FR Doc E9-14258[Federal Register: June 17, 2009 (Volume 74, Number 115)]
[Notices]               
[Page 28675-28680]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]
[DOCID:fr17jn09-35]  

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DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION

 
Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services; Overview 
Information; Technical Assistance and Dissemination To Improve Services 
and Results for Children With Disabilities--State Technical Assistance 
Projects To Improve Services and Results for Children Who Are Deaf-
Blind; Notice Inviting Applications for New Awards for Fiscal Year (FY) 
2009

    Note: This notice inviting applications is open to qualified 
applicants to serve the following areas only: the District of 
Columbia; Puerto Rico; and the Virgin Islands.

Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) Number: 84.326C.

    Note: On March 25, 2008, we published a Notice Inviting 
Applications for New Awards for FY 2008 in the Federal Register (73 
FR 15744) inviting applications for CFDA Number 84.326C using the 
Technical Assistance and Dissemination To Improve Services and 
Results for Children With Disabilities--State Technical Assistance 
Projects To Improve Services and Results for Children Who Are Deaf-
Blind priority. We invited applications in that notice for projects 
in all 50 States, the District of Columbia, the Virgin Islands, and 
the outlying areas and the Freely Associated States (FAS) of the 
Pacific Basin. No applications were submitted to serve the District 
of Columbia or the Virgin Islands and the single application that 
was submitted to serve Puerto Rico proposed a budget that exceeded 
the amount allocated to that area and, therefore, the application 
was not eligible for review. Through this notice, we invite 
applications for another competition for State Technical Assistance 
Projects To Improve Services and Results for Children Who Are Deaf-
Blind to serve the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. 
Virgin Islands.

    Dates:
    Applications Available: June 17, 2009.
    Deadline for Transmittal of Applications: July 17, 2009.
    Deadline for Intergovernmental Review: September 15, 2009.

Full Text of Announcement

I. Funding Opportunity Description

    Purpose of Program: The purpose of the Technical Assistance and 
Dissemination To Improve Services and Results For Children With 
Disabilities program is to promote academic achievement and to improve 
results for children with disabilities by providing technical 
assistance (TA), supporting model demonstration projects, disseminating 
useful information, and implementing activities that are supported by 
scientifically based research.
    Priority: In accordance with 34 CFR 75.105(b)(2)(v), this priority 
is from allowable activities specified in the statute or otherwise 
authorized in the statute (see sections 663 and 681(d) of the 
Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, as amended (IDEA) (20 
U.S.C. 1400, et seq.).
    Absolute Priority: For FY 2009 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:

Technical Assistance and Dissemination To Improve Services and Results 
for Children With Disabilities--State Technical Assistance Projects To 
Improve Services and Results for Children Who Are Deaf-Blind

    Background:
    Children who are deaf-blind represent one of the lowest incidence 
and most diverse groups of learners receiving early intervention, 
special education, and related services (Muller, 2006). In addition to 
having combined hearing and vision loss, 90 percent of these children 
experience concomitant physical or intellectual disabilities and may 
experience complex medical and behavioral challenges (Killoran, 2007).
    Children who are deaf-blind are often isolated and disconnected 
from people and activities in their homes, schools, and communities 
both because they cannot access visual and auditory information and 
because they are not given the individualized supports necessary to 
access this information. Without individualized supports to access 
visual and auditory information (i.e., environmental information, such 
as who is present, what is being said, and what activities are 
occurring), children who are deaf-blind are at greater risk for not 
attaining age-appropriate milestones in communication and language, 
social skills, and activities of daily living, which in turn affects 
their educational outcomes. Consequently, students who are deaf-blind 
often exit school at age 22 without viable postsecondary education, 
employment, or independent living options (Killoran, 2007).
    Most State educational agencies (SEAs), Part C State lead agencies, 
and local educational agencies (LEAs) lack sufficient numbers of 
personnel with the specialized training, experience, and skills that 
are needed to provide appropriate early intervention, special 
education, and related services to children who are deaf-blind 
(Collins, 1992; Markowitz, 2001; McLetchie, 1992). The critical 
shortage of personnel to serve children who are deaf-blind can limit 
access to a free appropriate public education for these children.
    Since its inception, the Office of Special Education Programs 
(OSEP) has funded TA projects and personnel preparation programs to 
build State and local capacity to serve children who are deaf-blind and 
their families. As a result of those projects and programs, 
professionals, advocates, individuals who are deaf-blind, and parents 
have collaborated to make progress in identifying evidence-based 
intervention practices for children who are deaf-blind, developing 
high-quality training materials and resources, and developing networks 
across States to share information (Killorin, Davies, & McNulty, 2006). 
However, the National Deaf-Blind Child Count Registry data show that 
eighty-five percent of school-age children still continue to receive 
their services in separate settings. More work is needed to ensure that 
early intervention, special and regular education, and related services 
personnel have adequate skills to appropriately serve infants and 
toddlers in natural environments, which may include home and community 
settings, and school-age children in the least restrictive environment 
(Warner, 2007). Under this priority, the projects to be funded will 
create or strengthen collaborative partnerships among families, SEAs, 
State lead agencies, and LEAs to enhance services and improve outcomes 
for children who are deaf-blind. Projects will assist SEAs, State lead 
agencies, and LEAs in ensuring that children served under Part C of 
IDEA

