FR Doc 06-3928
[Federal Register: April 26, 2006 (Volume 71, Number 80)]
[Notices]               
[Page 24656-24663]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]
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DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION

 
Office of Elementary and Secondary Education; Overview 
Information; Smaller Learning Communities Program; Notice Inviting 
Applications for New Awards Using Fiscal Year (FY) 2005 Funds

Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) Number: 84.215L.
    Dates:
    Applications Available: April 26, 2006.
    Deadline for Notice of Intent to Apply: May 26, 2006.
    Deadline for Transmittal of Applications: June 26, 2006.
    Deadline for Intergovernmental Review: August 24, 2006.
    Eligible Applicants: Local educational agencies (LEAs), including 
educational service agencies and schools funded by the Bureau of Indian 
Affairs (BIA), applying on behalf of large public high schools, are 
eligible to apply for a grant.
    Additional eligibility requirements are listed elsewhere in this 
notice under section III. Eligibility Information.
    Estimated Available Funds: $86,954,000. The Department assumes that 
funds will be sufficient to provide the first 3 years of funding (36 
months) for each grantee from funds available for this compeition. 
Funding to cover the remaining 24 months will be contingent on the 
availability of funds and each grantee's substantial progress toward 
accomplishing the goals and objectives of the project as described in 
its approved application. Contingent upon the availability of funds and 
quality of applications, we may make additional awards in a subsequent 
fiscal year, using FY 2006 funds, based on the list of unfunded 
applicants from this competition. Additional information regarding 
awards and budgets is provided elsewhere in this notice under section 
II. Award Information.
    Estimated Range of Awards: See section II. Award Information, 
elsewhere in this notice.
    Estimated Size of Award: See section II. Award Information, 
elsewhere in this notice.
    Maximum Award: See section II. Award Information, elsewhere in this 
notice.
    Estimated Number of Awards: 72.


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

    Project Period: Up to 60 months.

Full Text of Announcement

I. Funding Opportunity Description

    Purpose of Program: Authorized under title V, part D, subpart 4, 
section

[[Page 24657]]

5441 of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965, as amended 
(ESEA), the purpose of the Smaller Learning Communities (SLC) program 
is to promote academic achievement through the creation or expansion of 
small, safe, and successful learning environments in large public high 
schools to help ensure that all students graduate with the knowledge 
and skills necessary to make successful transitions to college and 
careers.
    Priority: This priority is from the notice of final priority, 
requirements, definitions, and selection criteria (NFP) for this 
program, published in the Federal Register on April 28, 2005 (70 FR 
22233).
    Absolute Priority: For this competition and any subsequent year in 
which we make awards based on the list of unfunded applicants from this 
competition, this priority is an absolute priority. Under 34 CFR 
75.105(c)(3) we consider only applications that meet this priority.
    This priority is:
    Helping All Students to Succeed in Rigorous Academic Courses.
    This priority supports projects to create or expand SLCs that will 
implement a coherent set of strategies and interventions that are 
designed to ensure that all students who enter high school with 
reading/language arts and mathematics skills that are significantly 
below grade level ``catch up'' quickly so that, by no later than the 
end of the 10th grade, they have acquired the reading/language arts and 
mathematics skills they need to participate successfully in rigorous 
academic courses that will equip them with the knowledge and skills 
necessary to transition successfully to postsecondary education, 
apprenticeships, or advanced training.
    These accelerated learning strategies and interventions must--
    (1) Be grounded in the findings of scientifically based and other 
rigorous research;
    (2) Include the use of age-appropriate instructional materials and 
teaching and learning strategies;
    (3) Provide additional instruction and academic support during the 
regular school day, which may be supplemented by instruction that is 
provided before or after school, on weekends, and at other times when 
school is not in session; and
    (4) Provide sustained professional development and ongoing support 
for teachers and other personnel who are responsible for delivering 
instruction.

Application Requirements

    In the NFP, published in the Federal Register on April 28, 2005 (70 
FR 22233), we established application requirements in the following 
areas for competitions conducted under this program: Eligibility; 
School Report Cards; Types of Grants; Consortium Applications and 
Educational Service Agencies; Student Placement; Including All 
Students; Budget Information for Determination of Award; Performance 
Indicators; Evaluation; High-Risk Status and Other Enforcement 
Mechanisms; Required Meetings Sponsored by the Department; and Previous 
Grantees.
    These requirements are in addition to the content that all SLC 
grant applicants must include in their applications as required by the 
program statute in title V, part D, subpart 4, section 5441(b) of the 
ESEA.
    In this competition, we will not be using the Types of Grants 
requirement. We have incorporated the terms of the remaining 
requirements under appropriate sections of this notice (e.g., the 
Eligibility requirement is listed in section III. Eligibility 
Information, elsewhere in this notice).

