A r c h i v e d  I n f o r m a t i o n


``(a) In General.--Grant funds made available under section 10973 may be used by rural eligible local educational agencies to meet the National Education Goals through programs designed to--
``(1) increase the academic achievement of rural public school children to at least the national average of such achievement, including education reform initiatives, such as--
``(A) effective public schools programs;
``(B) tutoring, mentoring, and other activities to improve academic achievement directly;
``(C) supplementary academic instruction;
``(D) efforts to improve problem-solving and higher-order critical thinking skills; and
``(E) efforts to lengthen the school day, school year, or reduce class sizes;
``(2) develop pilot projects that experiment with innovative ways to teach rural public school children more effectively;
``(3) encourage the formation of rural school consortia for the purpose of increasing efficiency and course offerings;
``(4) provide meaningful inservice training opportunities for rural public school teachers;
``(5) assist rural schools in acquiring and improving access to educational technology,
including distance learning technologies;
``(6) ensure the readiness of all rural children for school, such as--
``(A) full workday, full calendar-year comprehensive early childhood development programs;
``(B) parenting classes, including parenting classes for teenage parents, and parent involvement activities;
``(C) activities designed to coordinate prekindergarten and child care programs;
``(D) efforts to integrate developmentally appropriate prekindergarten services into the overall public school program;
``(E) improving the skills of early childhood education staff and standards for programs;
``(F) collaborative efforts with health and social service agencies to provide comprehensive services and to facilitate the transition from home to school;
``(G) establishment of comprehensive child care centers in public secondary schools for student parents and their children; and
``(H) augmenting early childhood development programs to meet the special educational and cultural needs of limited-English proficient children, children with disabilities, and migrant preschool children;
``(7) increase the graduation rates of rural public school students to at least the national average of such rate, when funds are used to serve secondary schools, such as--
``(A) dropout prevention activities and support services for students at-risk of dropping out of school;
``(B) reentry, outreach and support activities to recruit students who have dropped out of school to return to school;
``(C) development of systemwide policies and practices that encourage students to stay in school;
``(D) efforts to provide individualized student support;
``(E) collaborative activities between schools, parents, community groups, agencies, and institutions of higher education aimed at preventing individuals from dropping out of school;
``(F) programs to increase student attendance; and
``(G) alternative programs for students, especially bilingual, special education, and migrant students, who have dropped out of school or are at risk of dropping out of school;
``(8) prepare rural public school students to enter higher education, pursue careers, and exercise their responsibilities as citizens, such as--
``(A) activities designed to increase the number and percentages of students, enrolling in postsecondary educational institutions after graduation from secondary schools;
``(B) in-school youth employment, vocational education, and career education programs that improve the transition from school to work;
``(C) activities designed in collaboration with colleges and universities to assist rural public school graduates in completing higher education;
``(D) activities designed in conjunction with community colleges to provide a kindergarten through grade 14 experience for rural public school secondary school students;
``(E) efforts to increase voter registration among eligible public secondary school students attending schools served by rural eligible local educational agencies;
``(F) activities designed to promote community service and volunteerism among students, parents, teachers, and the community;
``(G) civic education, law-related education, and other programs designed to enhance responsible citizenship and understanding of the political process; and
``(H) encouraging a positive role for rural public schools in local rural entrepreneurship and the identification of rural community economic development opportunities;
``(9) recruit and retain qualified teachers, such as--
``(A) school-based management projects and activities;
``(B) programs designed to increase the status of the teaching profession;
``(C) alternative routes to certification for qualified individuals from business, the military, and other fields;
``(D) efforts to recruit and retain teachers in critical shortage areas, including early childhood teachers, mathematics and science teachers, foreign language teachers, and special education and bilingual teachers;
``(E) upgrading the skills of existing classroom teachers through the use of year-round, systematic, comprehensive inservice training programs;
``(F) upgrading the skills of teacher aides and paraprofessionals to assist such individuals in becoming certified teachers;
``(G) efforts specifically designed to increase the number of minority teachers in rural public schools;
``(H) programs designed to encourage parents and students to enter the teaching profession;
``(I) incentives for teachers to work in rural public schools;
``(J) collaborative activities with colleges and universities to revise and upgrade teacher training programs to meet the needs of rural public school students; and
``(K) training activities for the purpose of incorporating distance learning technologies; or
``(10) decrease the use of drugs and alcohol among rural public school students, and to enhance the physical and emotional health of such students, such as--
``(A) activities designed to improve the self-esteem and self-worth of rural students;
``(B) the provision of health care services and other social services and the coordination of such services with other health care providers;
``(C) programs designed to improve safety and discipline and reduce in-school violence and vandalism;
``(D) activities that begin in the early grades and are designed to prevent drug and alcohol abuse and smoking among students;
``(E) collaborative activities with other agencies, businesses, and community groups;
``(F) efforts to enhance health education and nutrition education; and
``(G) alternative public schools, and schools-within-schools programs, including bilingual, migrant, and special education programs for students with special needs.
``(b) Applications.--Each eligible entity desiring a grant under section 10973 shall submit an application to the Secretary at such time, in such manner, and accompanied by such information as the Secretary may reasonably require. Each grant awarded under section 10973 shall be of sufficient size and scope to achieve significant rural school improvement.