[[Page 28676]]

who are deaf-blind receive services, to the maximum extent appropriate, 
in natural environments, and children served under Part B of IDEA who 
are deaf-blind have access to, and are involved and make progress in, 
the general education curriculum in the least restrictive environment.
    Priority:
    The purpose of this priority is to support the establishment and 
operation of State Technical Assistance Projects To Improve Services 
and Results for Children Who Are Deaf-Blind (projects). Grants are 
available to support projects in the District of Columbia; Puerto Rico; 
and the Virgin Islands. Funds awarded under this priority may not be 
used to provide direct early intervention services under Part C of 
IDEA, or direct special education and related services under Part B of 
IDEA.
    To be considered for funding under this absolute priority, 
applicants must meet the application requirements contained in this 
priority. All projects funded under this absolute priority also must 
meet the programmatic and administrative requirements specified in the 
priority.
    Application Requirements. An applicant must include in its 
application--
    (a) A logic model that depicts, at a minimum, the goals, 
activities, outputs, and outcomes of the proposed project. A logic 
model communicates how a project will achieve its outcomes and provides 
a framework for the annual performance reports and the final report.

    Note: For more information on logic models, the following Web 
site lists multiple online resources: 
http://www.cdc.gov/eval/resources.htm.

    (b) A plan to implement the activities described in the Project 
Activities section of this priority;
    (c) A plan, linked to the proposed project's logic model, for a 
formative evaluation of the proposed project's activities. The plan 
must describe how the formative evaluation will use clear performance 
objectives to ensure continuous improvement in the operation of the 
proposed project, including objective measures of progress in 
implementing the project and ensuring the quality of products and 
services; and
    (d) A budget for attendance at the following:
    (1) A four-day Project Directors' Conference in Washington, DC, 
during each year of the project period.
    (2) A three-day National Consortium on Deaf-Blindness Annual 
Topical Conference during each year of the project period.
    Project Activities. To meet the requirements of this priority, the 
project, at a minimum, must conduct the following activities:
    Technical Assistance and Dissemination Activities.
    (a) Facilitate collaborative partnerships between family members of 
children who are deaf-blind; early intervention, special and regular 
education, and related services personnel; and SEAs, LEAs, and State 
lead agencies to develop and implement individualized supports that 
improve children's outcomes and educational achievement.
    (b) Provide information and TA, including distance learning 
activities and ongoing professional development opportunities paired 
with on-site coaching, to family members of children who are deaf-blind 
and early intervention, special and regular education, and related 
services personnel working with children who are deaf-blind. 
Information and TA must focus on helping family members and early 
intervention, special and regular education, and related services 
personnel--
    (1) Identify developmental and educational milestones;
    (2) Develop age-appropriate Individualized Family Service Plans and 
standards-based Individualized Education Programs, which include 
measurable postsecondary goals for students who are at least 16 years 
old;
    (3) Use children's interests, preferences, and learning 
characteristics to support learning and development;
    (4) Use evidence-based practices to increase children's 
communication, language, concept development, social interactions, and 
adaptive behaviors, thereby improving early intervention and 
educational outcomes;
    (5) Use assistive and instructional technologies to maintain or 
improve children's functional and educational capabilities; and
