk for not attaining full literacy skills due to a disability, including dyslexia impacting reading or writing, or developmental delay impacting reading, writing, language processing, comprehension, or executive functioning. (b) Demonstrate, in the narrative section of the application under ‘‘Quality of 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, sex, 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 products and services meet the needs of the intended recipients of the grant; (2) Achieve its goals, objectives, and intended short-term, intermediate, and long-term outcomes. To meet this requirement, the applicant must provide— (i) A five-year plan for the Center to identify current and emerging training and information needs and to address the priority; (ii) Measurable intended project outcomes; and (iii) In Appendix A, the logic model (as defined in 34 CFR 77.1) by which the proposed project will achieve its intended outcomes that depicts, at a minimum, the goals, activities, outputs, and intended short-term, intermediate, and long-term outcomes of the proposed project; PO 00000 Frm 00026 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 36723 (3) Use a conceptual framework (and provide a copy in Appendix A) to develop project plans and activities, and describe any underlying concepts, assumptions, expectations, or theories, as well as the presumed relationships or linkages among these variables, and any empirical support for this framework; Note: The following websites provide more information on logic models and conceptual frameworks: www.osepideasthatwork.org/logicModel, www.osepideasthatwork.org/resourcesgrantees/program-areas/ta-ta/tadproject-logic-model-and-conceptualframework, and www.federalregister.gov/d/2019-06583. (4) Be based on current research and make use of EBPs in the development and delivery of its products and services. To meet this requirement, the applicant must describe— (i) The current research on teacher classroom and remote learning environment EBPs for literacy instruction for students at risk for not attaining full literacy skills due to a disability, including dyslexia impacting reading or writing, or developmental delay impacting reading, writing, language processing, comprehension, or executive functioning; (ii) The current research on teacher classroom and remote learning environment EBPs for assessing students at risk for not attaining full literacy skills due to a disability, including dyslexia impacting reading or writing, or developmental delay impacting reading, writing, language processing, comprehension, or executive functioning. This should include the current research on screening assessments for dyslexia and other literacy-related disabilities that are evidence-based, psychometrically valid, free or low-cost, efficient to scale, and readily available for use; and (iii) The current research about adult learning principles in in-person and virtual settings and implementation science that will inform the proposed TA; and (5) Develop products or refine or update publicly available existing products and provide in-person and virtual services that are of high quality and sufficient intensity and duration to achieve the intended measurable outcomes of the proposed project. To address this requirement, the applicant must describe— (i) How it proposes to identify or develop the knowledge base in teacher classroom and remote learning environment literacy instruction for students at risk of not attaining full literacy skills due to a disability; E:\FR\FM\13JYN1.SGM 13JYN1 jbell on DSKJLSW7X2PROD with NOTICES 36724 Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 131 / Tuesday, July 13, 2021 / Notices (ii) Its proposed approach to universal, general TA, which must identify the intended recipients, including the type and number of recipients, that will receive the products and services under this approach; (iii) Its proposed approach to targeted, specialized TA, which must identify— (A) The intended recipients, including the type and number of recipients, that will receive the products and services under this approach, a description of new or existing publicly available products that may be used and services that the Center proposes to make available, and the expected impact of those products and services under this approach; and (B) Its proposed approach to measure the readiness of potential TA recipients to work with the project, assessing, at a minimum, their current infrastructure, available resources, and ability to build capacity at the local level; and (iv) Its proposed approach to intensive, sustained TA, which must identify— (A) The intended recipients, including the type and number of recipients, that will receive the products and services, a description of new or existing publicly available products that may be used and services that the Center proposes to make available, and the expected impact of those products and services under this approach; (B) Its proposed approach to measure the readiness of the target audiences 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 the SEA, REA, LEA, school, and early childhood education program levels; (C) Its proposed plan for assisting SEAs, REAs, and LEAs to build or enhance in-person and virtual training systems that include capacity-building services and professional development based on adult learning principles and coaching; and (D) Its proposed plan for working with appropriate levels of the education system (e.g., SEAs, regional TA providers, districts, schools, early childhood education programs, families) to ensure that there is communication between each level and that there are systems in place to support the use of teacher classroom and remote learning environment EBPs for literacy instruction; (6) Partner with the National Comprehensive Center and at least one of the other federally funded comprehensive centers, regional educational laboratories, equity assistance centers, OSEP- and other VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:47 Jul 12, 2021 Jkt 253001 related federally funded TA Centers, parent training and information and community parent resource centers funded by the Department and OSEP (e.g., Center for Parent Information and Resources and Parent Technical Assistance Centers), and other related organizations to refine or 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; and (iii) How the proposed project will use non-project resources to achieve the intended project outcomes; and (7) Develop a dissemination plan that describes how the applicant will systematically distribute information, products, and services to varied intended audiences, using a variety of in-person and virtual dissemination strategies, to promote awareness and use of the Center’s products and services. (c) In the narrative section of the application under ‘‘Quality of the project evaluation,’’ include an evaluation plan for the project developed in consultation with and implemented by a third-party evaluator. The evaluation plan must— (1) Articulate formative and summative evaluation questions, including important process and outcome evaluation questions, that are linked directly to the project’s proposed logic model required in paragraph (b)(2)(iii) of this notice; (2) Describe how progress in and fidelity of implementation, as well as project short-term, intermediate, and long-term outcomes, will be measured to answer the evaluation questions. Specify the measures and associated instruments or sources for data appropriate to the evaluation questions. Include information regarding reliability and validity of measures where appropriate; (3) Describe strategies for analyzing data and how data collected as part of this plan will be used to inform and improve service delivery over the course of the project and to refine the proposed logic model and evaluation plan, including subsequent data collection; (4) Provide a timeline for conducting the evaluation and include staff assignments for completing the plan. The timeline must indicate that the data will be available annually for the annual performance report (APR); and (5) Dedicate sufficient funds in each budget year to cover the costs of PO 00000 Frm 00027 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 developing or refining the evaluation plan in collaboration with a third-party evaluator and the costs associated with the implementation of the evaluation plan by the third-party evaluator. (d) Demonstrate, in the narrative section of the application under ‘‘Adequacy of resources and quality of project personnel,’’ how— (1) The proposed project will ensure equal access for employment for all, including those who are members of groups that have traditionally been underrepresented based on race, color, national origin, sex, age, religion, or disability; (2) The proposed key project personnel, consultants, and subcontractors have the qualifications, subject-matter expertise, and technical experience to carry out the proposed activities, achieve the project’s intended outcomes, and develop ongoing partnerships with leading experts and organizations nationwide to inform project activities; (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. The identified project director should be, at minimum, 0.5 full-time equivalency throughout the project period; (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, general and special education teachers, paraprofessionals, principals, other school leaders, specialized instructional support personnel, TA providers, researchers, institutions of higher education (IHEs), and policy makers, E:\FR\FM\13JYN1.SGM 13JYN1 jbell on DSKJLSW7X2PROD with NOTICES Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 131 / Tuesday, July 13, 2021 / Notices among others, in its development and operation. (f) Address the following additional application requirements. The applicant must— (1) Include, in Appendix A, personnel-loading charts and timelines, as applicable, to illustrate the management plan described in the narrative; (2) Include, in the budget, attendance at the following: (i) A one and one-half day kick-off meeting in Washington, DC, or virtually, after receipt of the award, and an annual planning meeting in Washington, DC, or virtually, with the OSEP project officer, OESE staff, 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, or a virtual conference, during each year of the project period; (iii) Two annual two-day trips to attend Department briefings, Department-sponsored conferences, and other meetings, as requested by OSEP; and (iv) At least monthly, communicate and collaborate with other Departmentfunded centers to achieve project objectives; (3) Include, in the budget, a line item for an annual set-aside of 5 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; (4) Include a plan for maintaining a high-quality website, with an easy-tonavigate design, that