[Federal Register Volume 86, Number 135 (Monday, July 19, 2021)]
[Notices]
[Pages 38055-38060]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2021-15365]


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DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION


Applications for New Awards--American History and Civics 
Education National Activities Program

AGENCY: Office of Elementary and Secondary Education, Department of 
Education.

ACTION: Notice.

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SUMMARY: The Department of Education (Department) is issuing a notice 
inviting applications for fiscal year (FY) 2021 for the American 
History and Civics Education National Activities (AHC-NA) Program, 
Assistance Listing Number 84.422B. This notice relates to the approved 
information collection under OMB 1894-0006.

DATES: 
    Applications Available: July 19, 2021.
    Pre-Application Webinars: The Office of Elementary and Secondary 
Education intends to post pre-recorded informational webinars designed 
to provide technical assistance to interested applicants for grants 
under the AHC-NA program. These informational webinars will be 
available on the AHC-NA web page shortly after this notice is published 
in the Federal Register at https://oese.ed.gov/offices/office-of-discretionary-grants-support-services/effective-educator-development-programs/national-activities-grant/.
    Note: For potential grantees new or unfamiliar with grantmaking at 
the Department, please consult our funding basics resource at 
www2.ed.gov/documents/funding-101/funding-101-basics.pdf or a more 
detailed resource at www2.ed.gov/documents/funding-101/funding-101.pdf.
    Deadline for Notice of Intent to Apply: August 18, 2021.
    Deadline for Transmittal of Applications: August 18, 2021.
    Deadline for Intergovernmental Review: October 4, 2021.

ADDRESSES: 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 13, 2019 (84 FR 3768), and available at 
www.govinfo.gov/content/pkg/FR-2019-02-13/pdf/2019-02206.pdf.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Christine Miller, U.S. Department of 
Education, 400 Maryland Avenue SW, Room 3C152, Washington, DC 20202-
5960. Telephone: (202) 260-7350. Email: [email protected].
    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.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Full Text of Announcement

I. Funding Opportunity Description

    Purpose of Program: The purpose of this program is to promote new 
and existing evidence-based strategies to encourage innovative American 
history, civics and government, and geography instruction, learning 
strategies, and professional development activities and programs for 
teachers, principals, or other school leaders, particularly such 
instruction, strategies, activities, and programs that benefit students 
from low-income backgrounds and other underserved populations.
    Background: The AHC-NA Program seeks to promote evidence-based 
approaches that encourage innovative American history and civics 
education. In particular, the program seeks to promote strategies, 
activities, and programs that benefit students from low-income 
backgrounds and other underserved populations. This program is 
authorized under section 2233 of the Elementary and Secondary Education 
Act of 1965, as amended (ESEA).