Definitions

    In addition to the definitions in the authorizing statute and 34 
CFR 77.1, the following definitions also apply to this program:
    BIA School means a school operated or supported by the Bureau of 
Indian Affairs.
    Large High School means a public school that includes grades 11 and 
12 and has an enrollment of 1,000 or more students in grades 9 and 
above.
    Smaller Learning Community (SLC) means an environment in which a 
core group of teachers and other adults within the school knows the 
needs, interests, and aspirations of each student well, closely 
monitors each student's progress, and provides the academic and other 
support each student needs to succeed.

    Program Authority: 20 U.S.C. 7249.

    Applicable Regulations: (a) The Education Department General 
Administrative Regulations (EDGAR) in 34 CFR parts 75, 77, 79, 80, 81, 
82, 84, 85, 97, 98, and 99. (b) The NFP published in the Federal 
Register on April 28, 2005 (70 FR 22233).


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

II. Award Information

    Type of Award: Discretionary grants.
    Estimated Available Funds: $86,954,000. The Department assumes that 
funds will be sufficient to provide the first 3 years of funding (36 
months) for each grantee from funds available for this compeition. 
Funding to cover the remaining 24 months will be contingent on the 
availability of funds and each grantee's substantial progress toward 
accomplishing the goals and objectives of the project as described in 
its approved application. Contingent upon the availability of funds and 
quality of applications, we may make additional awards in a subsequent 
year, using FY 2006 funds, based on the list of unfunded applicants 
from this competition.
    Estimated Range of Awards: $650,000 to $11,750,000. The following 
chart provides the ranges of awards per high school size for 60-month 
SLC grants:

                         SLC Grant Award Ranges
------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                      Award ranges per
                Student enrollment                         school
------------------------------------------------------------------------
1,000-2,000 Students..............................     $650,000-$800,000
2,001-3,000 Students..............................       650,000-925,000
3,001-4,000 Students..............................     650,000-1,050,000
4,001 and Up......................................     650,000-1,175,000
------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Estimated Size of Award: LEAs may receive, on behalf of a single 
school, up to $1,175,000, depending upon the size of the school. This 
award is for the full 60-month project period. LEAs applying on behalf 
of a group of eligible schools could receive up to $11,750,000 per 
grant. To ensure that sufficient funds are available to support SLC 
activities, LEAs may not include more than 10 schools in a single 
application for a grant. The actual size of awards will be based on a 
number of factors. These factors include the scope, quality, and 
comprehensiveness of the proposed project and the range of awards 
indicated in the application.
    Maximum Award: Applications that request more funds than the 
maximum amounts specified (in the chart) for any school or for the 
total grant will not be read as part of the regular application 
process. However, if, after the Secretary selects applications to be 
funded, it appears that additional funds remain available, the 
Secretary may choose to read those additional applications that 
requested funds exceeding the maximum amounts specified. If the 
Secretary chooses to fund any of those additional applications, 
applicants will be required to work with the Department to revise their 
proposed budgets to fit within the appropriate funding range.
    Estimated Number of Awards: 72.


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



[[Page 24658]]


    Project Period: Up to 60 months.

III. Eligibility Information

    1. Eligible Applicants: Local educational agencies (LEAs), 
including educational service agencies and schools funded by the Bureau 
of Indian Affairs (BIA), applying on behalf of large public high 
schools, are eligible to apply for a grant.
    An LEA that was awarded an implementation grant on behalf of a 
school under the original SLC program competition held in 2000 (Cohort 
1), under the second competition held in 2002 (Cohort 2), or under the 
third competition held in 2003 (Cohort 3) may apply on behalf of the 
school for a second SLC grant under the terms contained in the NFP. 
LEAs would not be able to apply for funding on behalf of schools that 
received an SLC implementation grant under the competitions held in 
2004 (Cohort 4) and 2005 (Cohort 5).
    To be considered for funding, LEAs must identify in their 
applications the name or names of the eligible large high school or 
schools and the number of students enrolled in each school. A large 
high school is defined as one having grades 11 and 12, with 1,000 or 
more students enrolled in grades 9 and above. Enrollment figures must 
be based upon data from the current school year or data from the most 
recently completed school year. We will not accept applications from 
LEAs applying on behalf of schools that are being constructed and do 
not have an active student enrollment at the time of application. LEAs 
may apply on behalf of no more than 10 schools.
    In an effort to encourage systemic, district-level reform efforts, 
we permit an individual LEA to submit only one grant application in a 
competition, specifying in each application which high schools the LEA 
intends to fund.
    In addition, we require that an LEA applying for a grant under this 
competition apply only on behalf of a high school or high schools for 
which it has governing authority, unless the LEA is an educational 
service agency that includes in its application evidence that the 
entity that has governing authority over the eligible high school 
supports the application. An LEA, however, may form a consortium with 
another LEA and submit a joint application for funds. The consortium 
must follow the procedures for group applications described in 34 CFR 
75.127 through 75.129 in EDGAR.
    An LEA is eligible for only one grant whether the LEA applies 
independently or as part of a consortium.
    2. Cost Sharing or Matching: This competition does not involve cost 
sharing or matching.

