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PA Bulletin, Doc. No. 01-78



Availability of Program Year 2001-02 Federal Even Start Grants for New and Expansion Family Literacy Programs

[31 Pa.B. 436]

   The Federal Even Start Family Literacy Program is authorized by Title I, Part B, of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA), as amended by the Literacy Involves Families Together (LIFT) Act. This program is administered by the Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE) for family literacy programs that will:

   1.  Target families living in areas of high concentration of poverty who are receiving welfare benefits and who have educational needs;

   2.  Enable communities to foster cooperative partnerships that build on existing community resources to create a new range of services; and

   3.  Provide services that are of sufficient intensity in terms of hours and of sufficient duration, to make sustainable changes in a family, and that integrate all of the following:

   a.  Interactive literacy activities between parents and their children;

   b.  Training for parents regarding how to be the primary teacher for their children and full partners in the education of their children;

   c.  Parent literacy training that leads to economic self-sufficiency; and

   d.  An age-appropriate education to prepare children for success in school and life experiences.

   Organizations eligible to apply for an Even Start grant include Local Educational Agencies (LEA) or Community-Based Organizations (CBO). Eligible entities are required to establish a formal partnership between one or more LEAs and one or more CBOs. Priority consideration will be given to applications that reflect the family focus of Even Start; locate new sites in areas designated by the Federal government as empowerment zones or enterprise communities; submit a total budget which contains a local match beyond the required Even Start statutory percentages; and target services to families most in need (that is, educationally disadvantaged adults who are receiving public assistance; do not have high school diplomas; are members of minority groups; are single parents; have children with developmental delays; reside in a Title I school attendance area; and [if in primary grades] are receiving Title I services). Priority will also be given to programs that are coordinated with adult education and literacy programs; county assistance offices; social service agencies; public libraries; Team PA Career Link One-Stop Centers; Workforce Investment Act (WIA) Programs; elementary schools; family centers; preschool programs such as Head Start; licensed child care centers; and other community groups or agencies that provide services and assistance to persons in need of basic literacy skills and/or support services.

   Special consideration will be given to Even Start Family Literacy Programs in the following order of priority:

   1.  Applications for Renewal of grants to currently-funded Even Start Family Literacy Programs, providing sufficient progress is made toward meeting program goals and objectives. Note: Even Start projects applying for their fourth or eighth year of operation should consult the application guidelines for special provisions pertaining to the duration of projects;

   2.  Applications for Expansion of existing Even Start Family Literacy Programs within the same county(ies) to new school districts or charter schools which receive Title I, Part A, ESEA funds, providing sufficient progress is made toward meeting program goals and objectives;

   3.  Applications for New Even Start Family Literacy Programs by school districts or charter schools receiving Title I, Part A, ESEA funds in unserved areas of counties not served by a current Even Start or State Act 143 grant; and

   4.  Applications for New Even Start Family Literacy Programs by community-based organizations, in partnership with school districts and/or charter schools receiving Title I, Part A, ESEA funds in unserved areas of counties not served by a current Even Start or State Act 143 grant.

   The ''Grant Period'' (or duration of an Even Start grant) will be for a term of 4 years provided that sufficient progress is made towards meeting program objectives. At the end of the grant period, grantees will be authorized to reapply and compete with other applicants for another 4-year term. Upon the completion of 8 years, special provisions apply to the continuation of program operations. Refer to the application guidelines for details.

   Restrictions placed upon the PDE for the administration of the Even Start grant:

   1.  The Federal program requires a local contribution/matching funds in addition to the requested grant amount. The total cost of the program is to be supported by grant funds and a ''local share.'' The Even Start statute requires a graduated increase in the local share, which ranges from 10% (in the first year) to 65% depending upon the year of operation (see application guidelines for details); and

   2.  Section 1204 of the Even Start statute prohibits a local program from using grant funds for indirect costs. This restriction includes the project's matching funds (local share).

   Even Start applications must be completed on-line and submitted via the e-grant website at to the Bureau of Adult Basic and Literacy Education, Pennsylvania Department of Education, on or before the following submission dates:

Even Start Family Literacy Renewal
March 9, 2001
Even Start Family Literacy New and
   Expansion Applications
April 3, 2001

   Instructions and the Application Guidelines are available via ABLE site at and via the e-grant website.

   Current grant recipients already have Master Agreements in effect that expire June 30, 2003, provided that sufficient progress is made toward meeting program objectives and program/fiscal reporting requirements. The agencies must execute a 2001-02 Program Year Rider W, to include a new budget and any changes to the application narrative in order to continue their funding. At the end of the grant period, grantees will be authorized to reapply and compete with other applicants for another multi-year term. These grants will be funded by Rider W to a Master Agreement executed between the Department of Education and the funded agency. Agencies not currently funded will be given instructions on execution of the Master Agreement once grant applications are accepted for approval.

   All potential applicants are urged to attend the proposal development workshop to learn the latest changes to program guidelines and new requirements for submitting e-grant applications for adult education and family literacy programs funded through (1) the Federal Workforce Investment Act, Section 231, (2) State Adult Literacy Program, Act 143 of 1986, and (3) the Federal Even Start Family Literacy Program. This workshop will be conducted by teleconference on January 30, 2001, 1 to 3:30 p.m. For the nearest downlink site and to ensure that space, materials and handouts are available, all attendees must register to attend by contacting the Distance Learning Center at (800) 236-5293 or for individuals who are hearing impaired, the Pennsylvania Relay Service (800) 654-5984 TTY can be used to call the Distance Learning Center. A follow-on, more detailed workshop will be conducted during Pennsylvania's Annual Adult Education Midwinter Conference, February 7-9, 2001, at the Hershey Lodge and Convention Center, Hershey, PA. The workshop will be conducted on February 8, 4 to 6 p.m. In order to ensure timely administra-tion and processing of e-grant applications, both the grant writer and the fiscal officer should attend the workshop.


[Pa.B. Doc. No. 01-78. Filed for public inspection January 19, 2001, 9:00 a.m.]

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