    (6) Increase children's access to and participation in natural 
environments, which may include home and community settings, and age-
appropriate activities-based routines for those served under Part C of 
IDEA, and access to, and participation and progress in, the general 
education curriculum in the least restrictive environment for those 
served under Part B of IDEA.
    (c) Work with families, SEAs, State lead agencies, LEAs, and 
institutions of higher education (IHEs) to use information from the 
National Consortium on Deaf-Blindness and other appropriate sources to 
develop--
    (1) A shared understanding across the stakeholder groups of how to 
support children who are deaf-blind within local systems and 
communities;
    (2) A plan that addresses the professional development needs of 
personnel who serve children who are deaf-blind, including 
paraprofessionals who serve as interveners. An ``intervener'' is an 
individual who has received specialized training to assist children who 
are deaf-blind by (a) facilitating access to environmental information, 
such as who is present, what is being said, and what activities are 
occurring, (b) supporting their development and use of communication 
skills, and (c) promoting their social and emotional well-being by 
maintaining a trusting and interactive relationship (Alsop, Blaha, & 
Kloos, 2000). For further information regarding interveners see 
http://www.nationaldb.org/ISSelectedTopics.php?topicCatID=10; and
    (3) Program improvement strategies for the State Performance Plans 
and Annual Performance Reports and local program and school improvement 
activities.
    (d) Work with SEAs, LEAs, State lead agencies and, as appropriate, 
IHEs to implement the professional development plan.
    (e) If the project maintains a Web site, ensure that it meets 
government or industry-recognized standards for accessibility and links 
to the Web site operated by the Technical Assistance Coordination 
Center, which OSEP intends to fund in FY 2009.
    Leadership and Coordination Activities.
    (a) Communicate and collaborate, on an ongoing basis, with the 
National Consortium on Deaf-Blindness (NCDB) and ensure that the 
project's staff is aware of NCDB's resources, products, and services 
that may be used in its training and TA activities.
    (b) Communicate and collaborate, on an ongoing basis, with OSEP-
funded projects, including Parent Training and Information Centers; the 
Postsecondary Education Programs Network; the National Instructional 
Materials Accessibility Standard Development and Technical Assistance 
Centers; Bookshare.org for Education (B4E); the Center for Implementing 
Technology in Education; the Family Center on Technology and 
Disability; the National Center for Technology Innovation; the Regional 
Resource Centers; the National Center for Leadership in Vision 
Impairment; and low-incidence personnel development projects. This 
collaboration could include the

[[Page 28677]]

coordination of TA services, the planning and carrying out of TA 
meetings and events, and possible joint development of products.
    (c) Though product development should not be a primary function of 
this project, if the project identifies an emerging need for a product 
(e.g., print materials, DVDs, videos), submit for approval a proposal 
describing the content and purpose of the product prior to development 
to the OSEP Project Officer.
    (d) Participate in, organize, or facilitate, as appropriate, OSEP 
communities of practice (http://www.tacommunities.org) that are aligned 
with the project's objectives as a way to support discussions and 
collaboration among key stakeholders.
    (e) Contribute, on an ongoing basis, updated information on the 
project's services to OSEP's Technical Assistance and Dissemination 
Matrix (http://matrix.rrfcnetwork.org), which provides current 
information on Department-funded TA services to a range of 
stakeholders.
    (f) Maintain ongoing communication with the OSEP Project Officer 
through regular phone conversations and e-mail communication.