IV. Application and Submission Information

    1. Address To Request Application Package: You may obtain an 
application package via the Internet or from the Education Publications 
Center (ED Pubs). To obtain a copy via the Internet use the following 
addresses: http://www.grants.gov or http://www.ed.gov/programs/slcp/applicant.html.
 To obtain a copy from ED Pubs, write or call the 
 the 
(toll free): 1-877-433-7827. Fax: (301) 470-1244. If you use a 
telecommunications device for the deaf (TDD), you may call (toll free): 
1-877-576-7734.
    You may also contact ED Pubs at its Web site: http://www.ed.gov/pubs/edpubs.html
 or you may contact ED Pubs at its e-mail address: edpubs@inet.ed.gov.

    If you request an application from ED Pubs, be sure to identify 
this competition as follows: CFDA number 84.215L.
    Individuals with disabilities may obtain a copy of the application 
package in an alternative format (e.g., Braille, large print, 
audiotape, or computer diskette) by contacting Deborah Williams, U.S. 
Department of Education, 400 Maryland Avenue, SW., room 3W241, 
Washington, DC 20202-6200. Telephone: (202) 205-3783 or by e-mail: 
deborah.williams@ed.gov.

    2. Content and Form of Application Submission: All SLC grant 
applicants must include in their applications the information required 
by the program statute in title V, part D, subpart 4, section 5441(b) 
of the ESEA. Applicants also must meet the following requirements:
    (a) School Report Cards. We require that LEAs provide, for each 
school included in the application, the most recent ``report card'' 
produced by the State or the LEA to inform the public about the 
characteristics of the school and its students, including information 
about student academic achievement and other student outcomes. These 
``report cards'' must include, at a minimum, the following information 
that LEAs are required to report for each school under section 
1111(h)(2)(B)(ii) of the ESEA: (1) Whether the school has been 
identified for school improvement; and (2) information that shows how 
the academic assessments and other indicators of adequate yearly 
progress compare to those indicators for students in the LEA as a whole 
and also shows the performance of the school's students on statewide 
assessments.
    (b) Student Placement. We require applicants for SLC grants to 
include a description of how students will be selected or placed in an 
SLC and an assurance that students will not be placed according to 
ability or any other measure, but will be placed at random or by 
student/parent choice and not pursuant to testing or other judgments.
    (c) Including All Students. We require applicants for grants to 
create or expand an SLC project that will include every student within 
the school by no later than the end of the fifth school year of 
implementation. Elsewhere in this notice, we define an SLC as an 
environment in which a group of teachers and other adults within the 
school knows the needs, interests, and aspirations of each student 
well, closely monitors each student's progress, and provides the 
academic and other support each student needs to succeed.
    (d) Performance Indicators. We require applicants to identify in 
their application specific performance indicators and annual 
performance objectives for each of these indicators. Specifically, we 
require applicants to use the following performance indicators to 
measure the progress of each school:
    (1) The percentage of students who score at the proficient and 
advanced levels on the reading/language arts and mathematics 
assessments used by the State to determine whether a school has made 
adequate yearly progress under part A of title I of the ESEA, as well 
as these percentages disaggregated by subject matter and the following 
subgroups:
    (A) Major racial and ethnic groups.
    (B) Students with disabilities.
    (C) Students with limited English proficiency.
    (D) Economically disadvantaged students.
    (2) The school's graduation rate, as defined in the State's 
approved accountability plan for part A of title I of the ESEA.
    (3) The percentage of graduates who enroll in postsecondary 
education, apprenticeships, or advanced training for the semester 
following graduation.
    (4) The percentage of graduates who are employed by the end of the 
first quarter after they graduate (e.g., for students who graduate in 
May or June, this would be September 30).
    (5) Other appropriate indicators the LEA may choose to identify in 
its application, such as rates of average daily attendance and year-to-
year retention; achievement and gains in English proficiency of limited 
English