meets government or industry-recognized standards for accessibility; (5) Include a plan for ensuring that annual project progress toward meeting project goals is posted on the project website; (6) Include, in Appendix A, a letter of agreement from each partnering organization or consultant. The letter of agreement should clearly specify the role of the partnering organization or consultant and the time needed to fulfill the commitment to the project; and (7) Include, in Appendix A, an assurance to assist OSEP and OESE with VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:47 Jul 12, 2021 Jkt 253001 the transfer of pertinent resources and products and to maintain the continuity of services to target audiences during the transition to this new award period and at the end of this award period, as appropriate. Definitions: The following definitions apply to this competition. We provide the source of the definitions in parentheses. Capacity-building services means assistance that strengthens an individual’s or organization’s ability to engage in continuous improvement and achieve expected outcomes. (NFP) Demonstrates a rationale means a key project component included in the project’s logic model is informed by research or evaluation findings that suggest the project component is likely to improve relevant outcomes. (34 CFR 77.1) Evidence-based means the proposed project component is supported by one or more of strong evidence, moderate evidence, promising evidence, or evidence that demonstrates a rationale. (34 CFR 77.1) Experimental study means a study that is designed to compare outcomes between two groups of individuals (such as students) that are otherwise equivalent except for their assignment to either a treatment group receiving a project component or a control group that does not. Randomized controlled trials, regression discontinuity design studies, and single-case design studies are the specific types of experimental studies that, depending on their design and implementation (e.g., sample attrition in randomized controlled trials and regression discontinuity design studies), can meet What Works Clearinghouse (WWC) standards without reservations as described in the WWC Handbooks: (i) A randomized controlled trial employs random assignment of, for example, students, teachers, classrooms, or schools to receive the project component being evaluated (the treatment group) or not to receive the project component (the control group). (ii) A regression discontinuity design study assigns the project component being evaluated using a measured variable (e.g., assigning students reading below a cutoff score to tutoring or developmental education classes) and controls for that variable in the analysis of outcomes. (iii) A single-case design study uses observations of a single case (e.g., a student eligible for a behavioral intervention) over time in the absence and presence of a controlled treatment manipulation to determine whether the PO 00000 Frm 00028 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 36725 outcome is systematically related to the treatment. (34 CFR 77.1) Fidelity means the delivery of instruction in the way in which it was designed to be delivered. (NFP) 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. 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. (NFP) Logic model (also referred to as a theory of action) means a framework that identifies key project components of the proposed project (i.e., the active ‘‘ingredients’’ that are hypothesized to be critical to achieving the relevant outcomes) and describes the theoretical and operational relationships among the key project components and relevant outcomes. (34 CFR 77.1) Moderate evidence means that there is evidence of effectiveness of a key project component in improving a relevant outcome for a sample that overlaps with the populations or settings proposed to receive that component, based on a relevant finding from one of the following: (i) A practice guide prepared by the WWC using version 2.1, 3.0, 4.0, or 4.1 of the WWC Handbooks reporting a ‘‘strong evidence base’’ or ‘‘moderate evidence base’’ for the corresponding practice guide recommendation; (ii) An intervention report prepared by the WWC using version 2.1, 3.0, 4.0, or 4.1 of the WWC Handbooks reporting a ‘‘positive effect’’ or ‘‘potentially positive effect’’ on a relevant outcome based on a ‘‘medium to large’’ extent of evidence, with no reporting of a ‘‘negative effect’’ or ‘‘potentially negative effect’’ on a relevant outcome; or (iii) A single experimental study or quasi-experimental design study reviewed and reported by the WWC using version 2.1, 3.0, 4.0, or 4.1 of the WWC Handbooks, or otherwise assessed by the Department using version 4.1 of the WWC Handbooks, as appropriate, and that— (A) Meets WWC standards with or without reservations; (B) Includes at least one statistically significant and positive (i.e., favorable) effect on a relevant outcome; (C) Includes no overriding statistically significant and negative effects on relevant outcomes reported in the study or in a corresponding WWC intervention report prepared under version 2.1, 3.0, 4.0, or 4.1 of the WWC Handbooks; and E:\FR\FM\13JYN1.SGM 13JYN1 jbell on DSKJLSW7X2PROD with NOTICES 36726 Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 131 / Tuesday, July 13, 2021 / Notices (D) Is based on a sample from more than one site (e.g., State, county, city, school district, or postsecondary campus) and includes at least 350 students or other individuals across sites. Multiple studies of the same project component that each meet requirements in paragraphs (iii)(A), (B), and (C) of this definition may together satisfy the requirement in this paragraph (iii)(D). (34 CFR 77.1) Project component means an activity, strategy, intervention, process, product, practice, or policy included in a project. Evidence may pertain to an individual project component or to a combination of project components (e.g., training teachers on instructional practices for English learners and follow-on coaching for these teachers). (34 CFR 77.1) Promising evidence means that there is evidence of the effectiveness of a key project component in improving a relevant outcome, based on a relevant finding from one of the following: (i) A practice guide prepared by WWC reporting a ‘‘strong evidence base’’ or ‘‘moderate evidence base’’ for the corresponding practice guide recommendation; (ii) An intervention report prepared by the WWC reporting a ‘‘positive effect’’ or ‘‘potentially positive effect’’ on a relevant outcome with no reporting of a ‘‘negative effect’’ or ‘‘potentially negative effect’’ on a relevant outcome; or (iii) A single study assessed by the Department, as appropriate, that— (A) Is an experimental study, a quasiexperimental design study, or a welldesigned and well-implemented correlational study with statistical controls for selection bias (e.g., a study using regression methods to account for differences between a treatment group and a comparison group); and (B) Includes at least one statistically significant and positive (i.e., favorable) effect on a relevant outcome. (34 CFR 77.1) Quasi-experimental design study means a study using a design that attempts to approximate an experimental study by identifying a comparison group that is similar to the treatment group in important respects. This type of study, depending on design and implementation (e.g., establishment of baseline equivalence of the groups being compared), can meet WWC standards with reservations, but cannot meet WWC standards without reservations, as described in the WWC Handbooks. (34 CFR 77.1) Regional educational agency, for the purposes of this program, means ‘‘Tribal Educational Agency’’ as defined in ESEA section 6132(b)(3), as well as VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:47 Jul 12, 2021 Jkt 253001 other educational agencies that serve regional areas. (NFP) Relevant outcome means the student outcome(s) or other outcome(s) the key project component is designed to improve, consistent with the specific goals of the program. (34 CFR 77.1) Strong evidence means that there is evidence of the effectiveness of a key project component in improving a relevant outcome for a sample that overlaps with the populations and settings proposed to receive that component, based on a relevant finding from one of the following: (i) A practice guide prepared by the WWC using version 2.1, 3.0, 4.0, or 4.1 of the WWC Handbooks reporting a ‘‘strong evidence base’’ for the corresponding practice guide recommendation; (ii) An intervention report prepared by the WWC using version 2.1, 3.0, 4.0, or 4.1 of the WWC Handbooks reporting a ‘‘positive effect’’ on a relevant outcome based on a ‘‘medium to large’’ extent of evidence, with no reporting of a ‘‘negative effect’’ or ‘‘potentially negative effect’’ on a relevant outcome; or (iii) A single experimental study reviewed and reported by the WWC using version 2.1, 3.0, 4.0, or 4.1 of the WWC Handbooks, or otherwise assessed by the Department using version 4.1 of the WWC Handbooks, as appropriate, and that— (A) Meets WWC standards without reservations; (B) Includes at least one statistically significant and positive (i.e., favorable) effect on a relevant outcome; (C) Includes no overriding statistically significant and negative effects on relevant outcomes reported in the study or in a corresponding WWC intervention report prepared under version 2.1, 3.0, 4.0, or 4.1 of the WWC Handbooks; and (D) Is based on a sample from more than one site (e.g., State, county, city, school district, or postsecondary campus) and includes at least 350 students or other individuals across sites. Multiple studies of the same project component that each meet requirements in paragraphs (iii)(A), (B), and (C) of this definition may together satisfy this requirement. (34 CFR 77.1) TA services are defined as negotiated series of activities designed to reach a valued outcome. (NFP) 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- PO 00000 Frm 00029 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 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. (NFP) Third-party evaluator is an independent and impartial program evaluator who is contracted by the grantee to conduct an objective evaluation of the project. This evaluator must not have participated in the development or implementation of any project activities, except for the evaluation activities, nor have any financial interest in the outcome of the evaluation. (NFP) 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 website by independent users. Brief communications by TA center staff with recipients, either by telephone or email, are also considered universal, general TA. (NFP) What Works Clearinghouse Handbooks (WWC Handbooks) means the standards and procedures set forth in the WWC Standards Handbook, Versions 4.0 or 4.1, and