Office of Innovation and Improvement, Department of Education.
The Department of Education (Department) is issuing a notice inviting applications for fiscal year (FY) 2018 for the Assistance for Arts Education (AAE)—Assistance for Arts Education Development and Dissemination (AAEDD) Program, Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) number 84.351D.
Applications Available: May 1, 2018.
Date of Informational Webinar: For information about the pre-application webinar, visit the AAE website at: https://innovation.ed.gov/what-we-do/arts/arts-in-education-model-development-and-dissemination-grants-program/.
Deadline for Notice of Intent to Apply: May 16, 2018.
Deadline for Transmittal of Applications: July 2, 2018.
Deadline for Intergovernmental Review: August 29, 2018.
For the addresses for obtaining and submitting an application, please refer to our Common Instructions for Applicants to Department of Education Discretionary Grant Programs, published in the Federal Register on February 12, 2018 (83 FR 6003) and available at www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2018-02-12/pdf/2018-02558.pdf.
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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:
Bonnie Carter, U.S. Department of Education, 400 Maryland Avenue SW, Room 4W223, Washington, DC 20202-5960. Telephone: (202) 401-3579. Email: Bonnie.Carter@ed.gov.
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.
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Full Text of Announcement
I. Funding Opportunity Description
Purpose of Program: The AAEDD program, which is part of the AAE program, is authorized under title IV, part F, subpart 4 of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA), as amended by the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA).
In general, the purpose of the AAE program is to promote arts education for students, including disadvantaged students and students who are children with disabilities. The AAEDD program specifically supports the development and dissemination of accessible instructional materials and arts-based educational programming, including online resources, in multiple arts disciplines that effectively (1) increase access to standards-based arts education; (2) integrate standards-based arts education into other subjects; and (3) improve students' academic performance, including their knowledge and skills in creating, performing, and responding to the arts.
Background: The arts are included in the list of subjects in the statutory definition of a “well-rounded education,” the purpose of which is “providing all students access to an enriched curriculum and educational experience” (ESEA section 8101(52)). The AAEDD program builds on its predecessor, the Arts in Education Model Development and Dissemination (AEMDD) program, to include a focus on the development and dissemination of arts-based educational programming, including online resources, in all arts disciplines, such as music, dance, theater, and visual arts, including folk arts.
Certain activities that were supported under the AEMDD program may also be supported under the new AAEDD program, including but not limited to professional development for teachers and administrators, arts-based programming such as classroom support through the use of teaching artists, art specialists, and art therapists, and the development and dissemination of curricula, lesson plans, and software programs, such as mobile apps.
Priority: This notice includes one absolute priority. We are establishing this priority for the FY 2018 grant competition and any subsequent year in which we make awards from the list of unfunded applications from this Start Printed Page 19056competition, in accordance with section 437(d)(1) of the General Education Provisions Act (GEPA), 20 U.S.C. 1232(d)(1).
Absolute Priority: 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 develop, disseminate, and integrate high-quality, effective arts-based instructional materials and educational programming, including online resources, in multiple arts disciplines that (1) increase access to standards-based arts education; (2) integrate standards-based arts education into other subjects as part of a well-rounded education; and (3) improve students' academic performance, including their knowledge and skills in creating, performing, and responding to the arts.
Application Requirement: Applicants are required to provide, in the application, data from the most recent U.S. Census as evidence that the local educational agencies (LEAs) meet the statutory requirement that 20 percent or more of the students served by the LEA (or for each LEA within a consortium of LEAs) are from families with an income below the Federal poverty line.
Definitions: We are establishing the definitions of “arts” and “integrate” for the FY 2018 grant competition and any subsequent year in which we make awards from the list of unfunded applications from this competition, in accordance with section 437(d)(1) GEPA. The definitions of “child with a disability,” “local educational agency,” and “State educational agency” are from section 8101 of the ESEA (20 U.S.C. 7801). The definitions of “demonstrates a rationale,” “experimental study,” “logic model,” “project component,” “promising evidence,” “quasi-experimental design study,” “relevant outcome,” and “What Works Clearinghouse Handbook (WWC Handbook)” are from 34 CFR 77.1(c).