[[Page 24659]]

proficient students; the incidence of school violence, drug and alcohol 
use, and disciplinary actions; or the percentage of students completing 
advanced placement courses and the rate of passing advanced placement 
tests (such as Advanced Placement and International Baccalaureate) and 
courses for college credit.
    Applicants are required to include in their applications baseline 
data for each of these indicators and identify performance objectives 
for each year of the project period. We further require recipients of 
grants to report annually on the extent to which each school achieves 
its performance objectives for each indicator during the preceding 
school year. We require grantees to report comparable data, if 
available, for the preceding three school years so that trends in 
performance will be more apparent.
    Grantees must submit this additional data using the Department's 
SLC electronic reporting Web site within three months after awards are 
made.
    (e) Evaluation. We require each applicant to provide assurances 
that it will support an evaluation of the project that provides 
information to the project director and school personnel, and that will 
be useful in gauging the project's progress and in identifying areas 
for improvement. Each evaluation must include an annual report for each 
of the first four years of the project period and a final report that 
would be completed at the end of the fifth year of implementation and 
that will include information on implementation during the fifth year 
as well as information on the implementation of the project across the 
entire project period. We require grantees to submit each of these 
reports to the Department.
    In addition, we require that the evaluation be conducted by an 
independent third party, selected by the applicant, whose role in the 
project is limited to conducting the evaluation.
    (f) Required Meetings Sponsored by the Department. Applicants must 
set aside adequate funds within their proposed budget to send their 
project director to a two-day project directors' meeting in Washington, 
DC, and to send a team of five key staff members, including their 
external evaluator, to attend a two-and-a-half-day Regional Institute. 
The Department will host both meetings. We anticipate that the meetings 
will be held in the first year of the grant period.
    (g) Additional Requirements. Additional requirements concerning the 
content of an application for this program, together with the forms you 
must submit, also are in the application package for this competition.
    Page limit: The application narrative is where you, the applicant, 
address the selection criteria that reviewers use to evaluate your 
application. We encourage you to limit the narrative to the equivalent 
of no more than 25 pages and suggest that you 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, references, and captions, as well as all text in 
charts, tables, figures, and graphs.
     Use a font that is either 12 point or larger or no smaller 
than 10 pitch (characters per inch).
    The suggested page limit does not apply to the forms, budget 
section, budget justification, assurances and certifications, one-page 
abstract, endnotes, school report cards, or resumes. However, you must 
include all of the application narrative in the narrative section.
    3. Submission Dates and Times:
    Applications Available: April 26, 2006.
    Deadline for Notice of Intent to Apply: May 26, 2006.
    Deadline for Transmittal of Applications: June 26, 2006.
    Applications for grants under this competition must be submitted 
electronically using the Grants.gov Apply site (Grants.gov). For 
information (including dates and times) about how to submit your 
application electronically or by mail or hand delivery if you qualify 
for an exception to the electronic submission requirement, please refer 
to section IV.6. Other Submission Requirements in this notice.
    We do not consider an application that does not comply with the 
deadline requirements.
    Deadline for Intergovernmental Review: August 24, 2006.
    4. Intergovernmental Review: This competition is subject to 
Executive Order 12372 and the regulations in 34 CFR part 79. 
Information about Intergovernmental Review of Federal Programs under 
Executive Order 12372 is in the application package for this 
competition.
    5. Funding Restrictions: We reference regulations outlining funding 
restrictions in the Applicable Regulations section of this notice.
    6. Other Submission Requirements: Applications for grants under 
this competition must be submitted electronically unless you qualify 
for an exception to this requirement in accordance with the 
instructions in this section.
    a. Electronic Submission of Applications.
    Applications for grants under the Smaller Learning Communities 
Program-CFDA Number 84.215L must be submitted electronically using the 
Grants.gov Apply site at: http://www.Grants.gov. 
Through this site, you 

will be able to download a copy of the application package, complete it 
offline, and then upload and submit your application. You may not e-
mail an electronic copy of a grant application to us.
    We will reject your application if you submit it in paper format 
unless, as described elsewhere in this section, you qualify for one of 
the exceptions to the electronic submission requirements and submit, no 
later than two weeks before the application deadline date, a written 
statement to the Department that you qualify for one of these 
exceptions. Further information regarding calculation of the date that 
is two weeks before the application deadline date is provided later in 
this section under Exception to Electronic Submission Requirement.
    You may access the electronic grant application for the Smaller 
Learning Communities Program at: http://www.Grants.gov. 
You must search 