WWC Procedures Handbook, Versions 4.0 or 4.1, or in the WWC Procedures and Standards Handbook, Version 3.0 or Version 2.1 (all incorporated by reference, see § 77.2). Study findings eligible for review under WWC standards can meet WWC standards without reservations, meet WWC standards with reservations, or not meet WWC standards. WWC practice guides and intervention reports include findings from systematic reviews of evidence as described in the WWC Handbooks documentation. (34 CFR 77.1) Program Authority: Section 203 of the Educational Technical Assistance Act of 2002 (ETAA) (20 U.S.C. 9602) and section 2244 of the ESEA (20 U.S.C. 6674). Note: The project will be awarded and must be operated in a manner consistent with the nondiscrimination requirements contained in Federal civil rights laws. E:\FR\FM\13JYN1.SGM 13JYN1 Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 131 / Tuesday, July 13, 2021 / Notices 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 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 NFP. Note: The regulations in 34 CFR part 86 apply to IHEs only. jbell on DSKJLSW7X2PROD with NOTICES II. Award Information Type of Award: Cooperative agreement. Estimated Available Funds: $1,475,000 in year one; $1,500,000 in years two through five. Contingent upon the availability of funds and the quality of applications, we may make additional awards in FY 2022 from the list of unfunded applications from this competition. Maximum Award: We will not make an award exceeding $1,475,000 for a single budget period of 12 months in year one and $1,500,000 for a single budget period of 12 months in years two through five. 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: Research organizations, institutions, agencies, IHEs, or partnerships among such entities, or individuals, with the demonstrated ability or capacity to carry out the activities described in this notice, including regional entities that carried out activities under the Educational Research, Development, Dissemination, and Improvement Act of 1994 (as such Act existed on the day before November 5, 2002) and title XIII of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (as such title existed on the day before January 8, 2002). Note: If you are a nonprofit organization, under 34 CFR 75.51, you may demonstrate your nonprofit status by providing: (1) Proof that the Internal Revenue Service currently recognizes the applicant as an organization to which contributions are tax deductible under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code; (2) a statement from a State taxing body or the State attorney VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:47 Jul 12, 2021 Jkt 253001 general certifying that the organization is a nonprofit organization operating within the State and that no part of its net earnings may lawfully benefit any private shareholder or individual; (3) a certified copy of the applicant’s certificate of incorporation or similar document if it clearly establishes the nonprofit status of the applicant; or (4) any item described above if that item applies to a State or national parent organization, together with a statement by the State or parent organization that the applicant is a local nonprofit affiliate. 2. a. Cost Sharing or Matching: This competition does not require cost sharing or matching. b. Indirect Cost Rate Information: This program uses an unrestricted indirect cost rate. For more information regarding indirect costs, or to obtain a negotiated indirect cost rate, please see www2.ed.gov/about/offices/list/ocfo/ intro.html. c. Administrative Cost Limitation: This program does not include any program-specific limitation on administrative expenses. All administrative expenses must be reasonable and necessary and conform to the Cost Principles described in 2 CFR part 200 subpart E of the Uniform Guidance. 3. Subgrantees: A grantee under this competition may not award subgrants to entities to directly carry out project activities described in its application. Under 34 CFR 75.708(e), a grantee may contract for supplies, equipment, and other services in accordance with 2 CFR part 200. IV. Application and Submission Information 1. Application Submission Instructions: Applicants are required to follow the Common Instructions for Applicants to Department of Education Discretionary Grant Programs, published in the Federal Register on February 13, 2019 (84 FR 3768), and available at www.govinfo.gov/content/ pkg/FR-2019-02-13/pdf/2019-02206.pdf, which contain requirements and information on how to submit an application. 2. Intergovernmental Review: This competition is subject to Executive Order 12372 and the regulations in 34 CFR part 79. However, under 34 CFR 79.8(a), we waive intergovernmental review in order to make an award/ awards by the end of FY 2021. 3. Funding Restrictions: We reference regulations outlining funding restrictions in the Applicable Regulations section of this notice. PO 00000 Frm 00030 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 36727 4. Recommended Page Limit: The application narrative is where you, the applicant, address the selection criteria that reviewers use to evaluate your application. We recommend that you (1) limit the application narrative to no more than 70 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 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 the cover sheet; the budget section, including the narrative budget justification; 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 requirements, the resumes, the reference list, the letters of support, or the appendices. However, the recommended page limit does apply to all of the application narrative, including all text in charts, tables, figures, graphs, and screen shots. V. Application Review Information 1. Selection Criteria: The selection criteria for this competition are from 34 CFR 75.210 and are as follows: (a) Significance (10 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 specific gaps or weaknesses in services, infrastructure, or opportunities have been identified and will be addressed by the proposed project, including the nature and magnitude of those gaps or weaknesses; and (ii) The importance or magnitude of the results or outcomes likely to be attained by the proposed project. (b) Quality of project services (30 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 E:\FR\FM\13JYN1.SGM 13JYN1 jbell on DSKJLSW7X2PROD with NOTICES 36728 Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 131 / Tuesday, July 13, 2021 / Notices 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 research or demonstration 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 training or professional development services to be provided by the proposed project are of sufficient quality, intensity, and duration to lead to improvements in practice among the recipients of those services; and (v) The extent to which the TA services to be provided by the proposed project involve the use of efficient strategies, including the use of technology, as appropriate, 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 provide for examining the effectiveness of project implementation strategies; (iii) The extent to which the methods of evaluation will provide performance feedback and permit periodic assessment of progress toward achieving intended outcomes; and (iv) The extent to which the methods of evaluation include the use of objective performance measures that are clearly related to the intended outcomes of the project and will produce quantitative and qualitative data to the extent possible. (d) Adequacy of resources and quality of project personnel (20 points). (1) The Secretary considers the adequacy of resources for the proposed project and the quality of the personnel who will carry out the proposed project. (2) In determining the quality of project personnel, the Secretary considers the extent to which the VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:47 Jul 12, 2021 Jkt 253001 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 the project director or principal investigator; (ii) The qualifications, including relevant training and experience, of key project personnel; (iii) The qualifications, including relevant training and experience, of project consultants or subcontractors; (iv) The qualifications, including relevant training, experience, and independence, of the evaluator; (v) The adequacy of support, including facilities, equipment, supplies, and other resources, from the applicant organization or the lead applicant organization; (vi) The relevance and demonstrated commitment of each partner in the proposed project to the implementation and success of the project; (vii) The extent to which the budget is adequate to support the proposed project; and (viii) The extent to which the costs are reasonable in relation to the objectives, design, and potential significance of the proposed project. (e) Quality of the 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 and principal investigator and other key project personnel 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; and (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 PO 00000 Frm 00031 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 beneficiaries of services, or others, as appropriate. 2. Review and Selection Process: We remind potential applicants that in reviewing applications in any discretionary grant competition, the Secretary may consider, under 34 CFR 75.217(d)(3), the past performance of the applicant in carrying out a previous award, such as the applicant’s use of funds, achievement of project objectives, and compliance with grant conditions. The Secretary may also consider whether the applicant failed to submit a timely performance report or submitted a report of unacceptable quality. In addition, in making a competitive grant award, the Secretary 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 (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. 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 Specific Conditions: Consistent with 2 CFR 200.206, before awarding grants under this competition the Department conducts a review of the risks posed by applicants. Under 2 CFR 200.208, the Secretary may impose specific conditions, and under 2 CFR 3474.10, 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 E:\FR\FM\13JYN1.SGM 13JYN1 jbell on DSKJLSW7X2PROD with NOTICES Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 131 / Tuesday, July 13, 2021 / Notices competition to receive an award that over the course of the project period may exceed the simplified acquisition threshold (currently $250,000), under 2 CFR 200.206(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 the System for Award Management. 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. 