Arts includes music, dance, theater, media arts, and visual arts, including folk arts.
Child with a disability means—
(a) A child (i) with intellectual disabilities, hearing impairments (including deafness), speech or language impairments, visual impairments (including blindness), serious emotional disturbance (referred to as “emotional disturbance”), orthopedic impairments, autism, traumatic brain injury, other health impairments, or specific learning disabilities; and (ii) who, by reason thereof, needs special education and related services.
(b) For a child aged 3 through 9 (or any subset of that age range, including ages 3 through 5), this term may, at the discretion of the State and the LEA, include a child (i) experiencing developmental delays, as defined by the State and as measured by appropriate diagnostic instruments and procedures, in one or more of the following areas: Physical development; cognitive development; communication development; social or emotional development; or adaptive development; and (ii) who, by reason thereof, needs special education and related services.
Demonstrates a rationale means a key project component (as defined in this notice) included in the project's logic model (as defined in this notice) is informed by research or evaluation findings that suggest the project component is likely to improve relevant outcomes (as defined in this notice).
Experimental study means a study that is designed to compare outcomes between two groups of individuals (such as students) that are otherwise equivalent except for their assignment to either a treatment group receiving a project component or a control group that does not. Randomized controlled trials, regression discontinuity design studies, and single-case design studies are the specific types of experimental studies that, depending on their design and implementation (e.g., sample attrition in randomized controlled trials and regression discontinuity design studies), can meet What Works Clearinghouse (WWC) standards without reservations as described in the WWC Handbook (as defined in this notice):
(i) A randomized controlled trial employs random assignment of, for example, students, teachers, classrooms, or schools to receive the project component being evaluated (the treatment group) or not to receive the project component (the control group).
(ii) A regression discontinuity design study assigns the project component being evaluated using a measured variable (e.g., assigning students reading below a cutoff score to tutoring or developmental education classes) and controls for that variable in the analysis of outcomes.
(iii) A single-case design study uses observations of a single case (e.g., a student eligible for a behavioral intervention) over time in the absence and presence of a controlled treatment manipulation to determine whether the outcome is systematically related to the treatment.
Integrate means to strengthen (1) the use of high-quality arts instruction in other academic/content areas; and (2) the place of the arts as a part of a well-rounded education.
Local educational agency (LEA) means:
(a) In General. A public board of education or other public authority legally constituted within a State for either administrative control or direction of, or to perform a service function for, public elementary schools or secondary schools in a city, county, township, school district, or other political subdivision of a State, or of or for a combination of school districts or counties that is recognized in a State as an administrative agency for its public elementary schools or secondary schools.
(b) Administrative Control and Direction. The term includes any other public institution or agency having administrative control and direction of a public elementary school or secondary school.
(c) Bureau of Indian Education Schools. The term includes an elementary school or secondary school funded by the Bureau of Indian Education but only to the extent that including the school makes the school eligible for programs for which specific eligibility is not provided to the school in another provision of law and the school does not have a student population that is smaller than the student population of the local educational agency receiving assistance under the ESEA with the smallest student population, except that the school shall not be subject to the jurisdiction of any State educational agency (as defined in this notice) other than the Bureau of Indian Education.
(d) Educational Service Agencies. The term includes educational service agencies and consortia of those agencies.
(e) State Educational Agency. The term includes the State Educational Agency in a State in which the State Educational Agency is the sole educational agency for all public schools.
Logic model (also referred to as a theory of action) means a framework that identifies key project components of the proposed project (i.e., the active “ingredients” that are hypothesized to be critical to achieving the relevant outcomes) and describes the theoretical and operational relationships among the key project components and relevant outcomes.