for the downloadable application package for this program by the CFDA 
number. Do not include the CFDA number s alpha suffix in your search.
    Please note the following:
     When you enter the Grants.gov site, you will find 
information about submitting an application electronically through the 
site, as well as the hours of operation.
     Applications received by Grants.gov are time and date 
stamped. Your application must be fully uploaded and submitted, and 
must be date/time stamped by the Grants.gov system no later than 4:30 
p.m., Washington, DC time, on the application deadline date. Except as 
otherwise noted in this section, we will not consider your application 
if it is date/time stamped by the Grants.gov system later than 4:30 
p.m., Washington, DC time, on the application deadline date. When we 
retrieve your application from Grants.gov, we will notify you if we are 
rejecting your application because it was date/time stamped by the 
Grants.gov system after 4:30 p.m., Washington, DC time, on the 
application deadline date.

[[Page 24660]]

     The amount of time it can take to upload an application 
will vary depending on a variety of factors including the size of the 
application and the speed of your Internet connection. Therefore, we 
strongly recommend that you do not wait until the application deadline 
date to begin the submission process through Grants.gov.
     You should review and follow the Education Submission 
Procedures for submitting an application through Grants.gov that are 
included in the application package for this competition to ensure that 
you submit your application in a timely manner to the Grants.gov 
system. You can also find the Education submission Procedures 
pertaining to Grants.gov at 
http://e-Grants.ed.gov/help/GrantsgovSubmissionProcedures.pdf.

     To submit your application via Grants.gov, you must 
complete all of the steps in the Grants.gov registration process (see 
http://www.Grants.gov/GetStarted). 
These steps include (1) registering 

your organization, (2) registering yourself as an Authorized 
Organization Representative (AOR), and (3) getting authorized as an AOR 
by your organization. Details on these steps are outlined in the 
Grants.gov 3-Step Registration Guide (see http://www.grants.gov/assets/GrantsgovCoBrandBrochure8X11.pdf). 
You also must provide on your application the same D-U-N-S Number used with this registration. 
Please note that the registration process may take five or more business days 
to complete, and you must have completed all registration steps to 
allow you to submit an application successfully via Grants.gov.
     You will not receive additional point value because you 
submit your application in electronic format, nor will we penalize you 
if you qualify for an exception to the electronic submission 
requirement, as described elsewhere in this section, and submit your 
application in paper format.
     You must submit all documents electronically, including 
all information typically included on the Application for Federal 
Education Assistance (ED 424), Budget Information--Non-Construction 
Programs (ED 524), and all necessary assurances and certifications. You 
must attach any narrative sections of your application as files in a 
.DOC (document), .RTF (rich text), or .PDF (Portable Document) format. 
If you upload a file type other than the three file types specified 
above or submit a password protected file, we will not review that 
material.
     Your electronic application must comply with any page-
limit requirements described in this notice.
     After you electronically submit your application, you will 
receive an automatic acknowledgement from Grants.gov that contains a 
Grants.gov tracking number. The Department will retrieve your 
application from Grants.gov and send you a second confirmation by e-
mail that will include a PR/Award number (an ED-specified identifying 
number unique to your application).
     We may request that you provide us original signatures on 
forms at a later date.
    Application Deadline Date Extension in Case of Technical Issues 
with the Grants.gov System: If you are prevented from electronically 
submitting your application on the application deadline date because of 
technical problems with the Grants.gov system, we will grant you an 
extension until 4:30 p.m., Washington, DC time, the following business 
day to enable you to transmit your application electronically, or by 
hand delivery. You also may mail your application by following the 
mailing instructions as described elsewhere in this notice. If you 
submit an application after 4:30 p.m., Washington, DC time, on the 
deadline date, please contact the person listed elsewhere in this 
notice under For Further Information Contact, and provide an 
explanation of the technical problem you experienced with Grants.gov, 
along with the Grants.gov Support Desk Case Number (if available). We 
will accept your application if we can confirm that a technical problem 
occurred with the Grants.gov system and that that problem affected your 
ability to submit your application by 4:30 p.m., Washington, DC time, 
on the application deadline date. The Department will contact you after 
a determination is made on whether your application will be accepted.


    Note: Extensions referred to in this section apply only to the 
unavailability of or technical problems with the Grants.gov system. 
We will not grant you an extension if you failed to fully register 
to submit your application to Grants.gov before the deadline date 
and time or if the technical problem you experienced is unrelated to 
the Grants.gov system.