6. In General: In accordance with the Office of Management and Budget’s guidance located at 2 CFR part 200, all applicable Federal laws, and relevant Executive guidance, the Department will review and consider applications for funding pursuant to this notice inviting applications in accordance with— (a) Selecting recipients most likely to be successful in delivering results based on the program objectives through an objective process of evaluating Federal award applications (2 CFR 200.205); (b) Prohibiting the purchase of certain telecommunication and video surveillance services or equipment in alignment with section 889 of the National Defense Authorization Act of 2019 (Pub. L. 115–232) (2 CFR 200.216); (c) Providing a preference, to the extent permitted by law, to maximize use of goods, products, and materials produced in the United States (2 CFR 200.322); and (d) Terminating agreements in whole or in part to the greatest extent authorized by law if an award no longer effectuates the program goals or agency priorities (2 CFR 200.340). 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 VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:47 Jul 12, 2021 Jkt 253001 (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. Open Licensing Requirements: Unless an exception applies, if you are awarded a grant under this competition, you will be required to openly license to the public grant deliverables created in whole, or in part, with Department grant funds. When the deliverable consists of modifications to pre-existing works, the license extends only to those modifications that can be separately identified and only to the extent that open licensing is permitted under the terms of any licenses or other legal restrictions on the use of pre-existing works. Additionally, a grantee that is awarded competitive grant funds must have a plan to disseminate these public grant deliverables. This dissemination plan can be developed and submitted after your application has been reviewed and selected for funding. For additional information on the open licensing requirements please refer to 2 CFR 3474.20. 4. 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/ PO 00000 Frm 00032 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 36729 fund/grant/apply/appforms/ appforms.html. 5. Performance Measures: For the purposes of the Government Performance and Results Act of 1993 (GPRA) and reporting under 34 CFR 75.110, the Department will use the following measures to evaluate the effectiveness of the Center, as well as the Comprehensive Centers program as a whole: • Program Performance Measure 1: The extent to which Comprehensive Center clients are satisfied with the quality, usefulness, and relevance of services provided. • Program Performance Measure 2: The extent to which Comprehensive Centers provide services and products to a wide range of recipients. • Program Performance Measure 3: The extent to which Comprehensive Centers demonstrate that capacitybuilding services were implemented as intended. • Program Performance Measure 4: The extent to which Comprehensive Centers demonstrate recipient outcomes were met. The measures apply to projects funded under this competition, and grantees are required to submit data on these measures as directed by OSEP and OESE. 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). The Department will also closely monitor the extent to which the products and services provided by the Center meet needs identified by stakeholders and may require the Center to report on such alignment in their annual and final performance reports. 6. 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; 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, whether the grantee has made substantial progress in achieving 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 E:\FR\FM\13JYN1.SGM 13JYN1 36730 Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 131 / Tuesday, July 13, 2021 / Notices from the Department (34 CFR 100.4, 104.5, 106.4, 108.8, and 110.23). ACTION: Accessible Format: On request to the program contact person listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT, individuals with disabilities can obtain this document and a copy of the application package in an accessible format. The Department will provide the requestor with an accessible format that may include Rich Text Format (RTF) or text format (txt), a thumb drive, an MP3 file, braille, large print, audiotape, or compact disc, or other accessible format. Electronic Access to This Document: The official version of this document is the document published in the Federal Register. You may access the official edition of the Federal Register and the Code of Federal Regulations at www.govinfo.gov. 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 Portable Document Format (PDF). To use PDF you must have Adobe Acrobat Reader, which is available free at the site. You may also access documents of the Department published in the Federal Register by using the article search feature at www.federalregister.gov. Specifically, through the advanced search feature at this site, you can limit your search to documents published by the Department. David Cantrell, Deputy Director, Office of Special Education Programs. Delegated the authority to perform the functions and duties of the Assistant Secretary for the Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services. Ian Rosenblum, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Policy and Programs. Delegated the authority to perform the functions and duties of the Assistant Secretary, Office of Elementary and Secondary Education. [FR Doc. 2021–14864 Filed 7–9–21; 11:15 am] BILLING CODE 4000–01–P DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION jbell on DSKJLSW7X2PROD with NOTICES [Docket No.: ED–2021–SCC–0070] Agency Information Collection Activities; Submission to the Office of Management and Budget for Review and Approval; Comment Request; Performance Report for Graduate Assistance in Areas of National Need (GAANN) Program Office of Postsecondary Education (OPE), Department of Education (ED). VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:47 Jul 12, 2021 Jkt 253001 In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, ED is proposing an extension without change of a currently approved collection. DATES: Interested persons are invited to submit comments on or before August 12, 2021. ADDRESSES: Written comments and recommendations for proposed information collection requests should be sent within 30 days of publication of this notice to www.reginfo.gov/public/ do/PRAMain. Find this information collection request by selecting ‘‘Department of Education’’ under ‘‘Currently Under Review,’’ then check ‘‘Only Show ICR for Public Comment’’ checkbox. Comments may also be sent to ICDocketmgr@ed.gov. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: For specific questions related to collection activities, please contact Rebecca Ell, 202–453–6348. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The Department of Education (ED), in accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (PRA) (44 U.S.C. 3506(c)(2)(A)), provides the general public and Federal agencies with an opportunity to comment on proposed, revised, and continuing collections of information. This helps the Department assess the impact of its information collection requirements and minimize the public’s reporting burden. It also helps the public understand the Department’s information collection requirements and provide the requested data in the desired format. ED is soliciting comments on the proposed information collection request (ICR) that is described below. The Department of Education is especially interested in public comment addressing the following issues: (1) Is this collection necessary to the proper functions of the Department; (2) will this information be processed and used in a timely manner; (3) is the estimate of burden accurate; (4) how might the Department enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and (5) how might the Department minimize the burden of this collection on the respondents, including through the use of information technology. Please note that written comments received in response to this notice will be considered public records. Title of Collection: Performance report for Graduate Assistance in Areas of National Need (GAANN) Program. OMB Control Number: 1840–0748. Type of Review: An extension without change of a currently approved collection. SUMMARY: VII. Other Information AGENCY: Notice. PO 00000 Frm 00033 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 Respondents/Affected Public: Private Sector; State, Local, and Tribal Governments . Total Estimated Number of Annual Responses: 291. Total Estimated Number of Annual Burden Hours: 3,274. Abstract: GAANN grantees must submit a performance report annually. In addition, grantees are required to submit a supplement to the final performance report two years after submission of their final report. The reports are used to evaluate grantee performance. Further, the data from the reports will be aggregated to evaluate the accomplishments and impact of the GAANN Program as a whole. Results will be reported to the Secretary in order to respond to GPRA requirements. Dated: July 7, 2021. Juliana Pearson, PRA Coordinator, Strategic Collections and Clearance, Governance and Strategy Division, Office of Chief Data Officer, Office of Planning, Evaluation and Policy Development. [FR Doc. 2021–14786 Filed 7–12–21; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4000–01–P DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Advanced Scientific Computing Advisory Committee Office of Science, Department of Energy. ACTION: Notice of open meeting. AGENCY: This notice announces a meeting of the Advanced Scientific Computing Advisory Committee (ASCAC). The Federal Advisory Committee Act requires that public notice of these meetings be announced in the Federal Register. DATES: Thursday, July 29, 2021; 1:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. EDT. ADDRESSES: Teleconference: Remote attendance of the ASCAC meeting will be possible via Zoom. Instructions will be posted on the Committee’s website at: (https://science.energy.gov/ascr/ ascac/) prior to the meeting and can also be obtained by contacting Christine Chalk by email at (christine.chalk@ science.doe.gov), or by phone at (301) 903–7486. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Christine Chalk, Office of Advanced Scientific Computing Research; SC–31/ Germantown Building; U.S. Department of Energy; 1000 Independence Avenue SW; Washington, DC 20585–1290; Telephone (301) 903–7486; email: christine.chalk@science.doe.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: SUMMARY: E:\FR\FM\13JYN1.SGM 13JYN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 86, Number 131 (Tuesday, July 13, 2021)]
[Notices]
[Pages 36722-36730]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2021-14864]


