Office of Postsecondary Education, Department of Education.
Overview Information: Native American-Serving Nontribal Institutions (NASNTI) Program
Notice inviting applications for new awards for fiscal year (FY) 2015.
Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) Number: 84.031X.
Applications Available: June 3, 2015.
Deadline for Transmittal of Applications: July 6, 2015.
Deadline for Intergovernmental Review: September 1, 2015.
Start Supplemental Information
Full Text of Announcement
I. Funding Opportunity Description
Purpose of Program: The NASNTI Program provides grants to eligible institutions of higher education (IHEs) that have an undergraduate enrollment of at least 10 percent Native American students to assist such institutions to plan, develop, undertake, and carry out activities to improve and expand such institutions' capacity to serve Native American and low-income individuals.
Background: We encourage applicants to read carefully the Selection Criteria section of this notice. Consistent with the Department's increasing emphasis in recent years on promoting evidence-based practices through our grant competitions, the Secretary will evaluate applications on the extent to which the proposed project is supported by a logic model that meets the evidence standard of “strong theory” (as defined in this notice). Resources to assist applicants in creating a logic model can be found here: http://ies.ed.gov/ncee/edlabs/regions/pacific/pdf/REL_2014007.pdf.
Priorities: This notice contains one absolute priority, two competitive preference priorities, and one invitational priority. The absolute priority is from the Department's notice of final supplemental priorities and definitions for discretionary grant programs (Supplemental Priorities), published in the Federal Register on December 10, 2014 (79 FR 73425). Competitive Preference Priority 1 is from section 320(c)(2)(H) of the Higher Education Act of 1965, as amended (HEA). Competitive Preference Priority 2 is from the Supplemental Priorities.
Absolute Priority: For FY 2015 and any subsequent year in which we make awards from the list of unfunded applicants from this competition, this priority is an absolute priority. Under 34 CFR 75.105(c)(3), we consider only applications that meet this priority.
This priority is:
Projects that are designed to increase the number and proportion of high-need students (as defined in this notice) who are academically prepared for, enroll in, or complete on time college, other postsecondary education, or other career and technical education.
Competitive Preference Priorities: For FY 2015 and any subsequent year in which we make awards from the list of unfunded applicants from this competition, these priorities are competitive preference priorities. Under 34 CFR 75.105(c)(2)(i), we award an application up to three additional points for each priority, for a total of up to six additional points, depending on how well the application meets each of these priorities.
These priorities are:
Competitive Preference Priority 1 (up to 3 additional points).
Academic tutoring and counseling programs and student support services.
Competitive Preference Priority 2 (up to 3 additional points).
Projects that are designed to leverage technology through implementing high-quality accessible digital tools, assessments, and materials that are Start Printed Page 31589aligned with rigorous college- and career-ready standards.
Invitational Priority: For FY 2015 and any subsequent year in which we make awards from the list of unfunded applicants from this competition, 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 support activities that strengthen Native American language preservation and revitalization. Definitions: The following definitions are from the Supplemental Priorities and from 34 CFR 77.1 and apply to the priorities and selection criteria in this notice:
High-minority school means a school as that term is defined by a local educational agency (LEA), which must define the term in a manner consistent with its State's Teacher Equity Plan, as required by section 1111(b)(8)(C) of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965, as amended (ESEA). The applicant must provide the definition(s) of high-minority schools used in its application.
High-need students means students who are at risk of educational failure or otherwise in need of special assistance and support, such as students who are living in poverty, who attend high-minority schools, who are far below grade level, who have left school before receiving a regular high school diploma, who are at risk of not graduating with a diploma on time, who are homeless, who are in foster care, who have been incarcerated, who have disabilities, or who are English learners.
Logic model (also referred to as theory of action) means a well-specified conceptual framework that identifies key components of the proposed process, product, strategy, or practice (i.e., the active “ingredients” that are hypothesized to be critical to achieving the relevant outcomes) and describes the relationships among the key components and outcomes, theoretically and operationally.