Project component means an activity, strategy, intervention, process, product, practice, or policy included in a project. Evidence may pertain to an individual project component or to a combination of project components (e.g., training Start Printed Page 19057teachers on instructional practices for English learners and follow-on coaching for these teachers).
Promising evidence means that there is evidence of the effectiveness of a key project component in improving a relevant outcome, based on a relevant finding from one of the following:
(i) A practice guide prepared by WWC reporting a “strong evidence base” or “moderate evidence base” for the corresponding practice guide recommendation;
(ii) An intervention report prepared by the WWC reporting a “positive effect” or “potentially positive effect” on a relevant outcome with no reporting of a “negative effect” or “potentially negative effect” on a relevant outcome; or
(iii) A single study assessed by the Department, as appropriate, that—
(A) Is an experimental study (as defined in this notice), a quasi-experimental design study (as defined in this notice), or a well-designed and well-implemented correlational study with statistical controls for selection bias (e.g., a study using regression methods to account for differences between a treatment group and a comparison group); and
(B) Includes at least one statistically significant and positive (i.e., favorable) effect on a relevant outcome.
Quasi-experimental design study means a study using a design that attempts to approximate an experimental study by identifying a comparison group that is similar to the treatment group in important respects. This type of study, depending on design and implementation (e.g., establishment of baseline equivalence of the groups being compared), can meet WWC standards with reservations, but cannot meet WWC standards without reservations, as described in the WWC Handbook.
Relevant outcome means the student outcome(s) or other outcome(s) the key project component is designed to improve, consistent with the specific goals of the program.
State educational agency (SEA) means the agency primarily responsible for the State supervision of public elementary schools and secondary schools.
What Works Clearinghouse Handbook (WWC Handbook) means the standards and procedures set forth in the WWC Procedures and Standards Handbook, Version 3.0 or Version 2.1 (incorporated by reference, see 34 CFR 77.2). Study findings eligible for review under WWC standards can meet WWC standards without reservations, meet WWC standards with reservations, or not meet WWC standards. WWC practice guides and intervention reports include findings from systematic reviews of evidence as described in the Handbook documentation.
Waiver of Proposed Rulemaking: Under the Administrative Procedure Act (5 U.S.C. 553) the Department generally offers interested parties the opportunity to comment on proposed priorities, application requirements, and definitions. Section 437(d)(1) of GEPA, however, allows the Secretary to exempt from rulemaking requirements regulations governing the first grant competition under a new or substantially revised program authority. This is the first grant competition for this program under section 4642 of the ESSA (20 U.S.C. 7292) and therefore qualifies for this exemption. In order to ensure timely grant awards, the Secretary has decided to forgo public comment on the priority, application requirements, and definitions, under section 437(d)(1) of GEPA. This priority and these application requirements and definitions will apply to the FY 2018 grant competition and any subsequent year in which we make awards from the list of unfunded applications from this competition.
Program Authority: 20 U.S.C. 7291-7292.
Applicable Regulations: (a) The Education Department General Administrative Regulations in 34 CFR parts 75, 77, 79, 81, 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 as regulations of the Department in 2 CFR part 3474.
The regulations in 34 CFR part 86 apply to institutions of higher education only.
II. Award Information
Type of Award: Discretionary grants.
Estimated Available Funds: $14,000,000.
Contingent upon the availability of funds and the quality of applications, we may make additional awards in subsequent years from the list of unfunded applications from this competition.
Estimated Range of Awards: $525,000-$625,000 per project year.
Estimated Average Size of Awards: $575,000 per project year.
Estimated Number of Awards: 20-25.
The Department is not bound by any estimates in this notice.
Project Period: Up to 48 months, depending on the availability of funds.
III. Eligibility Information
1. Eligible Applicants: (1) An LEA or consortium of LEAs in which 20 percent or more of the students served by the LEA or LEAs within the consortium are from families with an income below the Federal poverty line 
(including a public charter school that meets the definition of LEA in section 8101(30) of the ESEA) (eligible LEA), and that may work in partnership with one or more of the following:
(a) An SEA;
(b) An institution of higher education;
(c) The Bureau of Indian Education; or
(d) A museum or cultural institution, or another private agency, institution, organization.