References

Alsop, L., Blaha, R., & Kloos, E. (2000). The intervener in early 
intervention and educational settings for children and youth with 
deafblindness (Briefing Paper). Monmouth, OR: The National Technical 
Assistance Consortium for Children and Young Adults Who Are Deaf-
Blind.
Collins, M. T. (1992). Educational Services. In J.W. Reiman & P.A. 
Johnson (Eds.), Proceedings from the National Symposium on Children 
and Youth Who Are Deaf-Blind (pp. 165-178). Monmouth, OR: Teaching 
Research Publications.
Killoran, J. (2007). The national deaf-blind child count: 1998-2005 
in review. Monmouth, OR: National Consortium on Deaf-Blindness. 
Retrieved April 7, 2009, from 
http://www.nationaldb.org/documents/products/Childcountreview0607Final.pdf.
Killorin, J., Davies, P., & McNulty, K. (August 2006). The NTAC 
Outcomes and Performance Indicators: A System for Documenting 
Outcomes for Children and Youth with Deaf-Blindness, their Families, 
and the Service Providers and Systems that Serve Them. Western 
Oregon University, Monmouth, OR. Retrieved April 7, 2009, from 
http://www.nationaldb.org/documents/products/OPIs12-08.pdf.
Markowitz, J. (April 2001). Personnel to Support the Education of 
Children and Youth with Deafblindness. Alexandria, VA: Project 
Forum.
McLetchie, B.A.B. (1992) Personnel Preparation. In J.W. Reiman & 
P.A. Johnson (Eds.), Proceedings from the National Symposium on 
Children and Youth Who Are Deaf-Blind (pp. 203-219). Monmouth, OR: 
Teaching Research Publications.
Muller, E. (2006, July). Deaf-blind child counts: Issues and 
challenges. Alexandria, VA: Project Forum.
Warner, R. (2007, February). The Real Deal. Presentation at the 
conference of Deafblindness: A Real Vision, Hampton, VA.

    Waiver of Proposed Rulemaking: Under the Administrative Procedure 
Act (APA) (5 U.S.C. 553), the Department generally offers interested 
parties the opportunity to comment on proposed priorities and 
requirements. Section 681(d) of IDEA, however, makes the public comment 
requirements of the APA inapplicable to the priority in this notice.
    Program Authority: 20 U.S.C. 1463 and 1481.
    Applicable Regulations: The Education Department General 
Administrative Regulations (EDGAR) in 34 CFR parts 74, 75, 77, 79, 80, 
81, 82, 84, 85, 86, 97, 98, and 99.

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


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

II. Award Information

    Type of Award: Discretionary grants.
    Estimated Available Funds: $160,000. Please refer to the ``Funding 
Level'' column in the chart shown in the Maximum Awards section of this 
notice for the estimated dollar amounts for individual awards.
    Estimated Range of Awards: $30,000-$65,000.
    Estimated Average Size of Awards: $53,000.
    Maximum Awards: The following chart lists the maximum amount of 
funds for the District of Columbia; Puerto Rico; and the Virgin Islands 
for a single budget period of 12 months. A State may be served by only 
one supported project. In determining the maximum funding levels for 
each State the Secretary considered, among other things, the following 
factors:
    (1) The total number of children from birth through age 21 in the 
State.
    (2) The number of people in poverty in the State.
    (3) The previous funding levels.
    (4) The maximum and minimum funding amounts.

                2009 Funding Levels for CFDA No. 84.326C
------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                               Funding
                           State                                level
------------------------------------------------------------------------
DC.........................................................      $65,000
PR.........................................................       65,000
VI.........................................................       30,000
------------------------------------------------------------------------

    We will reject an application for a State project that proposes a 
budget exceeding the funding level for any single budget period of 12 
months. An applicant may apply for more than one State project award; 
however a separate application must be submitted for each State 
project. We will reject an application that proposes to serve more than 
one State or area specified in the chart above.
    The Assistant Secretary for Special Education and Rehabilitative 
Services may change the maximum amount through a notice published in 
the Federal Register.
    Estimated Number of Awards: 3.

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

    Project Period: Up to 48 months.

III. Eligibility Information

    1. Eligible Applicants: SEAs; LEAs, including public charter 
schools that are considered LEAs under State law; IHEs; other public 
agencies; private nonprofit organizations; outlying areas; FAS; Indian 
tribes or tribal organizations; and for-profit organizations.
    2. Cost Sharing or Matching: This competition does not require cost 
sharing or matching.
    3. Other: General Requirements--(a) The projects funded under this 
competition must make positive efforts to employ and advance in 
employment qualified individuals with disabilities (see section 606 of 
IDEA).
    (b) Applicants and grant recipients funded under this competition 
must involve individuals with disabilities or parents of individuals 
with disabilities ages birth through 26 in planning, implementing, and 
evaluating the projects (see section 682(a)(1)(A) of IDEA).

