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Foreign Language Assistance Program (SEAs)

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Legislation, Regulations, and Guidance

Legislation: Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965, as amended, Title V, Part D, Subpart 9, Secs. 5491-5493; 20 U.S.C. 7259 - 7259(b).

Regulations: EDGAR; 34 CFR 75, 77, 79, 80, 81, 84, 85, 86, 97, 98, and 99.

Title V: Promoting Informed Parental Choice And Innovative Programs Part D: Fund For The Improvement Of Education Subpart 9-Foreign Language Assistance Program

This subpart may be cited as the Foreign Language Assistance Act of 2001.


    1. IN GENERAL.-The Secretary is authorized to make grants, on a competitive basis, to State educational agencies or local educational agencies to pay the Federal share of the cost of innovative model programs providing for the establishment, improvement, or expansion of foreign language study for elementary school and secondary school students.
    2. DURATION.-Each grant under paragraph (1) shall be awarded for a period of 3 years.
    1. GRANTS TO STATE EDUCATIONAL AGENCIES.-In awarding a grant under subsection (a) to a State educational agency, the Secretary shall support programs that promote systemic approaches to improving foreign language learning in the State.
    2. GRANTS TO LOCAL EDUCATIONAL AGENCIES.-In awarding a grant under subsection (a) to a local educational agency, the secretary shall support programs that-
      • (A) show the promise of being continued beyond the grant period;
      • (B) demonstrate approaches that can be disseminated and duplicated in other local educational agencies; and
      • (C) may include a professional development component.
    1. IN GENERAL.-The Federal share for each fiscal year shall be 50 percent.
    2. WAIVER.-Notwithstanding paragraph (1), the Secretary may determine the Federal share for any local educational agency which the Secretary determines does not have adequate resources to pay the non-Federal share of the cost of the activities assisted under this subpart.
  • (d) SPECIAL RULE.-Not less than 3/4 of the funds made available under section 5401 to carry out this subpart shall be used for the expansion of foreign language learning in the elementary grades.
  • (e) RESERVATION.-The Secretary may reserve not more than 5 percent of funds made available under section 5401 to carry out this subpart for a fiscal year to evaluate the efficacy of programs assisted under this subpart.


  • (a) IN GENERAL.-Any State educational agency or local educational agency desiring a grant under this subpart shall submit an application to the Secretary at such time, in such manner, and containing such information and assurances as the Secretary may require.
  • (b) SPECIAL CONSIDERATION.—The Secretary shall give special
    consideration to applications describing programs that—
    1. include intensive summer foreign language programs for professional development;
    2. link nonnative English speakers in the community with the schools in order to promote two-way language learning;
    3. promote the sequential study of a foreign language for students, beginning in elementary schools;
    4. make effective use of technology, such as computer assisted instruction, language laboratories, or distance learning, to promote foreign language study;
    5. promote innovative activities, such as foreign language immersion, partial foreign language immersion, or content based instruction; and
    6. are carried out through a consortium comprised of the agency receiving the grant and an elementary school or secondary school.

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Last Modified: 12/21/2011