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Office of Postsecondary Education; Overview Information; Fulbright-Hays Group Projects Abroad Program; Notice Inviting Applications for New Awards for Fiscal Year (FY) 2010

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Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) Number: 84.021A.

Dates: Applications Available: August 31, 2009.

Deadline for Transmittal of Applications: October 6, 2009.

Deadline for Intergovernmental Review: December 7, 2009.

Full Text of Announcement

I. Funding Opportunity Description

Purpose of Program: The Fulbright-Hays Group Projects Abroad (PA) Program supports overseas projects in training, research, and curriculum development in modern foreign languages and area studies for groups of teachers, students, and faculty engaged in a common endeavor. Projects are short-term and include seminars, curriculum development, or group research or study.

Priorities: In accordance with 34 CFR 75.105(b)(2)(ii), these priorities are from the regulations for this program (34 CFR 664.31(G) and 664.32).

Absolute Priority: For FY 2010, this priority is an absolute priority. Under 34 CFR 75.105(c)(3), we consider only applications that meet this priority.

This priority is:

Specific geographic regions of the world: A group project funded under this priority must focus on one or more of the following geographic regions of the world: Africa, East Asia, South Asia, Southeast Asia and the Pacific, the Western Hemisphere (Central and South America, Mexico, and the Caribbean), East Central Europe and Eurasia, and the Near East.

Competitive Preference and Invitational Priorities: Within this absolute priority, we are establishing the following competitive preference and invitational priorities.

Competitive Preference Priority I: For FY 2010, this priority is a competitive preference priority. Under 34 CFR 75.105(c)(2)(i) and 664.31(g), we award up to an additional five (5) points to an application that meets this priority.

This priority is:

Projects that provide substantive training and thematic focus, both during the pre-departure and in-country project phases, on any of the seventy-eight (78) languages deemed critical on the U.S. Department of Education's list of Less Commonly Taught Languages (LCTLs) found below.

This list includes the following: Akan (Twi-Fante), Albanian, Amharic, Arabic (all dialects), Armenian, Azeri (Azerbaijani), Balochi, Bamanakan (Bamana, Bambara, Mandikan, Mandingo, Maninka, Dyula), Belarusian, Bengali (Bangla), Berber (all languages), Bosnian, Bulgarian, Burmese, Cebuano (Visayan), Chechen, Chinese (Cantonese), Chinese (Gan), Chinese (Mandarin), Chinese (Min), Chinese (Wu), Croatian, Dari, Dinka, Georgian, Gujarati, Hausa, Hebrew (Modern), Hindi, Igbo, Indonesian, Japanese, Javanese, Kannada, Kashmiri, Kazakh, Khmer (Cambodian), Kirghiz, Korean, Kurdish (Kurmanji), Kurdish (Sorani), Lao, Malay (Bahasa Melayu or Malaysian), Malayalam, Marathi, Mongolian, Nepali, Oromo, Panjabi, Pashto, Persian (Farsi), Polish, Portuguese (all varieties), Quechua, Romanian, Russian, Serbian, Sinhala (Sinhalese), Somali, Swahili, Tagalog, Tajik, Tamil, Telugu, Thai, Tibetian, Tigrigna, Turkish, Turkmen, Ukrainian, Urdu, Uyghur/Uigur, Uzbek, Vietnamese, Wolof, Xhosa, Yoruba, and Zulu.Start Printed Page 44830

Competitive Preference Priority II: For FY 2010, this priority is a competitive preference priority. Under 34 CFR 75.105(c)(2)(i) and 664.31(g), we award up to an additional five (5) points to a short-term project abroad application that meets this priority.

This priority is:

Short-term projects abroad that develop and improve foreign language and/or area studies at elementary and secondary schools.

Invitational Priority: For FY 2010, this priority is an invitational priority. Under 34 CFR 75.105(c)(1) we do not give an application that meets this invitational priority a competitive or absolute preference over other applications.

This priority is:

Projects that, through collaborative efforts between colleges, departments, or schools of teacher education and other colleges, departments, or schools within a single institution of higher education or consortium of institutions of higher education, propose projects that provide pre-service training for K-12 teachers in foreign languages and international area studies in teacher education programs. Project activities should include pre-service teachers and teacher education students.

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Program Authority: U.S.C. 2452(b)(6).