(2) An SEA; an institution of higher education; a museum or cultural institution; Bureau of Indian Education; or private agency, institution, or organization, that must partner with an eligible LEA, and that may partner with another eligible entity.
2. a. Cost Sharing or Matching: This program does not require cost sharing or matching.
b. Supplement-Not-Supplant: This program involves supplement-not-supplant funding requirements. In accordance with section 4624(b) of the ESEA, funds made available under this subpart must be used to supplement, and not supplant, non-Federal funds that would otherwise be used for activities authorized under this subpart.
3. Coordination Requirement: In accordance with section 4642(b) of the ESEA, grantees are required to coordinate, to the extent practicable, each project or program carried out with such assistance with appropriate activities of public or private cultural agencies, institutions, and organizations, including museums, arts education associations, libraries, and theaters, and to use such assistance only to supplement, and not to supplant, any other assistance or funds made available from non-Federal sources for the activities assisted under this program.Start Printed Page 19058
IV. Application and Submission Information
1. Application Submission Instructions: For information on how to submit an application please refer to our Common Instructions for Applicants to Department of Education Discretionary Grant Programs, published in the Federal Register on February 12, 2018 (83 FR 6003) and available at www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2018-02-12/pdf/2018-02558.pdf.
2. Submission of Proprietary Information: Given the types of projects that may be proposed in applications for the AAEDD program, your application may include business information that you consider proprietary. In 34 CFR 5.11 we define “business information” and describe the process we use in determining whether any of that information is proprietary and, thus, protected from disclosure under Exemption 4 of the Freedom of Information Act (5 U.S.C. 552, as amended).
Because we plan to make successful applications available to the public, you may wish to request confidentiality of business information.
Consistent with Executive Order 12600, please designate in your application any information that you believe is exempt from disclosure under Exemption 4. In the appropriate Appendix section of your application, under “Other Attachments Form,” please list the page number or numbers on which we can find this information. For additional information please see 34 CFR 5.11(c).
3. Intergovernmental Review: This competition 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.
4. Funding Restrictions: We reference regulations outlining funding restrictions in the Applicable Regulations section of this notice.
5. Recommended Page Limit: The application narrative is where you, the applicant, address the selection criteria that reviewers use to evaluate your application. We recommend that you (1) limit the application narrative to 50 pages and (2) 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.
- Double space (no more than three lines per vertical inch) all text in the application narrative, including titles, headings, footnotes, quotations, references, and captions, as well as all text in charts, tables, figures, and graphs.
- Use a font that is either 12 point or larger or no smaller than 10 pitch (characters per inch).
- Use one of the following fonts: Times New Roman, Courier, Courier New, or Arial.
V. Application Review Information
1. Selection Criteria: The selection criteria for this competition are from 34 CFR 75.210. An applicant may earn up to a total of 100 points based on the selection criteria. The maximum score for each criterion is indicated in parentheses. The criteria are as follows:
A. Significance (25 points). The Secretary considers the significance of the proposed project. In determining the significance of the proposed project, the Secretary considers the following factors:
(1) The significance of the problem or issue to be addressed by the proposed project.
(2) The extent to which the results of the proposed project are to be disseminated in ways that will enable others to use the information or strategies.
(3) The importance or magnitude of the results or outcomes likely to be attained by the proposed project, especially improvements in teaching and student achievement.
B. Quality of the Project Design (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 the following factors:
(1) The extent to which the proposed project is part of a comprehensive effort to improve teaching and learning and support rigorous academic standards for students.
(2) The extent to which the proposed project demonstrates a rationale (as defined in 34 CFR 77.1(c)).
(3) The extent to which the design for implementing and evaluating the proposed project will result in information to guide possible replication of project activities or strategies, including information about the effectiveness of the approach or strategies employed by the project.