In developing logic models, applicants may want to use resources such as the Pacific Education Laboratory's Education Logic Model Application (http://relpacific.mcrel.org/ resources/elm-app or http://files.eric.ed.gov/fulltext/ED544779.pdf) to help design their logic models.
Regular high school diploma means the standard high school diploma that is awarded to students in the State and that is fully aligned with the State's academic content standards or a higher diploma and does not include a General Education Development credential, certificate of attendance, or any alternative award.
Strong theory means a rationale for the proposed process, product, strategy, or practice that includes a logic model.
Applicable Regulations: (a) The Education Department General Administrative Regulations (EDGAR) in 34 CFR parts 75, 77, 79, 82, 84, 86, 97, 98, and 99. (b) The Office of Management and Budget Guidelines to Agencies on Governmentwide Debarment and Suspension (Nonprocurement) in 2 CFR part 180, as adopted and amended as regulations of the Department in 2 CFR part 3485. (c) The Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards in 2 CFR part 200, as adopted and amended in 2 CFR part 3474. (d) The regulations for this program in 34 CFR part 607. (e) The Supplemental Priorities.
II. Award Information
Type of Award: Discretionary grants.
Estimated Available Funds: $3,113,000.
Contingent upon the availability of funds and the quality of applications, we may make additional awards in FY 2016 from the list of unfunded applicants from this competition.
Estimated Range of Awards: $300,000-$400,000 per year.
Estimated Average Size of Awards: $350,000 per year.
Maximum Award: We will reject any application that proposes a budget exceeding $400,000 for a single budget period of 12 months. The Assistant Secretary for Postsecondary Education may change the maximum amount through a notice published in the Federal Register.
Estimated Number of Awards: 8.
The Department is not bound by any estimates in this notice.
Project Period: Up to 60 months.
III. Eligibility Information
1. Eligible Applicants: (a) An IHE is eligible to receive funds under the NASNTI Program if it qualifies as a Native American-Serving Nontribal Institution. At the time of application, IHEs applying for funds under the NASNTI Program must have an enrollment of undergraduate students that is at least 10 percent Native American, as defined as follows:
Native American means a person who is of a tribe, people, or culture that is indigenous to the United States.
At the time of submission of their applications, applicants must certify their total undergraduate headcount enrollment and that 10 percent of the IHE's enrollment is Native American. An assurance form, which is included in the application materials for this competition, must be signed by an official for the applicant and submitted.
To qualify as an eligible institution under the NASNTI Program, an institution must also be—
(i) Accredited or pre-accredited by a nationally recognized accrediting agency or association that the Secretary has determined to be a reliable authority as to the quality of education or training offered;
(ii) Legally authorized by the State in which it is located to be a junior or community college or to provide an educational program for which it awards a bachelor's degree; and
(iii) Designated as an “eligible institution” by demonstrating that it has: (A) an enrollment of needy students as described in 34 CFR 607.3; and (B) below average educational and general expenditures per full-time equivalent (FTE) undergraduate student as described in 34 CFR 607.4.
The notice for applying for designation as an eligible institution was published in the Federal Register on November 3, 2014 (79 FR 65197) and applications were due on December 22, 2014. Only institutions that submitted applications by the deadline date and that the Department determined are eligible may apply for a grant.
(b) A grantee under the Developing Hispanic-Serving Institutions (HSI) Program, which is authorized by title V, part A of the HEA, may not receive a grant under any HEA, title III, part A program, including the NASNTI Program. Further, a current HSI Program grantee may not give up its HSI grant in order to receive a grant under any title III, part A program.
An eligible HSI that is not a current grantee under the HSI Program may apply for a FY 2015 grant under all title III, part A programs for which it is eligible, as well as under the HSI Program. However, a successful applicant may receive only one grant.