    Exception to Electronic Submission Requirement: You qualify for an 
exception to the electronic submission requirement, and may submit your 
application in paper format, if you are unable to submit an application 
through the Grants.gov system because--
     You do not have access to the Internet; or
     You do not have the capacity to upload large documents to 
the Grants.gov system; and
     No later than two weeks before the application deadline 
date (14 calendar days or, if the fourteenth calendar day before the 
application deadline date falls on a Federal holiday, the next business 
day following the Federal holiday), you mail or fax a written statement 
to the Department, explaining which of the two grounds for an exception 
prevent you from using the Internet to submit your application. If you 
mail your written statement to the Department, it must be postmarked no 
later than two weeks before the application deadline date. If you fax 
your written statement to the Department, we must receive the faxed 
statement no later than two weeks before the application deadline date.
    Address and mail or fax your statement to: Deborah Williams, U.S. 
Department of Education, 400 Maryland Avenue, SW., room 3W241, 
Washington, DC 20202-6200. Fax: (202) 260-8969.
    Your paper application must be submitted in accordance with the 
mail or hand delivery instructions described in this notice.
    b. Submission of Paper Applications by Mail.
    If you qualify for an exception to the electronic submission 
requirement, you may mail (through the U.S. Postal Service or a 
commercial carrier), your application to the Department. You must mail 
the original and two copies of your application, on or before the 
application deadline date, to the Department at the applicable 
following address:
    By mail through the U.S. Postal Service: U.S. Department of 
Education, Application Control Center, Attention: (CFDA Number 
84.215L), 400 Maryland Avenue, SW., Washington, DC 20202-4260,
     or
    By mail through a commercial carrier: U.S. Department of Education, 
Application Control Cente--Stop 4260, Attention: (CFDA Number 84.215L), 
7100 Old Landover Road, Landover, MD 20785-1506.
    Regardless of which address you use, you must show proof of mailing 
consisting of one of the following:
    (1) A legibly dated U.S. Postal Service postmark,
    (2) A legible mail receipt with the date of mailing stamped by the 
U.S. Postal Service,
    (3) A dated shipping label, invoice, or receipt from a commercial 
carrier, or

[[Page 24661]]

    (4) Any other proof of mailing acceptable to the Secretary of the 
U.S. Department of Education.
    If you mail your application through the U.S. Postal Service, we do 
not accept either of the following as proof of mailing:
    (1) A private metered postmark, or
    (2) A mail receipt that is not dated by the U.S. Postal Service.
    If your application is postmarked after the application deadline 
date, we will not consider your application.


    Note: The U.S. Postal Service does not uniformly provide a dated 
postmark. Before relying on this method, you should check with your 
local post office.


    c. Submission of Paper Applications by Hand Delivery.
    If you qualify for an exception to the electronic submission 
requirement, you (or a courier service) may deliver your paper 
application to the Department by hand. You must deliver the original 
and two copies of your application by hand, on or before the 
application deadline date, to the Department at the following address: 
U.S. Department of Education, Application Control Center, Attention: 
(CFDA Number 84.215L), 550 12th Street SW., Room 7041, Potomac Center 
Plaza, Washington, DC 20202-4260.

The Application Control Center accepts hand deliveries daily between 8 
a.m. and 4:30 p.m., Washington, DC time, except Saturdays, Sundays, and 
Federal holidays.
    Note for Mail or Hand Delivery of Paper Applications: If you mail 
or hand deliver your application to the Department:
    (1) You must indicate on the envelope and--if not provided by the 
Department--in Item 4 of the ED 424 the CFDA number--and suffix letter, 
if any--of the competition under which you are submitting your 
application.
    (2) The Application Control Center will mail a grant application 
receipt acknowledgment to you. If you do not receive the grant 
application receipt acknowledgment within 15 business days from the 
application deadline date, you should call the U.S. Department of 
Education Application Control Center at (202) 245-6288.

V. Application Review Information

    Selection Criteria: The following selection criteria will be used 
to evaluate applications for new grants under this program. These 
selection criteria are from the NFP, published in the Federal Register 
on April 28, 2005 (70 FR 22233).


    Note: The maximum score for a grant under this program is 100 
points. The points or weights assigned to each criterion and sub-
criterion are indicated in parentheses.