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Applicable Regulations: (a) The Education Department General Administrative Regulations (EDGAR) in 34 CFR parts 74, 75, 77, 79, 80, 81, 82, 84, 85, 86, 97, 98, and 99. (b) The regulations for this program in 34 CFR part 664.

Note:

The regulations in 34 CFR part 86 apply to institutions of higher education (IHEs) only.

II. Award Information

Type of Award: Discretionary grants.

Estimated Available Funds: The Administration has requested $14,709,000 for the Fulbright-Hays programs (also referred to as the International Overseas programs) for FY 2010, of which we intend to allocate $2,320,000 for new short-term projects under the Fulbright-Hays Group Projects Abroad Program. The actual level funding, if any, depends on final Congressional action. However, we are inviting applications to allow enough time to complete the grant process if Congress appropriates funds for this program.

Note:

As part of its FY 2010 budget request, the Administration proposed to continue to allow funds under this program to be used to support the participation of individuals who plan to apply their language skills and knowledge of countries vital to the United States' national security in fields outside teaching, including government, the professions, or international development. Therefore, institutions of higher education may propose projects for visits and study in foreign countries by individuals in these fields, in additional to those planning a teaching career. However, whether authority exists to use funds for participants outside of the field of teaching depends on final Congressional action. Applicants will be given an opportunity to amend their applications if Congress does not provide this authority.

Estimated Range of Awards: $30,000-$90,000.

Estimated Average Size of Awards: $80,000.

Maximum Award: We will reject any short-term GPA application that proposes a budget exceeding $90,000 for a single budget period of 12 months.

Estimated Number of Awards: 29.

Note:

The Department is not bound by any estimates in this notice.

Project Period: Up to 12 months.

III. Eligibility Information

1. Eligible Applicants: (1) Institutions of higher education, (2) State departments of education, (3) Private nonprofit educational organizations, and (4) Consortia of these entities. Institutions that have never received an award under this program are encouraged to apply.

2. Cost Sharing or Matching: This program does not require cost sharing or matching.

IV. Application and Submission Information

1. Address to Request Application Package: You can obtain an application package via the Internet or from the Education Publications Center (ED Pubs). To obtain a copy via the Internet, use the following address: http://e-grants.ed.gov. To obtain a copy from ED Pubs, write, fax, or call the following: Education Publications Center, P.O. Box 1398, Jessup, MD 20794-1398. Telephone, toll free: 1-877-433-7827. FAX: (301) 470-1244. If you use a telecommunications device for the deaf (TDD), call, toll free: 1-877-576-7734.

You can contact ED Pubs at its Web site, also: http://www.ed.gov/​pubs/​edpubs.html or at its e-mail address: edpubs@inet.ed.gov.

If you request an application from ED Pubs, be sure to identify this program or competition as follows: CFDA number 84.021A.

Individuals with disabilities can obtain a copy of the application package in an accessible format (e.g., braille, large print, audiotape, or computer diskette) by contacting the person or team listed in this section.

2. Content and Form of Application Submission: Requirements concerning the content of an application, together with the forms you must submit, are in the application package for this program. Page Limit: The application narrative (Part III of the application) is the section in which the applicant addresses the selection criteria that reviewers use to evaluate the application. The application narrative must be limited to no more than 40 pages, using the following standards:

  • A “page” is 8.5″ x 11″, on one side only, with 1″ margins at the top, bottom, and both sides.
  • Double space (no more than three lines per vertical inch) all text in the application narrative, except titles, headings, footnotes, quotations, references, and captions. Charts, tables, figures, and graphs in the application narrative may be single spaced and will count toward the page limit.
  • Use a font that is either 12 point or larger; or, no smaller than 10 pitch (characters per inch). However, you may use a 10 point font in charts, tables, figures, and graphs.
  • Use one of the following fonts: Times New Roman, Courier, Courier New, or Arial. An application submitted in any other font (including Times Roman and Arial Narrow) will not be accepted.
  • The page limit does not apply to Part I, the Application for Federal Assistance face sheet (SF 424); the supplemental information form required by the Department of Education; Part II, the budget summary form (ED Form 524); Part IV, assurances, certifications, and the response to Section 427 of the General Education Provisions Act (GEPA); the table of contents; the one-page project abstract; the appendices; or the line item budget. If you include any attachments or appendices not specifically requested, these items will be counted as part of the program narrative [Part III] for purposes of the page limit requirement.

