- (a) IN GENERAL- The Secretary is authorized —
- (1) to collect systematic data on the effectiveness of the programs assisted under this part in reducing school dropout rates and increasing school reentry and secondary school graduation rates;
- (2) to establish a national clearinghouse of information on effective school dropout prevention and reentry programs that shall disseminate to State educational agencies, local educational agencies, and schools —
- (A) the results of research on school dropout prevention and reentry; and
- (B) information on effective programs, best practices, and Federal resources to —
- (i) reduce annual school dropout rates;
- (ii) increase school reentry; and
- (iii) increase secondary school graduation rates;
- (3) to provide technical assistance to State educational agencies, local educational agencies, and schools in designing and implementing programs and securing resources to implement effective school dropout prevention and reentry programs;
- (4) to establish and consult with an interagency working group that shall —
- (A) address inter- and intra-agency program coordination issues at the Federal level with respect to school dropout prevention and reentry, and assess the targeting of existing Federal services to students who are most at risk of dropping out of school, and the cost-effectiveness of various programs and approaches used to address school dropout prevention and reentry;
- (B) describe the ways in which State educational agencies and local educational agencies can implement effective school dropout prevention and reentry programs using funds from a variety of Federal programs, including the programs under this part; and
- (C) examine Federal programs that may have a positive impact on secondary school graduation or school reentry;
- (5) to carry out a national recognition program in accordance with subsection (b) that recognizes schools that have made extraordinary progress in lowering school dropout rates; and
- (6) to use funds made available for this subpart to carry out the evaluation required under section 1830(c).
- (b) RECOGNITION PROGRAM-
- (1) ESTABLISHMENT- The Secretary shall —
- (A) establish a national recognition program; and
- (B) develop uniform national guidelines for the recognition program that shall be used to recognize eligible schools from nominations submitted by State educational agencies.
- (2) RECOGNITION- The Secretary shall recognize, under the recognition program established under paragraph (1), eligible schools.
- (3) SUPPORT- The Secretary may make monetary awards to an eligible school recognized under this subsection in amounts determined appropriate by the Secretary that shall be used for dissemination activities within the eligible school district or nationally.
- (4) DEFINITION OF ELIGIBLE SCHOOL- In this subsection, the term eligible school' means a public middle school or secondary school, including a charter school, that has implemented comprehensive reforms that have been effective in lowering school dropout rates for all students —
- (A) in that secondary school or charter school; or
- (B) in the case of a middle school, in the secondary school that the middle school feeds students into.
- (c) CAPACITY BUILDING-
- (1) IN GENERAL- The Secretary, through a contract with one or more non-Federal entities, may conduct a capacity building and design initiative in order to increase the types of proven strategies for school dropout prevention and reentry that address the needs of an entire school population rather than a subset of students.
- (2) NUMBER AND DURATION-
- (A) NUMBER- The Secretary may award not more than five contracts under this subsection.
- (B) DURATION- The Secretary may award a contract under this subsection for a period of not more than 5 years.
- (d) SUPPORT FOR EXISTING REFORM NETWORKS-
- (1) IN GENERAL- The Secretary may provide appropriate support to eligible entities to enable the eligible entities to provide training, materials, development, and staff assistance to schools assisted under this part.
- (2) DEFINITION OF ELIGIBLE ENTITY- In this subsection, the term eligible entity' means an entity that, prior to the date of enactment of the Dropout Prevention Act —
- (A) provided training, technical assistance, and materials related to school dropout prevention or reentry to 100 or more elementary schools or secondary schools; and
- (B) developed and published a specific educational program or design related to school dropout prevention or reentry for use by the schools.
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