    This competition includes one absolute priority, one competitive 
preference priority, and two invitational priorities. Consistent with 
section 2233 of the ESEA, the absolute priority addresses innovative 
instruction or professional development in American history, civics and 
government, and geography, and the competitive preference priority 
encourages applicants to propose projects that incorporate the use of 
hands-on civic engagement activities for teachers and students or 
programs that educate students about the history and principles of the 
U.S. Constitution, including the Bill of Rights.
    The Department continues to process, review, and fully respond to 
the significant number of public comments received in response to the 
notice of proposed priorities published in the Federal Register on 
April 19, 2021 (86 FR 20348) (NPP). As a result, it is not possible to 
issue a notice of final priorities in time to use the priorities 
included in that NPP as competitive preference priorities for this FY 
2021 competition. Because the Department has not yet issued final 
priorities, we are using these proposed priorities as invitational 
priorities. Consistent with the use of invitational priorities across 
grant competitions, applicants are not required to respond to the 
invitational priorities, and applications that meet invitational 
priorities do not receive a preference or competitive advantage over 
other applications.
    The Department believes that teaching and learning practices that 
reflect the diversity, identities, histories, contributions, and 
experiences of all students promote academic and social-emotional 
development for all groups of students. To that end, Invitational 
Priority 1 reinforces that American history and civics education 
programs can play an important role in supporting teaching and learning 
that reflects the depth and breadth of our Nation's diverse history and 
the vital role of diversity in our Nation's democracy. This can be 
accomplished, in part, through teaching and learning environments that 
provide students with a full and accurate understanding of our Nation's 
history, expose students to a range of important civics topics and 
equip them with the skills needed to fully participate in civic life, 
enable students to see themselves and their histories in the learning 
experience, and empower students by developing their problem-solving 
and critical thinking skills.
    Accordingly, Invitational Priority 1 encourages applicants to 
incorporate practices that reflect the diversity, identities, 
histories, contributions, and experiences of all students into teaching 
and learning and create inclusive, supportive, and identity-safe 
learning environments.
    Invitational Priority 2 encourages applicants to foster information 
literacy skills, including critical thinking, and promote student 
engagement in civics education through professional development 
opportunities for teachers.
    The Department fully recognizes and respects that curriculum 
decisions are made at the State and local levels, not by the Federal 
Government, and does not mandate, direct, or control curricula through 
this competition. Rather, the Department, through this competition, 
seeks to encourage efforts to implement more effective, student-
centered teaching practices and professional development activities 
while promoting