(4) The extent to which the proposed project is designed to build capacity and yield results that will extend beyond the period of Federal financial assistance.
C. Quality of Project Personnel (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 the following factors:
(1) The qualifications, including relevant training and experience, of key project personnel.
(2) The qualifications, including relevant training and experience, of project consultants or subcontractors.
D. Quality of the Management Plan (20 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 the following factors:
(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.
(2) The adequacy of mechanisms for ensuring high-quality products and services from the proposed project.
(3) The extent to which the time commitments of the project director and principal investigator and other key project personnel are appropriate and adequate to meet the objectives of the proposed project.
E. Quality of the Project Evaluation (20 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 the following factors:
(1) 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.
(2) The extent to which the methods of evaluation will provide performance feedback and permit periodic assessment of progress toward achieving intended outcomes.
(3) The extent to which the methods of evaluation will, if well implemented, produce promising evidence (as defined in 34 CFR 77.1(c)) about the project's effectiveness.
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 Start Printed Page 19059award, 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 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 (34 CFR 100.4, 104.5, 106.4, 108.8, and 110.23).
3. Risk Assessment and Specific Conditions: Consistent with 2 CFR 200.205, before awarding grants under this competition the Department conducts a review of the risks posed by applicants. Under 2 CFR 3474.10, the Secretary may impose specific 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.
4. Integrity and Performance System: If you are selected under this competition to receive an award that over the course of the project period may exceed the simplified acquisition threshold (currently $150,000), under 2 CFR 200.205(a)(2), we must make a judgment about your integrity, business ethics, and record of performance under Federal awards—that is, the risk posed by you as an applicant—before we make an award. In doing so, we must consider any information about you that is in the integrity and performance system (currently referred to as the Federal Awardee Performance and Integrity Information System (FAPIIS)), accessible through the System for Award Management. You may review and comment on any information about yourself that a Federal agency previously entered and that is currently in FAPIIS.
Please note that, if the total value of your currently active grants, cooperative agreements, and procurement contracts from the Federal Government exceeds $10,000,000, the reporting requirements in 2 CFR part 200, Appendix XII, require you to report certain integrity information to FAPIIS semiannually. Please review the requirements in 2 CFR part 200, Appendix XII, if this grant plus all the other Federal funds you receive exceed $10,000,000.
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. Open Licensing Requirements: Unless an exception applies, if you are awarded a grant under this competition, you will be required to openly license to the public grant deliverables created in whole, or in part, with Department grant funds. When the deliverable consists of modifications to pre-existing works, the license extends only to those modifications that can be separately identified and only to the extent that open licensing is permitted under the terms of any licenses or other legal restrictions on the use of pre-existing works. Additionally, a grantee or subgrantee that is awarded competitive grant funds must have a plan to disseminate these public grant deliverables. This dissemination plan can be developed and submitted after your application has been reviewed and selected for funding. For additional information on the open licensing requirements please refer to 2 CFR 3474.20.
4. 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 multiyear 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. 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.
(c) Under 34 CFR 75.250(b), the Secretary may provide a grantee with additional funding for data collection analysis and reporting. In this case the Secretary establishes a data collection period.
5. Performance Measures: We have established the following performance measures for the AAEDD program: (1) The percentage of students participating in arts model projects funded through the AAEDD program who demonstrate proficiency in mathematics compared to those in control or comparison groups; (2) the percentage of students participating in arts model projects who demonstrate proficiency in reading compared to those in control or comparison groups; and (3) the number of accessible, arts-based instructional materials that are developed. Grantees will report annually on each measure.
6. 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. 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 the program contact person listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT.
Electronic Access to This Document: The official version of this document is the document published in the Federal Register. You may access the official edition of the Federal Register and the Code of Federal Regulations via the Start Printed Page 19060Federal 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 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.
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Acting Assistant Deputy Secretary for Innovation and Improvement.
[FR Doc. 2018-09215 Filed 4-30-18; 8:45 am]
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