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

DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION


Applications for New Awards; National Comprehensive Center on 
Improving Literacy for Students With Disabilities

AGENCY: Offices of Elementary and Secondary Education and Special 
Education and Rehabilitative Services, Department of Education.

ACTION: Notice.

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

SUMMARY: The Department of Education (Department) is issuing a notice 
inviting applications for a new award for fiscal year (FY) 2021 for a 
National Comprehensive Center on Improving Literacy for Students with 
Disabilities (Comprehensive Centers program), Assistance Listing Number 
84.283D. This notice relates to the approved information collection 
under OMB control number 1894-0006.

DATES: 
    Applications available: July 13, 2021.
    Deadline for transmittal of applications: September 1, 2021.
    Pre-Application Webinar Information: No later than July 19, 2021, 
the Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP) will post a pre-
recorded informational webinar designed to provide technical assistance 
(TA) to interested applicants.

ADDRESSES: For the addresses for obtaining and submitting an 
application, please refer to our Common Instructions for Applicants to 
Department of Education Discretionary Grant Programs, published in the 
Federal Register on February 13, 2019 (84 FR 3768), and available at 
www.govinfo.gov/content/pkg/FR-2019-02-13/pdf/2019-02206.pdf.
    The webinar may be found at www2.ed.gov/fund/grant/apply/osep/new-osep-grants.html.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Tina Diamond, U.S. Department of 
Education, 400 Maryland Avenue SW, Room 5142, Potomac Center Plaza, 
Washington, DC 20202-5076. Telephone: (202) 245-6723. Email: 
[email protected].
    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 purpose of the National Comprehensive 
Center on Improving Literacy for Students with Disabilities (Center) is 
to identify or develop evidence-based literacy assessment tools and 
professional development activities and identify evidence-based 
instruction, strategies, and accommodations for students at risk of not 
attaining full literacy skills due to a disability, including dyslexia 
impacting reading or writing, or developmental delay impacting reading, 
writing, language processing, comprehension, or executive functioning. 
The Center will also disseminate its products and information on 
evidence-based literacy to families, SEAs, LEAs, REAs, and schools.
    Priority: This priority is from the notice of final priority, 
requirement, and definitions (NFP) for this program published elsewhere 
in this issue of the Federal Register.
    Absolute Priority: For FY 2021 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 Comprehensive Center on Improving Literacy for Students 
with Disabilities.
    Background:
    Section 2244 of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, as 
amended (ESEA) requires the Secretary to establish a comprehensive 
center on students at risk of not attaining full literacy skills due to 
a disability. Comprehensive centers are typically administered by the 
Office of Elementary and Secondary Education (OESE). OESE is funding 
this Center; however, because of the Center's subject matter, it will 
be administered jointly by OESE and OSEP in the Office of Special 
Education and Rehabilitative Services (OSERS).
    The project is designed to improve implementation of evidence-based 
literacy practices in both teacher classroom and remote learning 
environments. With respect to remote learning, the priority is intended 
to ensure that teachers have the training and support they need to 
implement evidence-based literacy practices during remote instruction 
for students with disabilities, including students with dyslexia 
impacting reading or writing, or developmental delay impacting reading, 
writing, language processing, comprehension, or executive functioning. 
Remote learning plays a critical role in regular instruction and can 
serve as a crucial link allowing high-quality teaching and learning to 
continue when regular instruction is disrupted.
    Priority:
    The purpose of this priority is to fund a cooperative agreement to 
establish and operate a National Comprehensive Center on Improving 
Literacy for Students with Disabilities (Center) for children in early 
childhood education programs through high school. The Center must--
    (a) Identify or develop free or low-cost evidence-based assessment 
tools for identifying students at risk of not attaining full literacy 
skills due to a disability, including dyslexia impacting reading or 
writing, or developmental delay impacting reading, writing, language 
processing, comprehension, or executive functioning;
    (b) Identify evidence-based literacy instruction, strategies, and 
accommodations, including assistive technology, designed to meet the 
specific needs of such students;
    (c) Provide families of such students with information to assist 
such students;
    (d) Identify or develop evidence-based professional development for 
teachers, paraprofessionals, principals, other school leaders, and 
specialized instructional support personnel to--
    (1) Understand early indicators of students at risk of not 
attaining full literacy skills due to a disability, including dyslexia 
impacting reading or writing, or developmental delay impacting reading, 
writing, language processing, comprehension, or executive functioning;
    (2) Use evidence-based screening assessments for early 
identification of

[[Page 36723]]

such students beginning not later than kindergarten; \1\ and
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \1\ Applicants are encouraged to identify or develop 
professional development for using evidence-based screening 
assessments for early identification of children in early childhood 
or prekindergarten programs, as well.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    (3) Implement evidence-based instruction designed to meet the 
specific needs of such students; and
    (e) Disseminate the products of the comprehensive center to 
regionally diverse SEAs, REAs, LEAs, and schools, including, as 
appropriate, through partnerships with other comprehensive centers 
established under section 203 of the Educational Technical Assistance 
Act of 2002 (20 U.S.C. 9602), and regional educational laboratories 
established under section 174 of the Education Sciences Reform Act of 
2002 (20 U.S.C. 9564).
    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,'' how the proposed project will--
    (1) Address current and emerging training and information needs of 
SEAs, REAs, LEAs, TA centers, schools, and practitioners to select and 
implement teacher classroom and remote learning environment evidence-
based practices (EBPs) that will improve literacy outcomes for students 
with disabilities, including students with dyslexia impacting reading 
or writing, or developmental delay impacting reading, writing, language 
processing, comprehension, or executive functioning. To meet this 
requirement, the applicant must--
    (i) Demonstrate knowledge of current and emerging EBPs, which can 
be used in reading and literacy-related teacher classroom and remote 
learning environment instruction, screening, assessment, and 
identification or diagnosis of students at risk for not attaining full 
literacy skills due to a disability, including dyslexia impacting 
reading or writing, or developmental delay impacting reading, writing, 
language processing, comprehension, or executive functioning. This 
includes demonstrating knowledge of current and emerging reading and 
literacy-related EBPs for students who are English learners; students 
from a variety of settings (e.g., rural, suburban, urban); students 
from low-income families; and other educationally disadvantaged 
students; or
    (ii) Demonstrate knowledge of, previous experience with, and 
results of using creative approaches and implementing in-person and 
virtual TA strategies to provide capacity-building services and 
disseminate teacher classroom and remote learning environment EBPs to a 
variety of entities, including parents, SEAs, REAs, LEAs, schools, Head 
Start, and other early childhood programs;
    (2) Demonstrate a record of improving outcomes in literacy 
achievement for students at risk for not attaining full literacy skills 
due to a disability, including dyslexia impacting reading or writing, 
or developmental delay impacting reading, writing, language processing, 
comprehension, or executive functioning, in order to better prepare 
them to compete in a global economy; and
    (3) Demonstrate a record of improving the adoption, implementation, 
and sustainment of teacher classroom and remote learning environment 
EBPs in literacy instruction for students at risk for not attaining 
full literacy skills due to a disability, including dyslexia impacting 
reading or writing, or developmental delay impacting reading, writing, 
language processing, comprehension, or executive functioning.
    (b) Demonstrate, in the narrative section of the application under 
``Quality of 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, sex, 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 products and services meet the needs of the 
intended recipients of the grant;
    (2) Achieve its goals, objectives, and intended short-term, 
intermediate, and long-term outcomes. To meet this requirement, the 
applicant must provide--
    (i) A five-year plan for the Center to identify current and 
emerging training and information needs and to address the priority;
    (ii) Measurable intended project outcomes; and
    (iii) In Appendix A, the logic model (as defined in 34 CFR 77.1) by 
which the proposed project will achieve its intended outcomes that 
depicts, at a minimum, the goals, activities, outputs, and intended 
short-term, intermediate, and long-term outcomes of the proposed 
project;
    (3) Use a conceptual framework (and provide a copy in Appendix A) 
to develop project plans and activities, and describe any underlying 
concepts, assumptions, expectations, or theories, as well as the 
presumed relationships or linkages among these variables, and any 
empirical support for this framework;
    Note: The following websites provide more information on logic 
models and conceptual frameworks: www.osepideasthatwork.org/logicModel, 
www.osepideasthatwork.org/resources-grantees/program-areas/ta-ta/tad-project-logic-model-and-conceptual-framework, and 
www.federalregister.gov/d/2019-06583.
    (4) Be based on current research and make use of EBPs in the 
development and delivery of its products and services. To meet this 
requirement, the applicant must describe--
    (i) The current research on teacher classroom and remote learning 
environment EBPs for literacy instruction for students at risk for not 
attaining full literacy skills due to a disability, including dyslexia 
impacting reading or writing, or developmental delay impacting reading, 
writing, language processing, comprehension, or executive functioning;
    (ii) The current research on teacher classroom and remote learning 
environment EBPs for assessing students at risk for not attaining full 
literacy skills due to a disability, including dyslexia impacting 
reading or writing, or developmental delay impacting reading, writing, 
language processing, comprehension, or executive functioning. This 
should include the current research on screening assessments for 
dyslexia and other literacy-related disabilities that are evidence-
based, psychometrically valid, free or low-cost, efficient to scale, 
and readily available for use; and
    (iii) The current research about adult learning principles in in-
person and virtual settings and implementation science that will inform 
the proposed TA; and
    (5) Develop products or refine or update publicly available 
existing products and provide in-person and virtual services that are 
of high quality and sufficient intensity and duration to achieve the 
intended measurable outcomes of the proposed project. To address this 
requirement, the applicant must describe--
    (i) How it proposes to identify or develop the knowledge base in 
teacher classroom and remote learning environment literacy instruction 
for students at risk of not attaining full literacy skills due to a 
disability;

[[Page 36724]]