IV. Application and Submission Information

    1. Address to Request Application Package: Education Publications 
Center (ED Pubs), P.O. Box 1398, Jessup, MD 20794-1398. Telephone, toll 
free: 1-877-433-7827. FAX: (301) 470-1244. If you use a 
telecommunications device for the deaf (TDD), call, toll free: 1-877-
576-7734.
    You can contact ED Pubs at its Web site, also: 
    http://www.ed.gov/pubs/edpubs.html

[[Page 28678]]

 or at its e-mail address: edpubs@inet.ed.gov.
    If you request an application package from ED Pubs, be sure to 
identify this program or competition as follows: CFDA Number 84.326C.
    Individuals with disabilities can obtain a copy of the application 
package in an accessible format (e.g., braille, large print, audiotape, 
or computer diskette) by contacting the person or team listed under 
Accessible Format in section VIII of this notice.
    2. Content and Form of Application Submission: Requirements 
concerning the content of an application, together with the forms you 
must submit, are in the application package for this competition.
    Page Limit: The application narrative (Part III of the application) 
is where you, the applicant, address the selection criteria that 
reviewers use to evaluate your application. You must limit the 
application narrative to the equivalent of no more than 70 pages, using 
the following standards:
     A ``page'' is 8.5 x 11, on one side 
only, with 1 margins at the top, bottom, and both sides.
     Double space (no more than three lines per vertical inch) 
all text in the application narrative, including titles, headings, 
footnotes, quotations, references, and captions, as well as all text in 
charts, tables, figures, and graphs.
     Use a font that is either 12 point or larger, or no 
smaller than 10 pitch (characters per inch).
    The page limit does not apply to Part I, the cover sheet; Part II, 
the budget section, including the narrative budget justification; Part 
IV, the assurances and certifications; or the one-page abstract, the 
resumes, the bibliography, the references, or the letters of support. 
However, the page limit does apply to the application narrative in Part 
III.
    We will reject your application if you exceed the page limit or if 
you apply other standards and exceed the equivalent of the page limit.
    3. Submission Dates and Times:
    Applications Available: June 17, 2009.
    Deadline for Transmittal of Applications: July 17, 2009.
    Applications for grants under this competition may be submitted 
electronically using the Electronic Grant Application System (e-
Application) accessible through the Department's e-Grants site, or in 
paper format by mail or hand delivery. For information (including dates 
and times) about how to submit your application electronically, or in 
paper format by mail or hand delivery, please refer to section IV.6. 
Other Submission Requirements of this notice.
    We do not consider an application that does not comply with the 
deadline requirements.
    Individuals with disabilities who need an accommodation or 
auxiliary aid in connection with the application process should contact 
the person listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT in section VII 
of this notice. If the Department provides an accommodation or 
auxiliary aid to an individual with a disability in connection with the 
application process, the individual's application remains subject to 
all other requirements and limitations in this notice.
    Deadline for Intergovernmental Review: September 15, 2009.
    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 may be submitted electronically or in paper format by 
mail or hand delivery.
    a. Electronic Submission of Applications.
    If you choose to submit your application to us electronically, you 
must use e-Application, accessible through the Department's e-Grants 
Web site at: http://e-grants.ed.gov.
    While completing your electronic application, you will be entering 
data online that will be saved into a database. You may not e-mail an 
electronic copy of a grant application to us.
    Please note the following:
     Your participation in e-Application is voluntary.
     You must complete the electronic submission of your grant 
application by 4:30:00 p.m., Washington, DC time, on the application 
deadline date. E-Application will not accept an application for this 
competition after 4:30:00 p.m., Washington, DC time, on the application 
deadline date. Therefore, we strongly recommend that you do not wait 
until the application deadline date to begin the application process.
     The hours of operation of the e-Grants Web site are 6:00 
a.m. Monday until 7:00 p.m. Wednesday; and 6:00 a.m. Thursday until 
8:00 p.m. Sunday, Washington, DC time. Please note that, because of 
maintenance, the system is unavailable between 8:00 p.m. on Sundays and 
6:00 a.m. on Mondays, and between 7:00 p.m. on Wednesdays and 6:00 a.m. 
on Thursdays, Washington, DC time. Any modifications to these hours are 
posted on the e-Grants Web site.
     You will not receive additional point value because you 
submit your application in electronic format, nor will we penalize you 
if you submit your application in paper format.
     You must submit all documents electronically, including 
all information you typically provide on the following forms: The 
Application for Federal Assistance (SF 424), the Department of 
Education Supplemental Information for SF 424, Budget Information--Non-
Construction Programs (ED 524), and all necessary assurances and 
certifications. You must 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 in this paragraph 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.
     Prior to submitting your electronic application, you may 
wish to print a copy of it for your records.
     After you electronically submit your application, you will 
receive an automatic acknowledgment that will include a PR/Award number 
(an identifying number unique to your application).
     Within three working days after submitting your electronic 
application, fax a signed copy of the SF 424 to the Application Control 
Center after following these steps:
    (1) Print SF 424 from e-Application.
    (2) The applicant's Authorizing Representative must sign this form.
    (3) Place the PR/Award number in the upper right hand corner of the 
hard-copy signature page of the SF 424.
    (4) Fax the signed SF 424 to the Application Control Center at 
(202) 245-6272.
     We may request that you provide us original signatures on 
other forms at a later date.
    Application Deadline Date Extension in Case of System 
Unavailability: If you are prevented from electronically submitting 
your application on the application deadline date because e-Application 
is unavailable, we will grant you an extension of one business day to 
enable you to transmit your