Need for the Project (10 Points)

    In determining the need for the proposed project, we consider the 
extent to which the applicant will--
    Assist schools that have the greatest need for assistance, as 
indicated by, relative to other high schools within the State, one or 
more of the factors below:
    (A) Student performance on the academic assessments in reading/
language arts and mathematics administered by the State under part A, 
title I of the ESEA, including gaps in the performance of all students 
and that of student subgroups, such as economically disadvantaged 
students, students from major racial and ethnic groups, students with 
disabilities, or students with limited English proficiency.
    (B) The school's dropout rate and gaps in the graduation rate 
between all students and student subgroups.
    (C) Disciplinary actions.
    (D) The percentage of graduates who enroll in postsecondary 
education, apprenticeships, or advanced training in the semester 
following graduation, and gaps between all students and student 
subgroups.

Foundation for Implementation (20 Points)

    In determining the quality of the implementation plan for the 
proposed project, we consider the extent to which--
    (1) (5 points) Teachers and administrators within each school 
support the proposed project and have been and will continue to be 
involved in its planning and development, including, particularly, 
those teachers who will be directly affected by the proposed project;
    (2) (5 points) Parents, students, and other community stakeholders 
support the proposed project and have been and will continue to be 
involved in its planning and development;
    (3) (5 points) The proposed project is consistent with, and will 
advance, State and local initiatives to increase student achievement 
and narrow gaps in achievement between all students and student 
subgroups; and
    (4) (5 points) The applicant demonstrates that it has carried out 
sufficient planning and preparatory activities to enable it to begin to 
implement the proposed project at the beginning of the school year 
immediately following receipt of an award.

Quality of the Project Design (30 Points)

    In determining the quality of the project design for the SLC 
project, we consider the extent to which--
    (1) (5 points) The applicant will implement or expand strategies, 
new organizational structures, or other changes in practice that are 
likely to create an environment in which a core group of teachers and 
other adults within the school knows the needs, interests, and 
aspirations of each student well, closely monitors each student's 
progress, and provides the academic and other support each student 
needs to succeed;
    (2) (5 points) The applicant proposes research-based strategies 
that are likely to improve overall student achievement and other 
outcomes (including graduation rates and enrollment in postsecondary 
education), narrow any gaps in achievement between all students and 
student subgroups, and address the particular needs identified by the 
school under the paragraph titled Need for the Project, such as--
    (A) More rigorous academic curriculum for all students and the 
provision of academic support to struggling students who need 
assistance to master more challenging academic content;
    (B) More intensive and individualized educational counseling and 
career and college guidance, provided through mentoring, teacher 
advisories, adult advocates, or other means;
    (C) Strategies designed to increase average daily attendance, 
increase the percentage of students who transition from the 9th to 10th 
grade, and improve the graduation rate; and
    (D) Expanding opportunities for students to participate in advanced 
placement courses and other academic and technical courses that offer 
both high school and postsecondary credit;
    (3) (5 points) The applicant will implement accelerated learning 
strategies and interventions that will assist students who enter the 
school with reading/language or mathematics skills that are 
significantly below grade level and that--
    (A) Are designed to equip participating students with grade-level 
reading/language arts and mathematics skills by no later than the end 
of the 10th grade;
    (B) Are grounded in scientifically based research;
    (C) Include the use of age-appropriate instructional materials and 
teaching and learning strategies;
    (D) Provide additional instructional and academic support during 
the regular school day, which may be

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supplemented by instruction that is provided before or after school, on 
weekends, and at other times when school is not in session;
    (E) Will be delivered with sufficient intensity to improve the 
reading/language arts or math skills, as appropriate, of participating 
students; and
    (F) Include sustained professional development and ongoing support 
for teachers and other personnel who are responsible for delivering 
instruction;
    (4) (5 points) The applicant will provide high-quality professional 
development throughout the project period that advances the 
understanding of teachers, administrators, and other school staff of 
effective, research-based instructional strategies for improving the 
academic achievement of students, including, particularly, students 
with academic skills that are significantly below grade level, and 
provide the knowledge and skills those staff need to participate 
effectively in the development, expansion, or implementation of an SLC;
    (5) (5 points) The proposed project fits into a comprehensive 
district high school improvement strategy to increase the academic 
achievement of all district high school students, reduce gaps between 
the achievement of all students and student subgroups, and prepare 
students to enter postsecondary education or the workforce; and
    (6) (5 points) The proposed project is part of a cohesive plan that 
uses funds provided under the ESEA, the Carl D. Perkins Vocational and 
Technical Education Act, or other Federal programs, as well as local, 
State, and private funds sufficient to ensure continuation of efforts 
after Federal support ends.