    (ii) Its proposed approach to universal, general TA, which must 
identify the intended recipients, including the type and number of 
recipients, that will receive the products and services under this 
approach;
    (iii) Its proposed approach to targeted, specialized TA, which must 
identify--
    (A) The intended recipients, including the type and number of 
recipients, that will receive the products and services under this 
approach, a description of new or existing publicly available products 
that may be used and services that the Center proposes to make 
available, and the expected impact of those products and services under 
this approach; and
    (B) Its proposed approach to measure the readiness of potential TA 
recipients to work with the project, assessing, at a minimum, their 
current infrastructure, available resources, and ability to build 
capacity at the local level; and
    (iv) Its proposed approach to intensive, sustained TA, which must 
identify--
    (A) The intended recipients, including the type and number of 
recipients, that will receive the products and services, a description 
of new or existing publicly available products that may be used and 
services that the Center proposes to make available, and the expected 
impact of those products and services under this approach;
    (B) Its proposed approach to measure the readiness of the target 
audiences 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 
the SEA, REA, LEA, school, and early childhood education program 
levels;
    (C) Its proposed plan for assisting SEAs, REAs, and LEAs to build 
or enhance in-person and virtual training systems that include 
capacity-building services and professional development based on adult 
learning principles and coaching; and
    (D) Its proposed plan for working with appropriate levels of the 
education system (e.g., SEAs, regional TA providers, districts, 
schools, early childhood education programs, families) to ensure that 
there is communication between each level and that there are systems in 
place to support the use of teacher classroom and remote learning 
environment EBPs for literacy instruction;
    (6) Partner with the National Comprehensive Center and at least one 
of the other federally funded comprehensive centers, regional 
educational laboratories, equity assistance centers, OSEP- and other 
related federally funded TA Centers, parent training and information 
and community parent resource centers funded by the Department and OSEP 
(e.g., Center for Parent Information and Resources and Parent Technical 
Assistance Centers), and other related organizations to refine or 
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; and
    (iii) How the proposed project will use non-project resources to 
achieve the intended project outcomes; and
    (7) Develop a dissemination plan that describes how the applicant 
will systematically distribute information, products, and services to 
varied intended audiences, using a variety of in-person and virtual 
dissemination strategies, to promote awareness and use of the Center's 
products and services.
    (c) In the narrative section of the application under ``Quality of 
the project evaluation,'' include an evaluation plan for the project 
developed in consultation with and implemented by a third-party 
evaluator. The evaluation plan must--
    (1) Articulate formative and summative evaluation questions, 
including important process and outcome evaluation questions, that are 
linked directly to the project's proposed logic model required in 
paragraph (b)(2)(iii) of this notice;
    (2) Describe how progress in and fidelity of implementation, as 
well as project short-term, intermediate, and long-term outcomes, will 
be measured to answer the evaluation questions. Specify the measures 
and associated instruments or sources for data appropriate to the 
evaluation questions. Include information regarding reliability and 
validity of measures where appropriate;
    (3) Describe strategies for analyzing data and how data collected 
as part of this plan will be used to inform and improve service 
delivery over the course of the project and to refine the proposed 
logic model and evaluation plan, including subsequent data collection;
    (4) Provide a timeline for conducting the evaluation and include 
staff assignments for completing the plan. The timeline must indicate 
that the data will be available annually for the annual performance 
report (APR); and
    (5) Dedicate sufficient funds in each budget year to cover the 
costs of developing or refining the evaluation plan in collaboration 
with a third-party evaluator and the costs associated with the 
implementation of the evaluation plan by the third-party evaluator.
    (d) Demonstrate, in the narrative section of the application under 
``Adequacy of resources and quality of project personnel,'' how--
    (1) The proposed project will ensure equal access for employment 
for all, including those who are members of groups that have 
traditionally been underrepresented based on race, color, national 
origin, sex, age, religion, or disability;
    (2) The proposed key project personnel, consultants, and 
subcontractors have the qualifications, subject-matter expertise, and 
technical experience to carry out the proposed activities, achieve the 
project's intended outcomes, and develop ongoing partnerships with 
leading experts and organizations nationwide to inform project 
activities;
    (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. The identified 
project director should be, at minimum, 0.5 full-time equivalency 
throughout the project period;
    (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, general and special 
education teachers, paraprofessionals, principals, other school 
leaders, specialized instructional support personnel, TA providers, 
researchers, institutions of higher education (IHEs), and policy 
makers,

[[Page 36725]]

among others, in its development and operation.
    (f) Address the following additional application requirements. The 
applicant must--
    (1) Include, in Appendix A, personnel-loading charts and timelines, 
as applicable, to illustrate the management plan described in the 
narrative;
    (2) Include, in the budget, attendance at the following:
    (i) A one and one-half day kick-off meeting in Washington, DC, or 
virtually, after receipt of the award, and an annual planning meeting 
in Washington, DC, or virtually, with the OSEP project officer, OESE 
staff, 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, or a virtual conference, during each year of the 
project period;
    (iii) Two annual two-day trips to attend Department briefings, 
Department-sponsored conferences, and other meetings, as requested by 
OSEP; and
    (iv) At least monthly, communicate and collaborate with other 
Department-funded centers to achieve project objectives;
    (3) Include, in the budget, a line item for an annual set-aside of 
5 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;
    (4) Include a plan for maintaining a high-quality website, with an 
easy-to-navigate design, that meets government or industry-recognized 
standards for accessibility;
    (5) Include a plan for ensuring that annual project progress toward 
meeting project goals is posted on the project website;
    (6) Include, in Appendix A, a letter of agreement from each 
partnering organization or consultant. The letter of agreement should 
clearly specify the role of the partnering organization or consultant 
and the time needed to fulfill the commitment to the project; and
    (7) Include, in Appendix A, an assurance to assist OSEP and OESE 
with the transfer of pertinent resources and products and to maintain 
the continuity of services to target audiences during the transition to 
this new award period and at the end of this award period, as 
appropriate.
    Definitions:
    The following definitions apply to this competition. We provide the 
source of the definitions in parentheses.
    Capacity-building services means assistance that strengthens an 
individual's or organization's ability to engage in continuous 
improvement and achieve expected outcomes. (NFP)
    Demonstrates a rationale means a key project component included in 
the project's logic model is informed by research or evaluation 
findings that suggest the project component is likely to improve 
relevant outcomes. (34 CFR 77.1)
    Evidence-based means the proposed project component is supported by 
one or more of strong evidence, moderate evidence, promising evidence, 
or evidence that demonstrates a rationale. (34 CFR 77.1)
    Experimental study means a study that is designed to compare 
outcomes between two groups of individuals (such as students) that are 
otherwise equivalent except for their assignment to either a treatment 
group receiving a project component or a control group that does not. 
Randomized controlled trials, regression discontinuity design studies, 
and single-case design studies are the specific types of experimental 
studies that, depending on their design and implementation (e.g., 
sample attrition in randomized controlled trials and regression 
discontinuity design studies), can meet What Works Clearinghouse (WWC) 
standards without reservations as described in the WWC Handbooks:
    (i) A randomized controlled trial employs random assignment of, for 
example, students, teachers, classrooms, or schools to receive the 
project component being evaluated (the treatment group) or not to 
receive the project component (the control group).
    (ii) A regression discontinuity design study assigns the project 
component being evaluated using a measured variable (e.g., assigning 
students reading below a cutoff score to tutoring or developmental 
education classes) and controls for that variable in the analysis of 
outcomes.
    (iii) A single-case design study uses observations of a single case 
(e.g., a student eligible for a behavioral intervention) over time in 
the absence and presence of a controlled treatment manipulation to 
determine whether the outcome is systematically related to the 
treatment. (34 CFR 77.1)
    Fidelity means the delivery of instruction in the way in which it 
was designed to be delivered. (NFP)
    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. 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. (NFP)
    Logic model (also referred to as a theory of action) means a 
framework that identifies key project components of the proposed 
project (i.e., the active ``ingredients'' that are hypothesized to be 
critical to achieving the relevant outcomes) and describes the 
theoretical and operational relationships among the key project 
components and relevant outcomes. (34 CFR 77.1)
    Moderate evidence means that there is evidence of effectiveness of 
a key project component in improving a relevant outcome for a sample 
that overlaps with the populations or settings proposed to receive that 
component, based on a relevant finding from one of the following:
    (i) A practice guide prepared by the WWC using version 2.1, 3.0, 
4.0, or 4.1 of the WWC Handbooks reporting a ``strong evidence base'' 
or ``moderate evidence base'' for the corresponding practice guide 
recommendation;
    (ii) An intervention report prepared by the WWC using version 2.1, 
3.0, 4.0, or 4.1 of the WWC Handbooks reporting a ``positive effect'' 
or ``potentially positive effect'' on a relevant outcome based on a 
``medium to large'' extent of evidence, with no reporting of a 
``negative effect'' or ``potentially negative effect'' on a relevant 
outcome; or
    (iii) A single experimental study or quasi-experimental design 
study reviewed and reported by the WWC using version 2.1, 3.0, 4.0, or 
4.1 of the WWC Handbooks, or otherwise assessed by the Department using 
version 4.1 of the WWC Handbooks, as appropriate, and that--
    (A) Meets WWC standards with or without reservations;
    (B) Includes at least one statistically significant and positive 
(i.e., favorable) effect on a relevant outcome;
    (C) Includes no overriding statistically significant and negative 
effects on relevant outcomes reported in the study or in a 
corresponding WWC intervention report prepared under version 2.1, 3.0, 
4.0, or 4.1 of the WWC Handbooks; and

