FR Doc 05-4616
[Federal Register: March 9, 2005 (Volume 70, Number 45)]
[Page 11623-11625]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access []
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Grants to States To Improve Management of Drug and Violence
Prevention Programs

AGENCY: Office of Safe and Drug-Free Schools, Department of Education.

ACTION: Notice of proposed priorities and requirements.


SUMMARY: The Assistant Deputy Secretary for Safe and Drug-Free Schools
proposes priorities and requirements under the Safe and Drug-Free
Schools and Communities Act (SDFSCA) National Programs for the Grants
to States to Improve Management of Drug and Violence Prevention
Programs. We may use one or more of these priorities and requirements
for competitions in fiscal year (FY) 2005 and later years. We take this
action to focus Federal financial assistance on an identified national
need. We intend the priorities and requirements to facilitate the
development, enhancement, or expansion of the capacity of States and
other entities that receive SDFSCA State Grants program funds to
collect, analyze, and use data to improve the management of drug and
violence prevention programs.

DATES: We must receive your comments on or before April 8, 2005.

ADDRESSES: Address all comments about these proposed priorities and
requirements to: Deborah Rudy, U.S. Department of Education, 400
Maryland Avenue, SW., room 3E330, Washington, DC 20202-6450. If you
prefer to send your comments through the Internet, use the following
    You must include the term ``184R Comments'' in the subject line of
your electronic message.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Deborah Rudy, Telephone: (202) 260-
1875 or via Internet:
    If you use a telecommunications device for the deaf (TDD), you may
call the Federal Information Relay Service (FIRS) 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 contact person listed under FOR FURTHER


Invitation to Comment

    We invite you to submit comments regarding these proposed
priorities and requirements. To ensure that your

[[Page 11624]]

comments have maximum effect in developing the notice of final
priorities and requirements, we urge you to identify clearly the
specific proposed priority or requirement that each comment addresses.
    We invite you to assist us in complying with the specific
requirements of Executive Order 12866 and its overall requirement of
reducing regulatory burden that might result from these proposed
priorities and requirements. Please let us know of any further
opportunities we should take to reduce potential costs or increase
potential benefits while preserving the effective and efficient
administration of the program.
    During and after the comment period, you may inspect all public
comments about these proposed priorities and requirements in room
3E330, 400 Maryland Avenue, SW., Washington, DC, between the hours of
8:30 a.m. and 4 p.m., eastern time, Monday through Friday of each week
except Federal holidays.

Assistance to Individuals With Disabilities in Reviewing the Rulemaking

    On request, we will supply an appropriate aid, such as a reader or
print magnifier, to an individual with a disability who needs
assistance to review the comments or other documents in the public
rulemaking record for these proposed priorities and requirements. If
you want to schedule an appointment for this type of aid, please
contact the person listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT.

Proposed Priorities and Requirements

    We will announce the final priorities and requirements in a notice
in the Federal Register. We will determine the final priorities and
requirements after considering responses to this notice and other
information available to the Department. This notice does not preclude
us from proposing or funding additional priorities or requirements
subject to meeting applicable rulemaking requirements.

    Note: This notice does not solicit applications. In any year in
which we choose to use one or more of these proposed priorities or
requirements, we invite applications through a notice in the Federal
Register. The effect of each type of priority follows:

    Absolute priority: Under an absolute priority we consider only
applications that meet the priority (34 CFR 75.105(c)(3)).
    Competitive preference priority: Under a competitive preference
priority we give competitive preference to an application by either (1)
awarding additional points, depending on how well or the extent to
which the application meets the competitive priority (34 CFR
75.105(c)(2)(i)); or (2) selecting an application that meets the
competitive priority over an application of comparable merit that does
not meet the priority (34 CFR 75.105(c)(2)(ii)).
    Invitational priority: Under an invitational priority we are
particularly interested in applications that meet the invitational
priority. However, we do not give an application that meets the
invitational priority a competitive or absolute preference over other
applications (34 CFR 75.105(c)(1)).


Proposed Priorities

Proposed Absolute Priority-Developing, Enhancing, or Expanding the
Capacity of States and Other Entities that Receive SDFSCA State Grants
Funds to Collect, Analyze, and use Data to Improve the Quality of Drug
and Violence Prevention Programs
    Background: States and their local communities are implementing a
variety of programs, activities, and strategies designed to prevent
youth drug use and violence in schools. Just as policymakers, education
professionals, and parents seek reliable information about student
academic progress, stakeholders also need sufficient information and
data to assess the nature of youth drug and violence problems in their
communities, select research-based approaches to preventing these
problems, and determine whether these prevention efforts are effective.
    The U.S. Department of Education currently requires States to
collect and report data on youth drug and violence prevention problems
and prevention efforts through a uniform management information and
reporting system (UMIRS) that States must establish under section
4112(c)(3) of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965, as
amended by the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001 (ESEA) (20 U.S.C.
7112(c)(3)). States also need to use objective data about school safety
to meet the Unsafe School Choice Option (USCO) requirements in section
9532 of the ESEA.
    States and local communities face several challenges in
implementing these requirements and in turn operating and managing
effective drug and violence prevention programs. These challenges may
     Lack of standardized collection instruments and
definitions both within and across States;
     Lack of expertise related to collecting data about youth
drug use and violence;
     Lack of time and other resources to support high-quality
data collection and analysis in these areas;
     Unfavorable community and media reaction to high rates of
youth drug use and violence that discourages full and accurate
reporting; and
     Negative consequences for administrators whose schools
have high rates of violent incidents.
    The Department is proposing this priority therefore to provide
support to States to explore strategies that will help them address
these challenges so that they can enhance their capacity to collect and
use data to assess and improve the implementation of their drug and
violence prevention programs.
    Absolute Priority: This priority would support projects to develop,
enhance, or expand the capacity of States and other entities that
receive SDFSCA State Grants program funds to collect, analyze, and use
data to improve the management of drug and violence prevention
programs. At a minimum, applicants must propose projects to develop,
enhance, or expand the capacity of the State educational agency (SEA),
the State agency administering the Governor's funding under the SDFSCA
State Grants program, and local educational agencies and community-
based organizations that receive SDFSCA State Grants program funding.
    Specifically, projects must be designed to:
    (a) Include activities designed to expand the capacity of local
recipients of SDFSCA funds to use data to assess needs, establish
performance measures, select appropriate interventions, monitor
progress toward established performance measures, and disseminate
information about youth drug use and violence to the public;
    (b) Collect data that, at a minimum, meet the requirements of the
UMIRS described in section 4112(c)(3) of the ESEA;
    (c) Operate with the aid of a technology-based system for analyzing
and interpreting school crime and violence data;
    (d) Be consistent with the State's Performance-Based Data
Management Initiative (PBDMI) strategy and produce data that can be
transmitted to the U.S. Department of Education via the Department's
Education Data Exchange Network (EDEN) project, which facilitates the
transfer of information from State administrative records to the
Department to satisfy reporting requirements for certain programs