[[Page 38056]]

learning practices that reflect the diversity, identities, histories, 
contributions, and experiences of all students to support enriched 
educational opportunity, equity, and success for all students.
    Priorities: This notice contains one absolute priority, one 
competitive preference priority, and two invitational priorities. In 
accordance with 34 CFR 75.105(b)(2)(iv), the absolute priority is from 
section 2233(b)(1) of the ESEA, 20 U.S.C. 6663. The competitive 
preference priority is from section 2233(b)(2) of the ESEA.
    Absolute Priority: For FY 2021 and any subsequent year in which we 
make awards from the list of unfunded applications 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:
    Innovative Instruction or Professional Development in American 
History, Civics and Government, and Geography.
    Under this priority, we provide funding to projects that are 
designed to develop, implement, expand, evaluate, and disseminate for 
voluntary use, innovative, evidence-based approaches or professional 
development programs in American history, civics and government, and 
geography. To meet this priority, a project must--
    (a) Show potential to improve the quality of teaching of and 
student achievement in American history, civics and government, or 
geography, in elementary schools and secondary schools; and
    (b) Demonstrate innovation, scalability, accountability, and a 
focus on underserved populations.
    Competitive Preference Priority: For FY 2021 and any subsequent 
year in which we make awards from the list of unfunded applications 
from this competition, this priority is a competitive preference 
priority. Under 34 CFR 75.105(c)(2)(i) we award up to an additional 
five points to an application, depending on how well the application 
meets this priority.
    This priority is:
    Innovative Activities for Civic Engagement. (up to 5 points)
    Projects that include one or both of the following--
    (a) Hands-on civic engagement activities for teachers and students; 
or
    (b) Programs that educate students about the history and principles 
of the Constitution of the United States, including the Bill of Rights.
    Invitational Priorities: For FY 2021 and any subsequent year in 
which we make awards from the list of unfunded applications from this 
competition, these priorities are invitational priorities. Under 34 CFR 
75.105(c)(1) we do not give an application that meets these 
invitational priorities a competitive or absolute preference over other 
applications.
    These priorities are:
    Invitational Priority 1--Projects That Incorporate Racially, 
Ethnically, Culturally, and Linguistically Diverse Perspectives into 
Teaching and Learning.
    Projects that incorporate teaching and learning practices that 
reflect the diversity, identities, histories, contributions, and 
experiences of all students and create inclusive, supportive, and 
identity-safe learning environments that--
    (a) Take into account systemic marginalization, biases, inequities, 
and discriminatory policy and practice in American history;
    (b) Incorporate racially, ethnically, culturally, and 
linguistically diverse perspectives and perspectives on the experience 
of individuals with disabilities;
    (c) Encourage students to critically analyze the diverse 
perspectives of historical and contemporary media and its impacts;
    (d) Support the creation of learning environments that validate and 
reflect the diversity, identities, and experiences of all students; and
    (e) Contribute to inclusive, supportive, and identity-safe learning 
environments.
    Invitational Priority 2--Promoting Information Literacy Skills.
    Projects that foster critical thinking and promote student 
engagement in civics education through professional development or 
other activities designed to support students in--
    (a) Evaluating sources and evidence using standards of proof;
    (b) Understanding their own biases when reviewing information, as 
well as uncovering and recognizing bias in primary and secondary 
sources;
    (c) Synthesizing information into cogent communications; and
    (d) Understanding how inaccurate information may be used to 
influence individuals, and developing strategies to recognize accurate 
and inaccurate information.
    Definitions: The following definitions apply to this competition. 
The definition of ``evidence-based'' is from section 8101 of the ESEA. 
The definitions of ``demonstrates a rationale,'' ``experimental 
study,'' ``logic model,'' ``moderate evidence,'' ``project component,'' 
``promising evidence,'' ``quasi-experimental design study,'' ``relevant 
outcome,'' ``strong evidence,'' and ``What Works Clearinghouse 
Handbooks'' are from 34 CFR 77.1.
    Demonstrates a rationale means a key project component included in 
the project's logic model is informed by research or evaluation 
findings that suggest the project component is likely to improve 
relevant outcomes.
    Evidence-based means an activity, strategy, or intervention that--
    (i) Demonstrates a statistically significant effect on improving 
student outcomes or other relevant outcomes based on--
    (A) Strong evidence from at least 1 well-designed and well-
implemented experimental study;
    (B) Moderate evidence from at least 1 well-designed and well-
implemented quasi-experimental study; or
    (C) Promising evidence from at least 1 well designed and well-
implemented correlational study with statistical controls for selection 
bias; or
    (ii)(A) Demonstrates a rationale based on high quality research 
findings or positive evaluation that such activity, strategy, or 
intervention is likely to improve student outcomes or other relevant 
outcomes; and
    (B) Includes ongoing efforts to examine the effects of such 
activity, strategy, or intervention.
    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 Handbooks:
    (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