2. a. Cost Sharing or Matching: This program does not require cost sharing or matching unless funds are used for an endowment.
b. Supplement-Not-Supplant: This program involves supplement-not-supplant funding requirements. Grant funds must be used to supplement and, to the extent practical, increase the funds that would otherwise be available for the activities to be carried out under the grant and in no case supplant those funds (34 CFR 607.30(b)).Start Printed Page 31590
IV. Application and Submission Information
1. Address to Request Application Package: Bora Mpinja or Don Crews, U.S. Department of Education, 1990 K Street NW., 6th floor, Washington, DC 20006-8513. You may contact these individuals at the following email addresses or telephone numbers: Bora.Mpinja@ed.gov; (202) 502-7629, Don.Crews@ed.gov; (202) 502-7574.
If you use a telecommunications device for the deaf (TDD) or a text telephone (TTY), call the Federal Relay Service (FRS), toll free, at 1-800-877-8339.
You can also obtain an application via the Internet using the following address: www.Grants.gov.
Individuals with disabilities can obtain a copy of the application package in an accessible format (e.g., braille, large print, audiotape, or compact disc) by contacting one of the program contact people 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 where you, the applicant, address the selection criteria, the absolute priority, the competitive preference priorities, and the invitational priority that reviewers use to evaluate your application. We have established mandatory page limits. You must limit the section of the application narrative that addresses:
- The selection criteria to no more than 50 pages.
- The absolute priority to no more than three pages.
- A competitive preference priority, if you are addressing one or both, to no more than three pages (for a total of six pages if you address both).
- The invitational priority to no more than two pages, if you address it.
Accordingly, under no circumstances may the application narrative exceed 61 pages.
Please include a separate heading for the absolute priority and for each competitive preference priority and invitational priority that you address.
For the purpose of determining compliance with the page limits, each page on which there are words will be counted as one full page. Applicants must use the following standards:
- A “page” is 8.5″ x 11″, on one side only, with 1” margins at the top, bottom, and both sides. Page numbers and an identifier may be within the 1″ margins.
- Double space (no more than three lines per vertical inch) all text in the application narrative, except titles, headings, footnotes, quotations, references, and captions and all text in charts, tables, figures, and graphs. These items may be single-spaced. Charts, tables, figures, and graphs in the application narrative count toward the page limits.
- 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, graphs, footnotes, and endnotes.
- Use one of the following fonts: Times New Roman, Courier, Courier New, or Arial. An application submitted in any other font (including Times Roman or Arial Narrow) will not be accepted.
The page limit does not apply to Part I, the Application for Federal Assistance (SF 424); the Supplemental Information for SF 424 Form; Part II, the Budget Information Summary Form (ED Form 524); and Part IV, the assurances and certifications. The page limit also does not apply to the table of contents, the one-page abstract, the resumes, the bibliography, or the letters of support. If you include any attachments or appendices, these items will be counted as part of the application narrative for purposes of the page-limit requirement. You must include your complete response to the selection criteria and priorities in the application narrative.
We will reject your application if you exceed the page limits.
3. Submission Dates and Times:
Applications Available: June 3, 2015.
Deadline for Transmittal of Applications: July 6, 2015.
Applications for grants under this competition must be submitted electronically using the Grants.gov Apply site (Grants.gov). For information (including dates and times) about how to submit your application electronically, or in paper format by mail or hand delivery if you qualify for an exception to the electronic submission requirement, please refer to section IV. 7. 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 aid 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: September 1, 2015.
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 competition.
5. Funding Restrictions: We reference regulations outlining funding restrictions in the Applicable Regulations section of this notice.
6. Data Universal Numbering System Number, Taxpayer Identification Number, and System for Award Management: To do business with the Department of Education, you must—
a. Have a Data Universal Numbering System (DUNS) number and a Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN);
b. Register both your DUNS number and TIN with the System for Award Management (SAM) (formerly the Central Contractor Registry (CCR)), the Government's primary registrant database;
c. Provide your DUNS number and TIN on your application; and
d. Maintain an active SAM registration with current information while your application is under review by the Department and, if you are awarded a grant, during the project period.