Quality of the Management Plan (20 Points)

    In determining the quality of the management plan for the proposed 
project, we consider the following factors:
    (1) (5 points) The adequacy of the proposed management plan to 
achieve the objectives of the proposed project on time and within 
budget, including clearly defined responsibilities and detailed 
timelines and milestones for accomplishing project tasks.
    (2) (5 points) The extent to which time commitments of the project 
director and other key personnel are appropriate and adequate to 
implement the SLC project effectively.
    (3) (5 points) The qualifications, including relevant training and 
experience, of the project director and other key personnel.
    (4) (5 points) The adequacy of resources, including the extent to 
which the budget is adequate and costs are directly related to the 
objectives and SLC activities.

Quality of the SLC Project Evaluation (20 Points)

    In determining the quality of the proposed project evaluation 
conducted by an independent, third-party evaluator, we consider the 
following factors:
    (1) (5 points) The extent to which the methods of evaluation are 
thorough, feasible, and appropriate to the goals, objectives, and 
outcomes of the proposed SLC project.
    (2) (5 points) The extent to which the evaluation will collect and 
report accurate qualitative and quantitative data that will be useful 
in assessing the success and progress of implementation, including, at 
a minimum--
    (A) Measures of student academic achievement that provide data for 
the performance indicators identified in the application, including 
results that are disaggregated for economically disadvantaged students, 
students from major racial and ethnic groups, students with 
disabilities, students with limited English proficiency, and other 
subgroups identified by the applicant; and
    (B) Other measures identified by the applicant in the application 
as performance indicators.
    (3) (5 points) The extent to which the methods of evaluation will 
provide timely and regular feedback to the LEA and the school on the 
success and progress of implementation and identify areas for needed 
improvement.
    (4) (5 points) The qualifications and relevant training and 
experience of the independent evaluator.

VI. Award Administration Information

    1. Award Notices: If your application is successful, we notify your 
U.S. Representative and U.S. Senators and send you a Grant Award 
Notification (GAN). We may also notify you informally.
    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.


    Note: Requirements listed in the NFP are material requirements. 
Failure to comply with any requirement or with any elements of the 
grantee's application would subject the grantee to administrative 
action including, but not limited to, designation as a ``high-risk'' 
grantee, the imposition of special conditions, or termination of the 
grant. Circumstances that might cause the Department to take this 
action include, but are not limited to--the grantee showing a 
decline in student achievement after two years of implementation of 
the grant; the grantee's failure to make substantial progress in 
completing the milestones outlined in the management plan included 
in the application; and the grantee's expenditure of funds in a 
manner that is inconsistent with the budget as submitted in the 
application.


    3. Reporting: At the end of your project period, you must submit a 
final performance report, including financial information, as directed 
by the Secretary. If you receive a multi-year award, you must submit an 
annual performance report that provides the most current performance 
and financial expenditure information as specified by the Secretary in 
34 CFR 75.118. Additional reporting requirements are described 
elsewhere in this notice under section IV. Application and Submission 
Information, 2. Content and Form of Application Submission.
    4. Performance Measures: The application requirements and other 
information related to performance indicators and objectives are 
described elsewhere in this notice under section IV. Application and 
Submission Information, 2. Content and Form of Application Submission.

VII. Agency Contact

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Deborah Williams, U.S. Department of 
Education, 400 Maryland Avenue, SW., room 3W241, Washington, DC 20202-
6200. Telephone: (202) 205-3783 or by e-mail: 
deborah.williams@ed.gov
    If you use a telecommunications device for the deaf (TDD), you may 
call the Federal Relay Service (FRS) at 1-800-877-8339.
    Individuals with disabilities may obtain this document in an 
alternative format (e.g., Braille, large print, audiotape, or computer 
diskette) on request to the program contact person listed in this 
section.

VIII. Other Information

    Electronic Access to This Document: You may view this document, as 
well as all other documents of this Department published in the Federal 
Register, in

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text or Adobe Portable Document Format (PDF) on the Internet at the 
following site: 
http://www.ed.gov/news/fedregister.

    To use PDF you must have Adobe Acrobat Reader, which is available 
free at this site. If you have questions about using PDF, call the U.S. 
Government Printing Office (GPO), toll free, at 1-888-293-6498; or in 
the Washington, DC, area at (202) 512-1530.


    Note: The official version of this document is the document 
published in the Federal Register. Free Internet access to the 
official edition of the Federal Register and the Code of Federal 
Regulations is available on GPO Access at: 
http://www.gpoaccess.gov/nara/index.html




    Dated: April 21, 2006.
Henry L. Johnson,
Assistant Secretary for Elementary and Secondary Education.
[FR Doc. 06-3928 Filed 4-25-06; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 4000-01-P