[[Page 38057]]

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.
    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.
    Moderate evidence means that there is evidence of effectiveness of 
a key project component in improving a relevant outcome for a sample 
that overlaps with the populations or settings proposed to receive that 
component, based on a relevant finding from one of the following:
    (i) A practice guide prepared by the WWC using version 2.1, 3.0, 
4.0, or 4.1 of the WWC Handbooks reporting a ``strong evidence base'' 
or ``moderate evidence base'' for the corresponding practice guide 
recommendation;
    (ii) An intervention report prepared by the WWC using version 2.1, 
3.0, 4.0, or 4.1 of the WWC Handbooks reporting a ``positive effect'' 
or ``potentially positive effect'' on a relevant outcome based on a 
``medium to large'' extent of evidence, with no reporting of a 
``negative effect'' or ``potentially negative effect'' on a relevant 
outcome; or
    (iii) A single experimental study or quasi-experimental design 
study reviewed and reported by the WWC using version 2.1, 3.0, 4.0, or 
4.1 of the WWC Handbooks, or otherwise assessed by the Department using 
version 4.1 of the WWC Handbooks, as appropriate, and that--
    (A) Meets WWC standards with or without reservations;
    (B) Includes at least one statistically significant and positive 
(i.e., favorable) effect on a relevant outcome;
    (C) Includes no overriding statistically significant and negative 
effects on relevant outcomes reported in the study or in a 
corresponding WWC intervention report prepared under version 2.1, 3.0, 
4.0, or 4.1 of the WWC Handbooks; and
    (D) Is based on a sample from more than one site (e.g., State, 
county, city, school district, or postsecondary campus) and includes at 
least 350 students or other individuals across sites. Multiple studies 
of the same project component that each meet requirements in paragraphs 
(iii)(A), (B), and (C) of this definition may together satisfy the 
requirement in this paragraph (iii)(D).
    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 teachers 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, a quasi-experimental design study, 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 Handbooks.
    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.
    Strong evidence means that there is evidence of the effectiveness 
of a key project component in improving a relevant outcome for a sample 
that overlaps with the populations and settings proposed to receive 
that component, based on a relevant finding from one of the following:
    (i) A practice guide prepared by the WWC using version 2.1, 3.0, 
4.0, or 4.1 of the WWC Handbooks reporting a ``strong evidence base'' 
for the corresponding practice guide recommendation;
    (ii) An intervention report prepared by the WWC using version 2.1, 
3.0, 4.0, or 4.1 of the WWC Handbooks reporting a ``positive effect'' 
on a relevant outcome based on a ``medium to large'' extent of 
evidence, with no reporting of a ``negative effect'' or ``potentially 
negative effect'' on a relevant outcome; or
    (iii) A single experimental study reviewed and reported by the WWC 
using version 2.1, 3.0, 4.0, or 4.1 of the WWC Handbooks, or otherwise 
assessed by the Department using version 4.1 of the WWC Handbooks, as 
appropriate, and that--
    (A) Meets WWC standards without reservations;
    (B) Includes at least one statistically significant and positive 
(i.e., favorable) effect on a relevant outcome;
    (C) Includes no overriding statistically significant and negative 
effects on relevant outcomes reported in the study or in a 
corresponding WWC intervention report prepared under version 2.1, 3.0, 
4.0, or 4.1 of the WWC Handbooks; and
    (D) Is based on a sample from more than one site (e.g., State, 
county, city, school district, or postsecondary campus) and includes at 
least 350 students or other individuals across sites. Multiple studies 
of the same project component that each meet requirements in paragraphs 
(iii)(A), (B), and (C) of this definition may together satisfy the 
requirement in this paragraph (iii)(D).
    What Works Clearinghouse (WWC) Handbooks (WWC Handbooks) means the 
standards and procedures set forth in the WWC Standards Handbook, 
Versions 4.0 or 4.1, and WWC Procedures Handbook, Versions 4.0 or 4.1, 
or in the WWC Procedures and Standards Handbook, Version 3.0 or Version 
2.1 (all incorporated by reference, see Sec.  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 WWC 
Handbooks documentation.
    Program Authority: Section 2233 of the ESEA, 20 U.S.C. 6663.
    Note: Projects will be awarded and must be operated in a manner 
consistent with the nondiscrimination

[[Page 38058]]

requirements contained in the Federal civil rights laws.
    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.
    Note: 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: $2,150,000.
    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: $300,000-$500,000 per year.
    Estimated Average Size of Awards: $400,000 per year.
    Maximum Award: We will not make an award exceeding $500,000 to any 
applicant per 12-month budget period. The Department plans to fully 
fund awards made under this notice with FY 2021 funds.
    Estimated Number of Awards: 2-3.
    Note: The Department is not bound by any estimates in this notice.
    Project Period: Up to 36 months, with renewal of up to an 
additional 24 months.