You can obtain a DUNS number from Dun and Bradstreet. A DUNS number can be created within one to two business days.
If you are a corporate entity, agency, institution, or organization, you can obtain a TIN from the Internal Revenue Service. If you are an individual, you can obtain a TIN from the Internal Revenue Service or the Social Security Administration. If you need a new TIN, please allow two to five weeks for your TIN to become active.
The SAM registration process can take approximately seven business days, but may take upwards of several weeks, depending on the completeness and accuracy of the data entered into the SAM database by an entity. Thus, if you think you might want to apply for Federal financial assistance under a program administered by the Department, please allow sufficient time to obtain and register your DUNS number and TIN. We strongly recommend that you register early.
Once your SAM registration is active, you will need to allow 24 to 48 hours for the Start Printed Page 31591information to be available in Grants.gov and before you can submit an application through Grants.gov.
If you are currently registered with SAM, you may not need to make any changes. However, please make certain that the TIN associated with your DUNS number is correct. Also note that you will need to update your registration annually. This may take three or more business days.
Information about SAM is available at www.SAM.gov. To further assist you with obtaining and registering your DUNS number and TIN in SAM or updating your existing SAM account, we have prepared a SAM.gov Tip Sheet, which you can find at: www2.ed.gov/fund/grant/apply/sam-faqs.html.
In addition, if you are submitting your application via Grants.gov, you must (1) be designated by your organization as an Authorized Organization Representative (AOR); and (2) register yourself with Grants.gov as an AOR. Details on these steps are outlined at the following Grants.gov Web page: www.grants.gov/web/grants/register.html.
7. Other Submission Requirements: Applications for grants under the NASNTI 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 NASNTI Program, CFDA number 84.031X, must be submitted electronically using the Governmentwide Grants.gov Apply site at www.Grants.gov. Through this site, you will be able to download a copy of the application package, complete it offline, and then upload and submit your application. You may not email an electronic copy of a grant application to us.
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.
You may access the electronic grant application for the NASNTI Program at www.Grants.gov. You must search for the downloadable application package for this competition by the CFDA number. Do not include the CFDA number's alpha suffix in your search (e.g., search for 84.031, not 84.031X).
Please note the following:
- When you enter the Grants.gov site, you will find information about submitting an application electronically through the site, as well as the hours of operation.
- Applications received by Grants.gov are date and time stamped. Your application must be fully uploaded and submitted and must be date and time stamped by the Grants.gov system no later than 4:30:00 p.m., Washington, DC time, on the application deadline date. Except as otherwise noted in this section, we will not accept your application if it is received—that is, date and time stamped by the Grants.gov system—after 4:30:00 p.m., Washington, DC time, on the application deadline date. We do not consider an application that does not comply with the deadline requirements. When we retrieve your application from Grants.gov, we will notify you if we are rejecting your application because it was date and time stamped by the Grants.gov system after 4:30:00 p.m., Washington, DC time, on the application deadline date.
- The amount of time it can take to upload an application will vary depending on a variety of factors, including the size of the application and the speed of your Internet connection. Therefore, we strongly recommend that you do not wait until the application deadline date to begin the submission process through Grants.gov.
- You should review and follow the Education Submission Procedures for submitting an application through Grants.gov that are included in the application package for this competition to ensure that you submit your application in a timely manner to the Grants.gov system. You can also find the Education Submission Procedures pertaining to Grants.gov under News and Events on the Department's G5 system home page at www.G5.gov.
- 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 upload any narrative sections and all other attachments to your application as files in a PDF (Portable Document) read-only, non-modifiable format. Do not upload an interactive or fillable PDF file. If you upload a file type other than a read-only, non-modifiable PDF 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.