[[Page 36726]]

    (D) Is based on a sample from more than one site (e.g., State, 
county, city, school district, or postsecondary campus) and includes at 
least 350 students or other individuals across sites. Multiple studies 
of the same project component that each meet requirements in paragraphs 
(iii)(A), (B), and (C) of this definition may together satisfy the 
requirement in this paragraph (iii)(D). (34 CFR 77.1)
    Project component means an activity, strategy, intervention, 
process, product, practice, or policy included in a project. Evidence 
may pertain to an individual project component or to a combination of 
project components (e.g., training teachers on instructional practices 
for English learners and follow-on coaching for these teachers). (34 
CFR 77.1)
    Promising evidence means that there is evidence of the 
effectiveness of a key project component in improving a relevant 
outcome, based on a relevant finding from one of the following:
    (i) A practice guide prepared by WWC reporting a ``strong evidence 
base'' or ``moderate evidence base'' for the corresponding practice 
guide recommendation;
    (ii) An intervention report prepared by the WWC reporting a 
``positive effect'' or ``potentially positive effect'' on a relevant 
outcome with no reporting of a ``negative effect'' or ``potentially 
negative effect'' on a relevant outcome; or
    (iii) A single study assessed by the Department, as appropriate, 
that--
    (A) Is an experimental study, a quasi-experimental design study, or 
a well-designed and well-implemented correlational study with 
statistical controls for selection bias (e.g., a study using regression 
methods to account for differences between a treatment group and a 
comparison group); and
    (B) Includes at least one statistically significant and positive 
(i.e., favorable) effect on a relevant outcome. (34 CFR 77.1)
    Quasi-experimental design study means a study using a design that 
attempts to approximate an experimental study by identifying a 
comparison group that is similar to the treatment group in important 
respects. This type of study, depending on design and implementation 
(e.g., establishment of baseline equivalence of the groups being 
compared), can meet WWC standards with reservations, but cannot meet 
WWC standards without reservations, as described in the WWC Handbooks. 
(34 CFR 77.1)
    Regional educational agency, for the purposes of this program, 
means ``Tribal Educational Agency'' as defined in ESEA section 
6132(b)(3), as well as other educational agencies that serve regional 
areas. (NFP)
    Relevant outcome means the student outcome(s) or other outcome(s) 
the key project component is designed to improve, consistent with the 
specific goals of the program. (34 CFR 77.1)
    Strong evidence means that there is evidence of the effectiveness 
of a key project component in improving a relevant outcome for a sample 
that overlaps with the populations and settings proposed to receive 
that component, based on a relevant finding from one of the following:
    (i) A practice guide prepared by the WWC using version 2.1, 3.0, 
4.0, or 4.1 of the WWC Handbooks reporting a ``strong evidence base'' 
for the corresponding practice guide recommendation;
    (ii) An intervention report prepared by the WWC using version 2.1, 
3.0, 4.0, or 4.1 of the WWC Handbooks reporting a ``positive effect'' 
on a relevant outcome based on a ``medium to large'' extent of 
evidence, with no reporting of a ``negative effect'' or ``potentially 
negative effect'' on a relevant outcome; or
    (iii) A single experimental study reviewed and reported by the WWC 
using version 2.1, 3.0, 4.0, or 4.1 of the WWC Handbooks, or otherwise 
assessed by the Department using version 4.1 of the WWC Handbooks, as 
appropriate, and that--
    (A) Meets WWC standards without reservations;
    (B) Includes at least one statistically significant and positive 
(i.e., favorable) effect on a relevant outcome;
    (C) Includes no overriding statistically significant and negative 
effects on relevant outcomes reported in the study or in a 
corresponding WWC intervention report prepared under version 2.1, 3.0, 
4.0, or 4.1 of the WWC Handbooks; and
    (D) Is based on a sample from more than one site (e.g., State, 
county, city, school district, or postsecondary campus) and includes at 
least 350 students or other individuals across sites. Multiple studies 
of the same project component that each meet requirements in paragraphs 
(iii)(A), (B), and (C) of this definition may together satisfy this 
requirement. (34 CFR 77.1)
    TA services are defined as negotiated series of activities designed 
to reach a valued outcome. (NFP)
    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. (NFP)
    Third-party evaluator is an independent and impartial program 
evaluator who is contracted by the grantee to conduct an objective 
evaluation of the project. This evaluator must not have participated in 
the development or implementation of any project activities, except for 
the evaluation activities, nor have any financial interest in the 
outcome of the evaluation. (NFP)
    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 
website by independent users. Brief communications by TA center staff 
with recipients, either by telephone or email, are also considered 
universal, general TA. (NFP)
    What Works Clearinghouse Handbooks (WWC Handbooks) means the 
standards and procedures set forth in the WWC Standards Handbook, 
Versions 4.0 or 4.1, and WWC Procedures Handbook, Versions 4.0 or 4.1, 
or in the WWC Procedures and Standards Handbook, Version 3.0 or Version 
2.1 (all incorporated by reference, see Sec.  77.2). Study findings 
eligible for review under WWC standards can meet WWC standards without 
reservations, meet WWC standards with reservations, or not meet WWC 
standards. WWC practice guides and intervention reports include 
findings from systematic reviews of evidence as described in the WWC 
Handbooks documentation. (34 CFR 77.1)
    Program Authority: Section 203 of the Educational Technical 
Assistance Act of 2002 (ETAA) (20 U.S.C. 9602) and section 2244 of the 
ESEA (20 U.S.C. 6674).
    Note: The project will be awarded and must be operated in a manner 
consistent with the nondiscrimination requirements contained in Federal 
civil rights laws.

[[Page 36727]]

    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 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 NFP.
    Note: The regulations in 34 CFR part 86 apply to IHEs only.

II. Award Information

    Type of Award: Cooperative agreement.
    Estimated Available Funds: $1,475,000 in year one; $1,500,000 in 
years two through five.
    Contingent upon the availability of funds and the quality of 
applications, we may make additional awards in FY 2022 from the list of 
unfunded applications from this competition.
    Maximum Award: We will not make an award exceeding $1,475,000 for a 
single budget period of 12 months in year one and $1,500,000 for a 
single budget period of 12 months in years two through five.
    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: Research organizations, institutions, 
agencies, IHEs, or partnerships among such entities, or individuals, 
with the demonstrated ability or capacity to carry out the activities 
described in this notice, including regional entities that carried out 
activities under the Educational Research, Development, Dissemination, 
and Improvement Act of 1994 (as such Act existed on the day before 
November 5, 2002) and title XIII of the Elementary and Secondary 
Education Act of 1965 (as such title existed on the day before January 
8, 2002).
    Note: If you are a nonprofit organization, under 34 CFR 75.51, you 
may demonstrate your nonprofit status by providing: (1) Proof that the 
Internal Revenue Service currently recognizes the applicant as an 
organization to which contributions are tax deductible under section 
501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code; (2) a statement from a State 
taxing body or the State attorney general certifying that the 
organization is a nonprofit organization operating within the State and 
that no part of its net earnings may lawfully benefit any private 
shareholder or individual; (3) a certified copy of the applicant's 
certificate of incorporation or similar document if it clearly 
establishes the nonprofit status of the applicant; or (4) any item 
described above if that item applies to a State or national parent 
organization, together with a statement by the State or parent 
organization that the applicant is a local nonprofit affiliate.
    2. a. Cost Sharing or Matching: This competition does not require 
cost sharing or matching.
    b. Indirect Cost Rate Information: This program uses an 
unrestricted indirect cost rate. For more information regarding 
indirect costs, or to obtain a negotiated indirect cost rate, please 
see www2.ed.gov/about/offices/list/ocfo/intro.html.
    c. Administrative Cost Limitation: This program does not include 
any program-specific limitation on administrative expenses. All 
administrative expenses must be reasonable and necessary and conform to 
the Cost Principles described in 2 CFR part 200 subpart E of the 
Uniform Guidance.
    3. Subgrantees: A grantee under this competition may not award 
subgrants to entities to directly carry out project activities 
described in its application. Under 34 CFR 75.708(e), a grantee may 
contract for supplies, equipment, and other services in accordance with 
2 CFR part 200.