[[Page 11625]]

administered by the Department, including the SDFSCA State Grants
    (e) Be an enhancement to, or capable of merging data with, the
State's student information system if such exists or if the State does
not yet have a statewide, longitudinal student data system, the project
should include the capacity to merge with such a system in the future;
    (f) Include validation and verification activities at the State and
sub-State recipient levels designed to ensure the accuracy of data
collected and reported.
Proposed Competitive Preference Priority--Use of Uniform Crime
Reporting Definitions
    Background: Uniform definitions of data elements make it easier for
stakeholders to collect, analyze, and compare data across district,
county, State, and other boundaries. The Federal Bureau of
Investigation's Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) program is the most
universal crime reporting system in the country and collects
information about the following crimes: Homicide; forcible rape;
robbery; aggravated assault; burglary; larceny-theft; motor vehicle
theft; and arson. The majority of States have a UCR program and many
require mandatory reporting. Further information about the UCR is
available online at

    Competitive Preference Priority: The collection of incident data
for projects under Priority 1 will be done in a manner consistent with
the definitions and protocols developed under the Federal Bureau of
Investigation's UCR program.
Other Proposed Requirements
    Eligibility of Applicants: We propose that eligible applicants for
this program be limited to State educational agencies (SEAs) or other
State agencies administering the SDFSCA State Grants program.
    We propose this requirement to focus projects on Statewide systems
of data collection that support the UMIRS requirements. Local or
regional projects are inconsistent with the emphasis in the SDFSCA on
Statewide data collection systems for youth drug and violence
prevention information.
    Memorandum of Understanding: We propose that applicants be required
to include a memorandum of understanding (MOU) in their application
that outlines project roles and responsibilities of the participants
and that contains:
    1. The signatures of:
    a. The authorized representative(s) for the SEA, and
    b. The authorized representative(s) for the State agency (or
agencies) receiving the Governor's portion of SDFSCA State Grants
program funding for the State.
    2. Evidence that the proposal has been reviewed by, and has the
approval of, the State's chief information officer (CIO) and/or chief
technology officer (CTO). The CIO and/or CTO may sign the required
memorandum of understanding, or may provide a separate document
including the required assurance.
    We propose this requirement in order to ensure that entities
responsible for the development of the UMIRS within a State will be
involved in the design and implementation of any funded project, and
that technical aspects of the project have the approval of the State
official charged with overseeing information management and technology
issues within the State.
    Technology-Based System: We propose that each application be
required to include a proposal for a technology-based system for
collecting, analyzing, and interpreting school crime and violence data.
Grant funds may be used in a variety of ways to support this system,
including updating an existing infrastructure, conducting basic
planning, and capacity building.
    We propose this requirement to ensure that grant funds are used to
support the development of a system that takes advantage of widely
available technology to support the efficient collection, analysis and
interpretation of school crime and violence data.

Executive Order 12866

    This notice of proposed priorities and requirements has been
reviewed in accordance with Executive Order 12866. Under the terms of
the order, we have assessed the potential costs and benefits of this
regulatory action.
    The potential costs associated with the notice of proposed
priorities and requirements are those resulting from statutory
requirements and those we have determined as necessary for
administering this program effectively and efficiently.
    In assessing the potential costs and benefits--both quantitative
and qualitative--of this notice of proposed priorities and
requirements, we have determined that the benefits of the proposed
priorities justify the costs.
    We have also determined that this regulatory action does not unduly
interfere with State, local, and tribal governments in the exercise of
their governmental functions.

Intergovernmental Review

    This program is subject to Executive Order 12372 and the
regulations in 34 CFR part 79. One of the objectives of the Executive
order is to foster an intergovernmental partnership and a strengthened
federalism. The Executive order relies on processes developed by State
and local governments for coordination and review of proposed Federal
financial assistance.
    This document provides early notification of our specific plans and
actions for this program.
    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 text or Adobe Portable Document Format (PDF) on the
Internet at the following site:

    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.
    You may also view this document in text or PDF at the following

    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:

    Dated: March 4, 2005.

(Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance Number 84.184R Grants to
States to Improve Management of Drug and Violence Prevention

    Program Authority: 20 U.S.C. 7131.
Deborah A. Price,
Assistant Deputy Secretary for Safe and Drug-Free Schools.
[FR Doc. 05-4616 Filed 3-8-05; 8:45 am]