Funding GRANTS
What Should I Know About ED Grants? -- Wrapping It Up
September 1998
Archived Information

Finishing project activities by the end of a budget or project period is only half the story of a grant project. The other half is telling the sponsoring agency--in this case, the Department of Education--about it. You should put as much care into timely, accurate, and comprehensive reporting of activities you undertake as you put into planning those same activities when writing the application. Your reporting, in turn, becomes the basis for the grant team’s evaluation of the effectiveness of its programs, as well as its own reporting to Congress, the General Accounting Office, and the public. This section answers some frequently asked questions about the required reports and points you toward staff members in the Department who can help you complete them.

What happens after the project has ended?

The grant team begins steps to officially close out a grant after the expiration or termination of grant support (i.e., usually after the end of the project period). During grant closeout, the Department makes sure that all applicable administrative actions, as well as the required work of a grant project, have been completed and that all federal funds have been properly accounted for.

What is my role in this process? What responsibilities do I have after the project has ended?

Grantees are responsible for preparing a FINAL Performance Report after the project has ended. (Cooperative agreements might require additional items as well.) The Department requires that all grantees send this final report within 90 days after the end of the project period. Attachment B of the Grant Award Notification provides details about the report that must be submitted under your program. Be sure that you always provide complete and accurate information in the report and include the PR/Award number of your project.

What happens if I cannot send my final report by the due date because I have not finished the work of the project?

If you have not completed the work of your project, you may extend the project period for up to twelve months by notifying your grant team of the extension at least 10 days before the expiration date specified in the grant award. While extending your grant does not require prior approval by the grant team, you must still clearly justify your reasons for extending the project period and demonstrate that: 1) a statute, regulation, or other condition of the award does not prohibit the extension; 2) the extension does not involve the obligation of additional federal funds; and 3) the extension is to carry out the activities in the approved application. The final reports must be submitted 90 days after the end of the newly specified grant expiration date.

What happens if I have completed the work of the project but cannot send my final report by the due date for some other valid reason?

The grant team might extend the due date for your final report or other required documents if you send a request in writing with a strong justification of the need to do so.

How do I get help completing my report?

Your grant team can give you guidance on the content and format for the performance report(s) you are required to send.

Where do I send my report and how many do I need to send?

Grantees should send one original and one copy of the final performance report to the Department unless told otherwise by the grant team. Refer to the attachments and enclosures with your Grant Award Notification for the address where you must send your report (or other required documents). Always write your PR/Award number on all documents.

What happens if I do not send the Department required reports?

Not sending reports or other required documents can place your organization in noncompliance with the terms and conditions of the grant award. Noncompliance jeopardizes your chance for future funding from the Department. Therefore, it is critical that you send all your reports by the due dates to the proper persons.

Do I have to keep any records related to my grant project after the Department closes out my grant?

Yes, almost all of the Department’s programs fall under the record retention provisions of the General Education Provisions Act (GEPA), which require you to maintain grant records for three years after the completion of the activities for which grant funds were used (usually interpreted by the Department as three years after the end date of the project period). Your grant team can answer any questions you have about record retention.

Doing It Right
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Last Modified: 10/26/2004