III. Eligibility Information

    1. Eligible Applicants: An institution of higher education or other 
nonprofit or for-profit organization with demonstrated expertise in the 
development of evidence-based approaches with the potential to improve 
the quality of American history, civics and government, or geography 
learning and teaching.
    Note: If multiple eligible entities wish to form a consortium and 
jointly submit a single application, they must follow the procedures 
for group applications described in 34 CFR 75.127 through 34 CFR 
75.129.
    Note: If you are a nonprofit organization, under 34 CFR 75.51, you 
may demonstrate your nonprofit status by providing: (1) Proof that the 
Internal Revenue Service currently recognizes the applicant as an 
organization to which contributions are tax deductible under section 
501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code; (2) a statement from a State 
taxing body or the State attorney general certifying that the 
organization is a nonprofit organization operating within the State and 
that no part of its net earnings may lawfully benefit any private 
shareholder or individual; (3) a certified copy of the applicant's 
certificate of incorporation or similar document if it clearly 
establishes the nonprofit status of the applicant; or (4) any item 
described above if that item applies to a State or national parent 
organization, together with a statement by the State or parent 
organization that the applicant is a local nonprofit affiliate.
    2.a. Cost Sharing or Matching: This program does not require any 
cost sharing or matching.
    b. Supplement-Not-Supplant: This program involves supplement-not-
supplant funding requirements. In accordance with section 2301 of the 
ESEA, funds made available under this program must be used to 
supplement, and not supplant, other non-Federal funds that would 
otherwise be expended to carry out activities under this program.
    c. Indirect Cost Rate Information: This program uses a training 
indirect cost rate. This limits indirect cost reimbursement to an 
entity's actual indirect costs, as determined in its negotiated 
indirect cost rate agreement, or eight percent of a modified total 
direct cost base, whichever amount is less. For more information 
regarding training indirect cost rates, see 34 CFR 75.562. For more 
information regarding indirect costs, or to obtain a negotiated 
indirect cost rate, please see www2.ed.gov/about/offices/list/ocfo/intro.html.
    d. Administrative Cost Limitation: This program does not include 
any program-specific limitation on administrative expenses. All 
administrative expenses must be reasonable and necessary and conform to 
Cost Principles described in 2 CFR part 200 subpart E of the Uniform 
Guidance.
    3. Subgrantees: A grantee under this competition may not award 
subgrants to entities to directly carry out project activities 
described in its application.

IV. Application and Submission Information

    1. Application Submission Instructions: Applicants are required to 
follow the Common Instructions for Applicants to Department of 
Education Discretionary Grant Programs, published in the Federal 
Register on February 13, 2019 (84 FR 3768) and available at 
www.govinfo.gov/content/pkg/FR-2019-02-13/pdf/2019-02206.pdf, which 
contain requirements and information on how to submit an application.
    2. Submission of Proprietary Information: Given the types of 
projects that may be proposed in applications for the AHC-NA 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 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. Please note 
that, under 34 CFR 79.8(a), we have shortened the standard 60-day 
intergovernmental review period in order to make awards by the end of 
FY 2021.
    4. Funding Restrictions: We specify unallowable costs in 2 CFR 200, 
subpart E. We reference additional 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 no more than 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,

[[Page 38059]]

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.
    Furthermore, applicants are strongly encouraged to include a table 
of contents that specifies where each required part of the application 
is located.
    6. Notice of Intent to Apply: The Department will be able to 
develop a more efficient process for reviewing grant applications if it 
has a better understanding of the number of entities that intend to 
apply for funding under this competition. Therefore, the Secretary 
strongly encourages each potential applicant to notify the Department 
of its intent to submit an application. To do so, please email the 
program contact person listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT 
with the subject line ``Intent to Apply,'' and include the applicant's 
name and a contact person's name and email address.