We will reject your application if you exceed the page limit.

3. Submission Dates and Times: Applications Available: August 31, 2009. Deadline for Transmittal of Applications: October 6, 2009.

Applications for grants under this program must be submitted electronically using the Electronic Grant Application site (e-Application) accessible through the Department's e-Grants system. For information (including dates and times) about how to submit your application electronically, or in paper format by Start Printed Page 44831mail or hand delivery if you qualify for an exception to the electronic submission requirement, please refer to Section IV. 6.

Other Submission Requirements of this notice.

We do not consider an application that does not comply with the deadline requirements.

Individuals with disabilities who need an accommodation or auxiliary aid in connection with the application process should contact the person listed under For Further Information Contact in Section VII of this notice. If the Department provides an accommodation or auxiliary air to an individual with a disability in connection with the application process, the individual's application remains subject to all other requirements and limitations in this notice.

Deadline for Intergovernmental Review: December 7, 2009.

4. Intergovernmental Review: This program is subject to Executive Order 12372 and the regulations in 34 CFR part 79. Information about Intergovernmental Review of Federal Programs under Executive Order 12372 is in the application package for this program.

5. Funding Restrictions: We reference regulations outlining funding restrictions in the Applicable Regulations section of this notice.

6. Other Submission Requirements: Applications for grants under this program must be submitted electronically unless you qualify for an exception to this requirement in accordance with the instructions in this section.

a. Electronic Submission of Applications

Applications for grants under the GPA Program, CFDA number 84.021A, must be submitted electronically by using e-Application, accessible through the Department's e-Grants portal page at: http://e-grants.ed.gov.

We will reject your application if you submit it in paper format unless, as described elsewhere in this section, you qualify for one of the exceptions to the electronic submission requirement and submit, no later than two weeks before the application deadline date, a written statement to the Department that you qualify for one of these exceptions. Further information regarding calculation of the date that is two weeks before the application deadline date is provided later in this section under Exception to Electronic Submission Requirement.

While completing your electronic application, you will be entering data online that will be saved into a database. You may not e-mail an electronic copy of a grant application to us.

Please note the following:

  • You must complete the electronic submission of your grant application by 4:30:00 p.m., Washington, DC time, on the application deadline date. E-Application will not accept an application for this program after 4:30:00 p.m., Washington, DC time, on the application deadline date. Therefore, we strongly recommend that you do not wait until the application deadline date to begin the application process.
  • The hours of operation of the e-Grants Web site are 6:00 a.m. Monday until 7:00 p.m. Wednesday; and 6:00 a.m. Thursday until 8:00 p.m. Sunday, Washington, DC time. Please note that, because of maintenance, the system is unavailable between 8:00 p.m. on Sundays and 6:00 a.m. on Mondays, and between 7:00 p.m. on Wednesdays and 6:00 a.m. on Thursdays, Washington, DC time. Any modifications to these hours are posted on the e-Grants Web site.
  • You will not receive additional point value because you submit your application in electronic format, nor will we penalize you if you qualify for an exception to the electronic submission requirement, as described elsewhere in this section, and submit your application in paper format.
  • You must submit all documents electronically, including all information you typically provide on the following forms: the Application for Federal Assistance (SF 424), the Department of Education Supplemental Information for SF 424, Budget Information—Non-Construction Programs (ED 524), and all necessary assurances and certifications. You must attach any narrative sections of your application as files in a .DOC (document), .RTF (rich text), or .PDF (Portable Document) format. If you upload a file type other than the three file types specified in this paragraph or submit a password protected file, we will not review that material.
  • Your electronic application must comply with any page limit requirements described in this notice.
  • Prior to submitting your electronic application, you may wish to print a copy of it for your records.
  • After you electronically submit your application, you will receive an automatic acknowledgment that will include a PR/Award number (an identifying number unique to your application).
  • We may request that you provide us original signatures on forms at a later date.

Application Deadline Date Extension in Case of e-Application Unavailability: If you are prevented from electronically submitting your application on the application deadline date because e-Application is unavailable, we will grant you an extension of one business day to enable you to transmit your application electronically, by mail, or by hand delivery. We will grant this extension if—(1) You are a registered user of e-Application and you have initiated an electronic application for this competition; and (2)(a) E-Application is unavailable for 60 minutes or more between the hours of 8:30 a.m. and 3:30 p.m., Washington, DC time, on the application deadline date; or

(b) E-Application is unavailable for any period of time between 3:30 p.m. and 4:30:00 p.m., Washington, DC time, on the application deadline date.