- After you electronically submit your application, you will receive from Grants.gov an automatic notification of receipt that contains a Grants.gov tracking number. (This notification indicates receipt by Grants.gov only, not receipt by the Department.) The Department then will retrieve your application from Grants.gov and send a second notification to you by email. This second notification indicates that the Department has received your application and has assigned your application a PR/Award number (an ED-specified 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 Technical Issues With the Grants.gov System: If you are experiencing problems submitting your application through Grants.gov, please contact the Grants.gov Support Desk, toll free, at 1-800-518-4726. You must obtain a Grants.gov Support Desk Case Number and must keep a record of it.
If you are prevented from electronically submitting your application on the application deadline date because of technical problems with the Grants.gov system, we will grant you an extension until 4:30:00 p.m., Washington, DC time, the following business day to enable you to transmit your application electronically or by hand delivery. You also may mail your application by following the mailing instructions described elsewhere in this notice.
If you submit an application after 4:30:00 p.m., Washington, DC time, on the application deadline date, please contact one of the people listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT in section VII of this notice and provide an explanation of the technical problem you experienced with Grants.gov, along with the Grants.gov Support Desk Case Number. We will accept your application if we can confirm that a technical problem occurred with the Grants.gov system and that that problem Start Printed Page 31592affected your ability to submit your application by 4:30:00 p.m., Washington, DC time, on the application deadline date. The Department will contact you after a determination is made on whether your application will be accepted.
The extensions to which we refer in this section apply only to the unavailability of, or technical problems with, the Grants.gov system. We will not grant you an extension if you failed to fully register to submit your application to Grants.gov before the application deadline date and time or if the technical problem you experienced is unrelated to the Grants.gov system.
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 the Grants.gov system because—
- You do not have access to the Internet; or
- You do not have the capacity to upload large documents to the Grants.gov system;
- 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 Department, 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: Bora Mpinja, U.S. Department of Education, 1990 K Street NW., Room 6023, Washington, DC 20006-8513. FAX: (202) 502-7681.
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 84.031X), 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.
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 84.031X), 550 12th Street SW., Room 7039, Potomac Center Plaza, Washington, DC 20202-4260
The Application Control Center accepts hand deliveries daily between 8:00 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 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. Selection Criteria: The following selection criteria for this program are from 34 CFR 75.210. We will award up to 100 points to an application under the selection criteria; the total possible points for each selection criterion are noted in parentheses.
a. Need for project. (Maximum 20 points) The Secretary considers the need for the proposed project. In determining the need for the proposed project, the Secretary considers:
1. The magnitude of the need for the services to be provided or the activities to be carried out by the proposed project. (10 points)
2. The extent to which the proposed project will focus on serving or otherwise addressing the needs of disadvantaged individuals. (5 points)
3. The extent to which specific gaps or weaknesses in services, infrastructure, or opportunities have been identified and will be addressed by the proposed project, including the nature and magnitude of those gaps or weaknesses. (5 points)
b. Quality of the project design. (Maximum 25 points) The Secretary considers the quality of the design of the proposed project. In determining the quality of the design of the proposed project, the Secretary considers:
1. The extent to which the goals, objectives, and outcomes to be achieved by the proposed project are clearly specified and measurable. (10 points)
2. The extent to which the design of the proposed project is appropriate to, and will successfully address, the needs of the target population or other identified needs. (5 points)
3. The extent to which the proposed project is supported by strong theory (as defined in this notice). (10 points)
c. Quality of project services. (Maximum 10 points) The Secretary considers the quality of the services to be provided by the proposed project. In determining the quality of the services to be provided by the proposed project, the Secretary considers the quality and sufficiency of strategies for ensuring equal access and treatment for eligible project participants who are members of groups that have traditionally been underrepresented based on race, color, national origin, gender, age, or disability. In addition, the Secretary considers:
1. The extent to which the services to be provided by the proposed project are appropriate to the needs of the intended recipients or beneficiaries of those services. (5 points)
2. The extent to which the services to be provided by the proposed project Start Printed Page 31593reflect up-to-date knowledge from research and effective practice. (5 points)
d. Quality of project personnel. (Maximum 10 points) The Secretary considers the quality of the personnel who will carry out the proposed project. In determining the quality of project personnel, the Secretary considers the extent to which the applicant encourages applications for employment from persons who are members of groups that have traditionally been underrepresented based on race, color, national origin, gender, age, or disability.
