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Districts may apply for new federal funding for school innovation programs that target “high need students”

From the National School Boards Association

School districts may be interested in applying for $135 million in “i3” (Investing in Innovation) funds that can be used to develop, validate or scale up effective innovations to improve academic achievement for high-need students. 

Eligible i3 applicants are either a local educational agency (LEA), or a nonprofit organization in partnership with one or more LEAs or a consortium of schools.  Applicants must address one of the eight absolute priorities in their applications:

1. Improving the effectiveness of teachers or principals

2. Improving low-performing schools

3. Improving science, technology, engineering, and mathematics education; also known as STEM 

4. Improving academic outcomes for students with disabilities

5. Improving academic outcomes for English learners

6. Improving parent and family engagement

7. Effective use of technology

8. Serving rural communities

Additional information and resources about the pre-application process include a prerecorded i3 overview webinar (highly recommended) and the Notice Inviting Applications. Both are on the U.S. Department of Education’s i3 website here  http://www2.ed.gov/programs/innovation/index.html.

The deadline for pre-applications is Friday, April 26 at 4:30 p.m. ET.  Applications must be submitted electronically at the www.Grants.gov website.  Applicants must be registered on Grants.gov and this process can take a few days, so register early.

Following peer review of pre-applications, some pre-applicants will be invited by the department to submit full applications (in a change from prior competitions, all pre-applicants may submit a full application, even if not invited to do so by the department).   Funds will be obligated by Dec. 31. 

Questions may be directed to Lucy Gettman, Director of Federal Programs at lgettman@nsba.org  or 703-838-6763.