IV. Application and Submission Information

    1. Application Submission Instructions: Applicants are required to 
follow the Common Instructions for Applicants to Department of 
Education Discretionary Grant Programs, published in the Federal 
Register on February 13, 2019 (84 FR 3768), and available at 
www.govinfo.gov/content/pkg/FR-2019-02-13/pdf/2019-02206.pdf, which 
contain requirements and information on how to submit an application.
    2. Intergovernmental Review: This competition is subject to 
Executive Order 12372 and the regulations in 34 CFR part 79. However, 
under 34 CFR 79.8(a), we waive intergovernmental review in order to 
make an award/awards by the end of FY 2021.
    3. Funding Restrictions: We reference regulations outlining funding 
restrictions in the Applicable Regulations section of this notice.
    4. Recommended Page Limit: The application narrative is where you, 
the applicant, address the selection criteria that reviewers use to 
evaluate your application. We recommend that you (1) limit the 
application narrative to no more than 70 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 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 the cover sheet; the 
budget section, including the narrative budget justification; 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 requirements, the resumes, the 
reference list, the letters of support, or the appendices. However, the 
recommended page limit does apply to all of the application narrative, 
including all text in charts, tables, figures, graphs, and screen 
shots.

V. Application Review Information

    1. Selection Criteria: The selection criteria for this competition 
are from 34 CFR 75.210 and are as follows:
    (a) Significance (10 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 specific gaps or weaknesses in services, 
infrastructure, or opportunities have been identified and will be 
addressed by the proposed project, including the nature and magnitude 
of those gaps or weaknesses; and
    (ii) The importance or magnitude of the results or outcomes likely 
to be attained by the proposed project.
    (b) Quality of project services (30 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

[[Page 36728]]

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 research or demonstration 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 training or professional development 
services to be provided by the proposed project are of sufficient 
quality, intensity, and duration to lead to improvements in practice 
among the recipients of those services; and
    (v) The extent to which the TA services to be provided by the 
proposed project involve the use of efficient strategies, including the 
use of technology, as appropriate, 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 provide for 
examining the effectiveness of project implementation strategies;
    (iii) The extent to which the methods of evaluation will provide 
performance feedback and permit periodic assessment of progress toward 
achieving intended outcomes; and
    (iv) The extent to which the methods of evaluation include the use 
of objective performance measures that are clearly related to the 
intended outcomes of the project and will produce quantitative and 
qualitative data to the extent possible.
    (d) Adequacy of resources and quality of project personnel (20 
points).
    (1) The Secretary considers the adequacy of resources for the 
proposed project and the quality of the personnel who will carry out 
the proposed project.
    (2) In determining the quality of project personnel, 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 the project director or principal investigator;
    (ii) The qualifications, including relevant training and 
experience, of key project personnel;
    (iii) The qualifications, including relevant training and 
experience, of project consultants or subcontractors;
    (iv) The qualifications, including relevant training, experience, 
and independence, of the evaluator;
    (v) The adequacy of support, including facilities, equipment, 
supplies, and other resources, from the applicant organization or the 
lead applicant organization;
    (vi) The relevance and demonstrated commitment of each partner in 
the proposed project to the implementation and success of the project;
    (vii) The extent to which the budget is adequate to support the 
proposed project; and
    (viii) The extent to which the costs are reasonable in relation to 
the objectives, design, and potential significance of the proposed 
project.
    (e) Quality of the 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 and principal investigator and other key project personnel 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; and
    (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: We remind potential applicants 
that in reviewing applications in any discretionary grant competition, 
the Secretary may consider, under 34 CFR 75.217(d)(3), the past 
performance of the applicant in carrying out a previous award, such as 
the applicant's use of funds, achievement of project objectives, and 
compliance with grant conditions. The Secretary may also consider 
whether the applicant failed to submit a timely performance report or 
submitted a report of unacceptable quality.
    In addition, in making a competitive grant award, the Secretary 
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 
(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. 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 Specific Conditions: Consistent with 2 CFR 
200.206, before awarding grants under this competition the Department 
conducts a review of the risks posed by applicants. Under 2 CFR 
200.208, the Secretary may impose specific conditions, and under 2 CFR 
3474.10, 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

[[Page 36729]]

competition to receive an award that over the course of the project 
period may exceed the simplified acquisition threshold (currently 
$250,000), under 2 CFR 200.206(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 the System for Award Management. 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.
    6. In General: In accordance with the Office of Management and 
Budget's guidance located at 2 CFR part 200, all applicable Federal 
laws, and relevant Executive guidance, the Department will review and 
consider applications for funding pursuant to this notice inviting 
applications in accordance with--
    (a) Selecting recipients most likely to be successful in delivering 
results based on the program objectives through an objective process of 
evaluating Federal award applications (2 CFR 200.205);
    (b) Prohibiting the purchase of certain telecommunication and video 
surveillance services or equipment in alignment with section 889 of the 
National Defense Authorization Act of 2019 (Pub. L. 115-232) (2 CFR 
200.216);
    (c) Providing a preference, to the extent permitted by law, to 
maximize use of goods, products, and materials produced in the United 
States (2 CFR 200.322); and
    (d) Terminating agreements in whole or in part to the greatest 
extent authorized by law if an award no longer effectuates the program 
goals or agency priorities (2 CFR 200.340).

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. Open Licensing Requirements: Unless an exception applies, if you 
are awarded a grant under this competition, you will be required to 
openly license to the public grant deliverables created in whole, or in 
part, with Department grant funds. When the deliverable consists of 
modifications to pre-existing works, the license extends only to those 
modifications that can be separately identified and only to the extent 
that open licensing is permitted under the terms of any licenses or 
other legal restrictions on the use of pre-existing works. 
Additionally, a grantee that is awarded competitive grant funds must 
have a plan to disseminate these public grant deliverables. This 
dissemination plan can be developed and submitted after your 
application has been reviewed and selected for funding. For additional 
information on the open licensing requirements please refer to 2 CFR 
3474.20.
    4. 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.
    5. Performance Measures: For the purposes of the Government 
Performance and Results Act of 1993 (GPRA) and reporting under 34 CFR 
75.110, the Department will use the following measures to evaluate the 
effectiveness of the Center, as well as the Comprehensive Centers 
program as a whole:
     Program Performance Measure 1: The extent to which 
Comprehensive Center clients are satisfied with the quality, 
usefulness, and relevance of services provided.
     Program Performance Measure 2: The extent to which 
Comprehensive Centers provide services and products to a wide range of 
recipients.
     Program Performance Measure 3: The extent to which 
Comprehensive Centers demonstrate that capacity-building services were 
implemented as intended.
     Program Performance Measure 4: The extent to which 
Comprehensive Centers demonstrate recipient outcomes were met.
    The measures apply to projects funded under this competition, and 
grantees are required to submit data on these measures as directed by 
OSEP and OESE.
    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).
    The Department will also closely monitor the extent to which the 
products and services provided by the Center meet needs identified by 
stakeholders and may require the Center to report on such alignment in 
their annual and final performance reports.
    6. 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; 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, whether 
the grantee has made substantial progress in achieving 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

[[Page 36730]]

from the Department (34 CFR 100.4, 104.5, 106.4, 108.8, and 110.23).

VII. Other Information

    Accessible Format: On request to the program contact person listed 
under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT, individuals with disabilities 
can obtain this document and a copy of the application package in an 
accessible format. The Department will provide the requestor with an 
accessible format that may include Rich Text Format (RTF) or text 
format (txt), a thumb drive, an MP3 file, braille, large print, 
audiotape, or compact disc, or other accessible format.
    Electronic Access to This Document: The official version of this 
document is the document published in the Federal Register. You may 
access the official edition of the Federal Register and the Code of 
Federal Regulations at www.govinfo.gov. 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 Portable Document Format (PDF). To 
use PDF you must have Adobe Acrobat Reader, which is available free at 
the site.
    You may also access documents of the Department published in the 
Federal Register by using the article search feature at 
www.federalregister.gov. Specifically, through the advanced search 
feature at this site, you can limit your search to documents published 
by the Department.

David Cantrell,
Deputy Director, Office of Special Education Programs. Delegated the 
authority to perform the functions and duties of the Assistant 
Secretary for the Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative 
Services.
Ian Rosenblum,
Deputy Assistant Secretary for Policy and Programs. Delegated the 
authority to perform the functions and duties of the Assistant 
Secretary, Office of Elementary and Secondary Education.
[FR Doc. 2021-14864 Filed 7-9-21; 11:15 am]
BILLING CODE 4000-01-P