In addition, the Secretary considers:
1. The qualifications, including relevant training and experience, of the project director or principal investigator. (5 points)
2. The qualifications, including relevant training and experience, of key project personnel. (5 points)
e. Adequacy of resources. (Maximum 5 points) The Secretary considers the adequacy of resources for the proposed project. In determining the adequacy of resources for the proposed project, the Secretary considers:
1. The extent to which the budget is adequate to support the proposed project. (3 points)
2. The extent to which the costs are reasonable in relation to the objectives, design, and potential significance of the proposed project. (2 points)
f. Quality of the management plan. (Maximum 15 points) The Secretary considers the quality of the management plan for the proposed project. In determining the quality of the management plan for the proposed project, the Secretary considers:
1. The adequacy of the management plan to achieve the objectives of the proposed project on time and within budget, including clearly defined responsibilities, timelines, and milestones for accomplishing project tasks. (10 points)
2. The adequacy of procedures for ensuring feedback and continuous improvement in the operation of the proposed project. (2.5 points)
3. The adequacy of mechanisms for ensuring high-quality products and services from the proposed project. (2.5 points)
g. Quality of the project evaluation. (Maximum 15 points) The Secretary considers the quality of the evaluation to be conducted of the proposed project. In determining the quality of the evaluation, the Secretary considers:
1. The extent to which the methods of evaluation are thorough, feasible, and appropriate to the goals, objectives, and outcomes of the proposed project. (5 points)
2. The extent to which the methods of evaluation include the use of objective performance measures that are clearly related to the intended outcomes of the project and will produce quantitative and qualitative data to the extent possible. (5 points)
3. The extent to which the methods of evaluation will provide performance feedback and permit periodic assessment of progress toward achieving intended outcomes. (5 points)
2. Review and Selection Process: We remind potential applicants that in reviewing applications in any discretionary grant competition, the Secretary may consider, under 34 CFR 75.217(d)(3), the past performance of the applicant in carrying out a previous award, such as the applicant's use of funds, achievement of project objectives, and compliance with grant conditions. The Secretary may also consider whether the applicant failed to submit a timely performance report or submitted a report of unacceptable quality.
In addition, in making a competitive grant award, the Secretary also requires various assurances including those applicable to Federal civil rights laws that prohibit discrimination in programs or activities receiving Federal financial assistance from the Department of Education (34 CFR 100.4, 104.5, 106.4, 108.8, and 110.23).
Awards will be made in rank order according to the average score received from a panel of three non-Federal reviewers.
3. Tie-breaker. In tie-breaking situations, we award one additional point to an application from an IHE that has an endowment fund of which the current market value, per FTE enrolled student, is less than the average current market value of the endowment funds, per FTE enrolled student, at comparable institutions that offer similar instruction. We also award one additional point to an application from an IHE that has expenditures for library materials per FTE enrolled student that are less than the average expenditures for library materials per FTE enrolled student at comparable institutions that offer similar instruction. We also award one additional point to an application from an IHE that proposes to carry out one or more of the following activities—
(1) Faculty development;
(2) Funds and administrative management;
(3) Development and improvement of academic programs;
(4) Acquisition of equipment for use in strengthening management and academic programs;
(5) Joint use of facilities; and
(6) Student services.
For the purpose of these funding considerations, we use 2012-2013 data. If a tie remains after applying the tie-breaker mechanism above, priority will be given to applications from IHEs that have the lowest endowment values per FTE enrolled student.