[[Page 28679]]

application electronically, by mail, or by hand delivery. We will grant 
this extension if--
    (1) You are a registered user of e-Application and you have 
initiated an electronic application for this competition; and
    (2)(a) E-Application is unavailable for 60 minutes or more between 
the hours of 8:30 a.m. and 3:30 p.m., Washington, DC time, on the 
application deadline date; or
    (b) E-Application is unavailable for any period of time between 
3:30 p.m. and 4:30:00 p.m., Washington, DC time, on the application 
deadline date.
    We must acknowledge and confirm these periods of unavailability 
before granting you an extension. To request this extension or to 
confirm our acknowledgment of any system unavailability, you may 
contact either (1) the person listed elsewhere in this notice under FOR 
FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT (see VII. Agency Contact) or (2) the e-
Grants help desk at 1-888-336-8930. If e-Application is unavailable due 
to technical problems with the system and, therefore, the application 
deadline is extended, an e-mail will be sent to all registered users 
who have initiated an e-Application.
    Extensions referred to in this section apply only to the 
unavailability of e-Application. If e-Application is available, and, 
for any reason, you are unable to submit your application 
electronically or you do not receive an automatic acknowledgment of 
your submission, you may submit your application in paper format by 
mail or hand delivery in accordance with the instructions in this 
notice.
    b. Submission of Paper Applications by Mail.
    If you submit your application in paper format by mail (through the 
U.S. Postal Service or a commercial carrier), you must mail the 
original and two copies of your application, on or before the 
application deadline date, to the Department at the following address: 
U.S. Department of Education, Application Control Center, Attention: 
(CFDA Number 84.326C), LBJ Basement Level 1, 400 Maryland Avenue, SW., 
Washington, DC 20202-4260.
    You must show proof of mailing consisting of one of the following:
    (1) A legibly dated U.S. Postal Service postmark.
    (2) A legible mail receipt with the date of mailing stamped by the 
U.S. Postal Service.
    (3) A dated shipping label, invoice, or receipt from a commercial 
carrier.
    (4) Any other proof of mailing acceptable to the Secretary of the 
U.S. Department of Education.
    If you mail your application through the U.S. Postal Service, we do 
not accept either of the following as proof of mailing:
    (1) A private metered postmark.
    (2) A mail receipt that is not dated by the U.S. Postal Service.
    If your application is postmarked after the application deadline 
date, we will not consider your application.

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

    c. Submission of Paper Applications by Hand Delivery.
    If you submit your application in paper format by hand delivery, 
you (or a courier service) 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 
84.326C), 550 12th Street, SW., Room 7041, Potomac Center Plaza, 
Washington, DC 20202-4260.

The Application Control Center accepts hand deliveries daily between 
8:00 a.m. and 4:30:00 p.m., Washington, DC time, except Saturdays, 
Sundays, and Federal holidays.

