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Notice

Agency Information Collection Activities: Comment Request

Document Details

Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

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This document has been published in the Federal Register. Use the PDF linked in the document sidebar for the official electronic format.

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AGENCY:

National Science Foundation.

ACTION:

Submission for OMB review; comment request.

SUMMARY:

The National Science Foundation (NSF) has submitted the following information collection requirement to OMB for review and clearance under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, Pub. L. 104-13. This is the second notice for the public comment; the first was published in the Federal Register at 70 FR 18430, and one comment was received. NSF is forwarding the proposed renewal submission to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for clearance simultaneously with the publication of this second notice. Comments regarding (a) whether the collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the agency, including whether the information will have practical utility; (b) the accuracy of the agency's estimate of burden including the validity of the methodology and assumptions used; (c) ways to enhance the quality, utility and clarity of the information to be collected; (d) ways to minimize the burden of the collection of information on those who are to respond, including through the use of appropriate automated, electronic, mechanical, or other technological collection techniques or other forms of information technology should be addressed to: Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs of OMB, Attention: Desk Officer for National Science Foundation, 725—17th Street, NW., Room 10235, Washington, DC 20503, and to Suzanne H. Plimpton, Reports Clearance Officer, National Science Foundation, 4201 Wilson Boulevard, Suite 295, Arlington, Virginia 22230 or send e-mail to splimpto@nsf.gov. Comments regarding these information collections are best assured of having their full effect if received within 30 days of this notification. Copies of the submission(s) may be obtained by calling 703-292-7556.

NSF may not conduct or sponsor a collection of information unless the collection of information displays a currently valid OMB control number and the agency informs potential persons who are to respond to the collection of information that such persons are not required to respond to the collection of information unless it displays a currently valid OMB control number.

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Comment: On April 11, 2005, we published in the Federal Register (70 FR 18430) a 60-day notice of our intent to request renewal of this information collection authority from OMB. In that notice, we solicited public comments for 60 days ending June 10, 2005. On comment was received from the public notice. The comment came from B. Sachau of Floram Park, NJ, via e-mail on April 18, 2005. Ms. Sachau objected to the information collection. Ms. Sachau suggested that NSF discontinue funding education-related projects and leave education to the state and local authorities and possibly to the Department of Education. Ms. Sachau had no specific suggestions for altering the data collection plans other than to discontinue or “sunset” them entirely.

Response: We responded to Ms. Sachau on April 27, 2005, stating that we could not comment on the political issues raised in her e-mail. We described the program and noted that NSF takes seriously its mission as Start Printed Page 35461directed by Congress and the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) to monitor and evaluate awards made under the Math and Science Partnership (MSP) program. On April 28, 2005 we received a reply from Ms. Sachau requesting her “comments stand for the public record. NSF believes that because the comment does not pertain to the collection of information on the required forms for which NSF is seeking OMB approval, NSF is preceding with the clearance request.

Title: The Evaluation of NSF's Math and Science Partnerships (MSP) Program.

OMB Control Number: 3145-0199.

Abstract

This document has been prepared to support the clearance of data collection instruments to be used in the evaluation of the Math and Science Partnership (MSP) Program. The goals for the program are to (1) ensure that all K-12 students have access to, are prepared for, and are encouraged to participate and succeed in challenging curricula and advanced mathematics and science courses; (2) enhance the quality, quantity, and diversity of the K-12 mathematics and science teacher workforce; and (3) develop evidence-based outcomes that contribute to our understanding of how students effectively learn mathematics and science. The motivational force for realizing these goals is the formation of partnerships between institutions of higher education (IHEs) and K-12 school districts. The role of IHE content faculty is the cornerstone of this intervention. In fact, it is the rigorous involvement of science, mathematics, and engineering faculty—and the expectation that both IHEs and K-12 school systems will be transformed—that distinguishes MSP from other education reform efforts.

The components of the overall MSP portfolio include active projects whose initial awards were made in prior MSP competitions, as well as those to be awarded in the current MSP competition: (1) Comprehensive Partnerships that implement change in mathematics and/or science educational practices in both higher education institutions and in schools and school districts, resulting in improved student achievement across the K-12 continuum; (2) Targeted Partnerships that focus on improved K-12 student achievement in a narrower grade range or disciplinary focus within mathematics or science; (3) Institute Partnerships: Teacher Institutes for the 21st Century that focus on the development of mathematics and science teachers as school-and district-based intellectual leaders and master teachers; and (4) Research, Evaluation and Technical Assistance (RETA) projects that build and enhance large-scale research and evaluation capacity for all MSP awardees and provide them with tools and assistance in the implementation and evaluation of their work.

The MSP online monitoring system, comprised of four web-based surveys, will collect a common core of data about each component of MSP. The web application for MSP will be developed with a modular design that incorporates templates and self-contained code modules for rapid development and ease of modification. A downloadable version will also be available for respondents who prefer a paper version that they can mail or fax to Westat. Information from the system will be used to document the Partnerships' annual progress toward meeting the Key features of MSP projects, such as developing partnerships between IHEs and local school districts, increasing teacher quality, quantity, and diversity, providing challenging courses and curricula, utilizing evidence-based design and outcome measures, and implementing institutional change and sustainability.

Expected Respondents

The expected respondents are principal investigators of all projects; STEM and education faculty members and administrators who participated in MSP; school districts and IHEs that are partners in an MSP project.

Burden on the Public

We estimate that the total number of annual respondents will be 1,848. The estimated annual response burden is 34,382.

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Dated: June 15, 2005.

Suzanne H. Plimpton,

Reports Clearance Officer, National Science Foundation.

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[FR Doc. 05-12094 Filed 6-17-05; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 7555-01-M