4. Special Conditions: Under 2 CFR 3474.10, the Secretary may impose special conditions and, in appropriate circumstances, high-risk conditions on a grant if the applicant or grantee is not financially stable; has a history of unsatisfactory performance; has a financial or other management system that does not meet the standards in 2 CFR part 200, subpart D; has not fulfilled the conditions of a prior grant; or is otherwise not responsible.
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); or we may send you an email containing a link to access an electronic version of your 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 of this notice.
We reference the regulations outlining the terms and conditions of an award in the Applicable Regulations section of 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: (a) If you apply for a grant under this competition, you must ensure that you have in place the necessary processes and systems to comply with the reporting requirements in 2 CFR part 170 should you receive funding under the competition. This does not apply if you have an exception under 2 CFR 170.110(b).
(b) 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 Start Printed Page 31594under 34 CFR 75.118. The Secretary may also require more frequent performance reports under 34 CFR 75.720(c). For specific requirements on reporting, please go to www.ed.gov/fund/grant/apply/appforms/appforms.html.
4. Performance Measures: The Secretary has established the following key performance measures for assessing the effectiveness of the NASNTI Program:
a. The percentage change, over the five-year period, in the number of full-time degree-seeking undergraduates enrolled at NASNTIs (Note: This is a long-term measure that will be used to periodically gauge performance);
b. The percentage of first-time, full-time degree-seeking undergraduate students at two-year NASNTIs who were in their first year of postsecondary enrollment in the previous year and are enrolled in the current year at the same NASNTI;
c. The percentage of first-time, full-time degree-seeking undergraduate students enrolled at four-year NASNTIs who graduate within six years of enrollment; and
d. The percentage of first-time, full-time degree-seeking undergraduate students enrolled at two-year NASNTIs who graduate within three years of enrollment.
5. Continuation Awards: In making a continuation award under 34 CFR 75.253, the Secretary considers, among other things: whether a grantee has made substantial progress in achieving the goals and objectives of the project; whether the grantee has expended funds in a manner that is consistent with its approved application and budget; and, if the Secretary has established performance measurement requirements, the performance targets in the grantee's approved application. In making a continuation award, the Secretary also considers whether the grantee is operating in compliance with the assurances in its approved application, including those applicable to Federal civil rights laws that prohibit discrimination in programs or activities receiving Federal financial assistance from the Department (34 CFR 100.4, 104.5, 106.4, 108.8, and 110.23).
VII. Agency Contacts
Start Further Info
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:
Bora Mpinja or Don Crews, U.S. Department of Education, 1990 K Street NW., 6th floor, Washington, DC 20006-8513. You may contact these individuals at the following email addresses or telephone numbers: Bora.Mpinja@ed.gov; (202) 502-7629, Don.Crews@ed.gov; (202) 502-7574.
If you use a TDD or a TTY, call the FRS, toll free, at 1-800-877-8339.
Applicants should periodically check the Department's Web site for the title III, part A programs for further information. The address is: www.ed.gov/programs/nasnti/index.html.
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 compact disc) on request to either of the program contacts listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT in section VII of this notice.
Electronic Access to This Document: 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 via the Federal Digital System at: www.gpo.gov/fdsys. At this site 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). To use PDF you must have Adobe Acrobat Reader, which is available free at the site.
You may also access documents of the Department published in the Federal Register by using the article search feature at: www.federalregister.gov. Specifically, through the advanced search feature at this site, you can limit your search to documents published by the Department.
Delegation of Authority: The Secretary of Education has delegated authority to Jamienne S. Studley, Deputy Under Secretary, to perform the functions and duties of the Assistant Secretary for Postsecondary Education.
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End Supplemental Information
Dated: May 29, 2015.
Jamienne S. Studley,
Deputy Under Secretary.
[FR Doc. 2015-13480 Filed 6-2-15; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4000-01-P