    Note for Mail or Hand Delivery of Paper Applications: If you mail 
or hand deliver your application to the Department--
    (1) You must indicate on the envelope and--if not provided by the 
Department--in Item 11 of the SF 424 the CFDA number, including suffix 
letter, if any, of the competition under which you are submitting your 
application; and
    (2) The Application Control Center will mail to you a notification 
of receipt of your grant application. If you do not receive this grant 
notification within 15 business days from the application deadline 
date, you should call the U.S. Department of Education Application 
Control Center at (202) 245-6288.

V. Application Review Information

    1. Selection Criteria: The selection criteria for this competition 
are from 34 CFR 75.210 and are listed in the application package.
    2. Review and Selection Process: In the past, the Department has 
had difficulty finding peer reviewers for certain competitions because 
so many individuals who are eligible to serve as peer reviewers have 
conflicts of interest. The Standing Panel requirements under IDEA also 
have placed additional constraints on the availability of reviewers. 
Therefore, the Department has determined that, for some discretionary 
grant competitions, applications may be separated into two or more 
groups and ranked and selected for funding within the 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. However, if the 
Department decides to select an equal number of applications in each 
group for funding, this may result in different cut-off points for 
fundable applications in each group.

VI. Award Administration Information

    1. Award Notices: If your application is successful, we notify your 
U.S. Representative and U.S. Senators and send you a Grant Award 
Notification (GAN). We may notify you informally, also.
    If your application is not evaluated or not selected for funding, 
we notify you.
    2. Administrative and National Policy Requirements: We identify 
administrative and national policy requirements in the application 
package and reference these and other requirements in the Applicable 
Regulations section of this notice.
    We reference the regulations outlining the terms and conditions of 
an award in the Applicable Regulations section of this notice and 
include these and other specific conditions in the GAN. The GAN also 
incorporates your approved application as part of your binding 
commitments under the grant.
    3. Reporting: At the end of your project period, you must submit a 
final performance report, including financial information, as directed 
by the Secretary. If you receive a multi-year award, you must submit an 
annual performance report that provides the most current performance 
and financial expenditure information as directed by the Secretary 
under 34 CFR 75.118. The Secretary may also require more frequent 
performance reports under 34 CFR 75.720(c). For specific requirements 
on reporting, please go to 
http://www.ed.gov/fund/grant/apply/appforms/appforms.html
    4. Performance Measures: Under the Government Performance and 
Results Act of 1993 (GPRA), the Department has established a set of 
performance measures, including long-term

[[Page 28680]]

measures, that are designed to yield information on various aspects of 
the effectiveness and quality of the Technical Assistance and 
Dissemination To Improve Services and Results for Children With 
Disabilities program. These measures focus on the extent to which 
projects provide high quality products and services, the relevance of 
project products and services to educational and early intervention 
policy and practice, and the use of products and services to improve 
educational and early intervention policy and practice.
    Grantees will be required to provide information related to these 
measures in annual reports to the Department.
    Grantees also will be required to report information on their 
project's performance in annual reports to the Department (34 CFR 
75.590).

VII. Agency Contact

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Anne Smith, U.S. Department of 
Education, 400 Maryland Avenue, SW., Room 4066, Potomac Center Plaza 
(PCP), Washington, DC 20202-2600. Telephone: (202) 245-7529.
    If you use a TDD, call the Federal Relay Service (FRS), toll-free, 
at 1-800-877-8339.

VIII. Other Information

    Accessible Format: Individuals with disabilities can obtain this 
document and a copy of the application package in an accessible format 
(e.g., braille, large print, audiotape, or computer diskette) by 
contacting the Grants and Contracts Services Team, U.S. Department of 
Education, 400 Maryland Avenue, SW., Room 5075, PCP, Washington, DC 
20202-2550. Telephone: (202) 245-7363. If you use a TDD, call the FRS, 
toll free, at 1-800-877-8339.
    Electronic Access to This Document: You can view this document, as 
well as all other documents of this Department published in the Federal 
Register, in text or Adobe Portable Document Format (PDF) 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.

    Delegation of Authority: The Secretary of Education has delegated 
authority to Andrew J. Pepin, Executive Administrator for the Office of 
Special Education and Rehabilitative Services, to perform the functions 
of the Assistant Secretary for Special Education and Rehabilitative 
Services.

    Dated: June 11, 2009.
Andrew J. Pepin,
Executive Administrator for Special Education and Rehabilitative 
Services.
[FR Doc. E9-14258 Filed 6-16-09; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 4000-01-P