V. Application Review Information

    1. Selection Criteria: The selection criteria for this program 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 addressing each 
criterion is indicated in parentheses.
    (a) Quality of the project design. (30 points)
    (1) The Secretary considers the quality of the design of the 
proposed project.
    (2) In determining the quality of the design of the proposed 
project, the Secretary considers the following factors:
    (i) The extent to which the proposed project demonstrates a 
rationale.
    (ii) The extent to which the proposed project represents an 
exceptional approach to the priority or priorities established for the 
competition.
    (b) Need for project. (20 points)
    (1) The Secretary considers the need for the proposed project.
    (2) In determining the need for the proposed project, the Secretary 
considers the following factors:
    (i) The magnitude or severity of the problem to be addressed by the 
proposed project.
    (ii) 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.
    (iii) The extent to which the proposed project will focus on 
serving or otherwise addressing the needs of disadvantaged individuals.
    (iv) The extent to which the proposed project is likely to build 
local capacity to provide, improve, or expand services that address the 
needs of the target population.
    (c) Quality of the management plan. (20 points)
    (1) The Secretary considers the quality of the management plan for 
the proposed project.
    (2) In determining the quality of the management plan for the 
proposed project, the Secretary considers the following factors:
    (i) 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.
    (ii) The adequacy of procedures for ensuring feedback and 
continuous improvement in the operation of the proposed project.
    (d) Quality of the project evaluation. (30 points)
    (1) The Secretary considers the quality of the evaluation to be 
conducted of the proposed project.
    (2) In determining the quality of the evaluation, the Secretary 
considers the following factors:
    (i) The extent to which the methods of evaluation will provide 
performance feedback and permit periodic assessment of progress toward 
achieving intended outcomes. (10 points)
    (ii) The extent to which the methods of evaluation will, if well 
implemented, produce promising evidence (as defined in this notice) 
about the project's effectiveness. (10 points)
    (iii) The extent to which the methods of evaluation provide for 
examining the effectiveness of project implementation strategies. (5 
points)
    (iv) The extent to which the evaluation will provide guidance about 
effective strategies suitable for replication or testing in other 
settings. (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 
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 
200.206, before awarding grants under this competition the Department 
conducts a review of the risks posed by applicants. Under 2 CFR 
200.208, the Secretary may impose specific conditions and, under 2 CFR 
3474.10, 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 
$250,000), under 2 CFR 200.206(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.
    5. In General: In accordance with OMB's guidance located at 2 CFR 
part 200, all applicable Federal laws, and relevant Executive guidance, 
the

[[Page 38060]]

Department will review and consider applications for funding pursuant 
to this notice inviting applications in accordance with--
    (a) Selecting recipients most likely to be successful in delivering 
results based on the program objectives through an objective process of 
evaluating Federal award applications (2 CFR 200.205);
    (b) Prohibiting the purchase of certain telecommunication and video 
surveillance services or equipment in alignment with section 889 of the 
National Defense Authorization Act of 2019 (Pub. L. 115-232) (2 CFR 
200.216);
    (c) Providing a preference, to the extent permitted by law, to 
maximize use of goods, products, and materials produced in the United 
States (2 CFR 200.322); and
    (d) Terminating agreements in whole or in part to the greatest 
extent authorized by law if an award no longer effectuates the program 
goals or agency priorities (2 CFR 200.340).

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 must extend 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: The Department has established the 
following Government Performance and Results Act of 1993 (GPRA) 
performance objective for the AHC-NA Program: Participants will 
demonstrate through pre- and post-assessments an increased 
understanding of American history, civics and government, and 
geography.
    For purposes of GPRA and Department reporting under 34 CFR 75.110, 
we will track performance on this objective through the following 
measure: The average percentage gain on an assessment after 
participation in the grant activities.
    We advise an applicant for a grant under this program to give 
careful consideration to this measure in conceptualizing the approach 
to, and evaluation of, its proposed project. Each grantee will be 
required to provide, in its annual and final performance reports, data 
about its performance with respect to this 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; whether the 
grantee has met the required non-Federal cost share or matching 
requirement; 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: On request to the program contact person listed 
under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT, individuals with disabilities 
can obtain this document and a copy of the application package in an 
accessible format. The Department will provide the requestor with an 
accessible format that may include Rich Text Format (RTF) or text 
format (txt), a thumb drive, an MP3 file, braille, large print, 
audiotape, or compact disc, or other accessible format.
    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 at: www.govinfo.gov. 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.

Ian Rosenblum,
Deputy Assistant Secretary for Policy and Programs Delegated the 
authority to perform the functions and duties of the Assistant 
Secretary, Office of Elementary and Secondary Education.
[FR Doc. 2021-15365 Filed 7-16-21; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4000-01-P