We must acknowledge and confirm these periods of unavailability before granting you an extension. To request this extension or to confirm our acknowledgment of any system unavailability, you may contact either (1) the person listed elsewhere in this notice under For Further Information Contact (See VII. Agency Contact) or (20 the e-Grants help desk at 1-888-336-8930. If e-Application is unavailable due to technical problems with the system and, therefore, the application deadline is extended, an e-mail will be sent to all registered users who have initiated an e-Application. Extensions referred to in this section apply only to the unavailability of e-Application.

Exception to Electronic Submission Requirement: You qualify for an exception to the electronic submission requirement, and may submit your application in paper format, if you are unable to submit an application through e-Application because—

  • You do not have access to the Internet; or
  • You do not have the capacity to upload large documents to e-Application;

and

  • No later than two weeks before the application deadline date (14 calendar days; or, if the fourteenth calendar day before the application deadline date falls on a Federal holiday, the next business day following the Federal holiday), you mail or fax a written statement to the Department, explaining which of the two grounds for an exception prevents you from using the Internet to submit your application. If you mail your written statement to the Start Printed Page 44832Department, it must be postmarked no later than two weeks before the application deadline date. If you fax your written statement to the Department, we must receive the faxed statement no later than two weeks before the application deadline date.

Address and mail or fax your statement to: Michelle Guilfoil, Fulbright-Hays Group Projects Abroad Program, U.S. Department of Education, 1990 K Street, NW., room 6098, Washington, DC 20006-8521. FAX: (202) 502-7860.

Your paper application must be submitted in accordance with the mail or hand delivery instructions described in this notice.

b. Submission of Paper Applications by Mail

If you qualify for an exception to the electronic submission requirement, you may mail (through the U.S. Postal Service or a commercial carrier) your application to the Department. You must mail the original and two copies of your application, on or before the application deadline date, to the Department at the following address: U.S. Department of Education, Application Control Center, Attention: (CFDA Number 84.021A), LBJ Basement Level 1, 400 Maryland Avenue, SW., Washington, DC 20202-4260.

You must show proof of mailing consisting of one of the following:

(1) A legibly dated U.S. Postal Service postmark.

(2) A legible mail receipt with the date of mailing stamped by the U.S. Postal Service.

(3) A dated shipping label, invoice, or receipt from a commercial carrier.

(4) Any other proof of mailing acceptable to the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Education.

If you mail your application through the U.S. Postal Service, we do not accept either of the following as proof of mailing:

(1) A private metered postmark.

(2) A mail receipt that is not dated by the U.S. Postal Service.

If your application is postmarked after the application deadline date, we will not consider your application.

Note:

The U.S. Postal Service does not uniformly provide a dated postmark. Before relying on this method, you should check with your local post office.

c. Submission of Paper Applications by Hand Delivery

If you qualify for an exception to the electronic submission requirement, you (or a courier service) may deliver your paper application to the Department by hand. You must deliver the original and two copies of your application, by hand, on or before the application deadline date, to the Department at the following address: U.S. Department of Education, Application Control Center, Attention: (CFDA Number 84.021A), 550 12th Street, SW., Room 7041, Potomac Center Plaza, Washington, DC 20202-4260.

The Application Control Center accepts hand deliveries daily between 8 a.m. and 4:30:00 p.m., Washington, DC time, except Saturdays, Sundays, and Federal holidays. Note for Mail or Hand Delivery of Paper Applications: If you mail or hand deliver your application to the Department—

(1) You must indicate on the envelope (and, if not provided by the Department, in Item 11 of the SF 424) the CFDA number, including suffix letter, if any, of the competition under which you are submitting your application; and

(2) The Application Control Center will mail to you a notification of receipt of your grant application. If you do not receive this grant notification within 15 business days from the application deadline date, you should call the U.S. Department of Education Application Control Center at (202) 245-6288.

V. Application Review Information

1. General: For FY 2010, short-term project applications will be reviewed by separate panels according to world area. Each panel reviews, scores, and ranks its applications separately from the applications assigned to the other world area panels. However, all applications will be ranked together from the highest to the lowest score for funding purposes.

2. Selection Criteria: The selection criteria for this program are from 34 CFR 664.31 and are as follows: (a) Plan of operation (20 points); (b) Quality of key personnel (10 points); (c) Budget and cost effectiveness (10 points); (d) Evaluation plan (20 points); (e) Adequacy of resources (5 points); (f) Potential impact of the project on the development of the study of modern foreign languages and area studies in American education (15 points); (g) Relevance to the applicant's education goals and its relationship to its program development in modern foreign languages and area studies (5 points); (h) The extent to which direct experience abroad is necessary to achieve the project's objectives and the effectiveness with which relevant host country resources will be utilized (10 points); and (i) The extent to which the proposed project addresses the competitive preference priorities (10 points).

VI. Award Administration Information

1. Award Notices: If your application is successful, we notify your U.S. Representative and U.S. Senators and send you a Grant Award Notification (GAN). We may notify you informally, also.

If your application is not evaluated or not selected for funding, we notify you.

2. Administrative and National Policy Requirements: We identify administrative and national policy requirements in the application package and reference these and other requirements in the Applicable Regulations section in this notice.

We reference the regulations outlining the terms and conditions of an award in the Applicable Regulations section in this notice and include these and other specific conditions in the GAN. The GAN also incorporates your approved application as part of your binding commitments under the grant.

3. Reporting: At the end of your project period, you must submit a final performance report, including financial information, as directed by the Secretary. If you receive a multi-year award, you must submit an annual performance report that provides the most current performance and financial expenditure information as directed by the Secretary under 34 CFR 75.118. Grantees are required to use the electronic data instrument International Resource Information System (IRIS) to complete the final report. The Secretary may also require more frequent performance reports under 34 CFR 75.720(c). For specific requirements on reporting, please go to http://www.ed.gov/​fund/​grant/​apply/​appforms/​appforms.html.

4. Performance Measures: Under the Government Performance and Results Act of 1993, the following measure will be used by the Department to evaluate the success of the program: Percentage of all Fulbright-Hays Group Projects Abroad Program projects judged to be successful by the program officer, based on a review of information provided in annual performance reports.

The information provided by grantees in their performance reports submitted via IRIS will be the source of data for this measure. Reporting screens for institutions can be viewed at: http://iris.ed.gov/​iris/​pdfs/​gpa_​director.pdf and http://iris.ed.gov/​iris/​pdfs/​gpa_​participant.pdf

VII. Agency Contact

For Further Information Contact: Michelle Guilfoil, Fulbright-Hays Group Projects Abroad Program, U.S. Department of Education, 1990 K Street, Start Printed Page 44833NW., room 6098, Washington, DC 20006-8521. Telephone: (202) 502-7625 or by e-mail: michelle.guilfoil@ed.gov. The agency contact person does not mail application materials and does not accept applications.

If you use a TDD, call the FRS, toll-free, at 1-800-877-8339.

VIII. Other Information

Accessible Format: Individuals with disabilities can obtain this document and a copy of the application package in an accessible format (e.g., braille, large print, audiotape, or computer diskette) on request to the program contact person listed under For Further Information Contact in Section VII of this notice.

Electronic Access to This Document: You can view this document, as well as all other documents of this Department published in the Federal Register, in text or Adobe Portable Document Format (PDF), on the Internet at the following site: http://www.ed.gov/​news/​fedregister.

To use PDF, you must have Adobe Acrobat Reader, which is available free at this site. If you have questions about using PDF, call the U.S. Government Printing Office (GPO), toll free, at 1-888-293-6498; or in the Washington, DC, area at (202) 512-1530.

Note:

The official version of this document is the document published in the Federal Register. Free Internet access to the official edition of the Federal Register and the Code of Federal Regulations is available on GPO Access at: http://www.gpoaccess.gov/​nara/​index.html.

Delegation of Authority: The Secretary of Education has delegated authority to Daniel T. Madzelan, Director, Forecasting and Policy Analysis for the Office of Postsecondary Education, to perform the functions and duties of the Assistant Secretary for Postsecondary Education.

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Dated: August 26, 2009.

Daniel T. Madzelan,

Director, Forecasting and Policy Analysis.

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[FR Doc. E9-20961 Filed 8-28-09; 8:45am]

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