[Federal Register Volume 86, Number 212 (Friday, November 5, 2021)]
[Pages 61193-61197]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2021-24361]



Applications for New Awards; Rural Postsecondary and Economic 
Development Grant Program

AGENCY: Office of Postsecondary Education, Department of Education.

ACTION: Notice.


SUMMARY: The Department of Education (Department) is issuing a notice 
inviting applications for fiscal year (FY) 2021 for the Rural 
Postsecondary and Economic Development (RPED) Grant Program, Assistance 
Listing Number 84.116W. This notice relates to the approved information 
collection under OMB control number 1894-0006.

    Applications Available: November 5, 2021.
    Deadline for Transmittal of Applications: December 6, 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 

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Kurrinn Abrams, U.S. Department of 
Education, 400 Maryland Avenue SW, Washington, DC 20202-4260. 
Telephone: (202) 453-7906. 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-


Full Text of Announcement

I. Funding Opportunity Description

    Purpose of Program: The purpose of the RPED Grant Program is to 
improve rates of postsecondary enrollment, persistence, and completion 
among rural students through development of high-quality career 
pathways aligned to high-skill, high-wage, and in-demand industry 
sectors and occupations in the region.
    Background: Rural students account for 9.7 million--about 19 
percent--of public elementary and secondary school students in the 
United States and face many challenges accessing postsecondary 
education.\1\ In fact, according to data from the National Education 
Center for Statistics, 29 percent of individuals from rural areas who 
are between the ages of 18 and 24 range are enrolled in higher 
education, compared to almost 48 percent of individuals in that age 
range who come from cities and 42 percent from suburban areas.\2\ For 
rural students, and particularly low-income rural students, barriers to 
accessing postsecondary education include difficulties related to 
accessing high speed internet, transportation, childcare, and 
healthcare; as well as challenges of experiencing poverty, food 
insecurity, and housing insecurity. These and other challenges may 
negatively affect rural students' ability to be academically 
successful.\3\ Many of these challenges exist as a result of geographic 
isolation, distance from services, and a lack of resources and 
institutions to support community members. Rural communities are often 
located in education deserts, which may limit students' exposure or 
convenient access to postsecondary institutions.\4\ Many rural students 
who do decide to attend college are first-generation students who lack 
sufficient college preparation in high school,\5\ and are unfamiliar 
with the inner workings of postsecondary institutions, including the 
college application process and how to finance a college education.\6\ 
These students may feel underprepared for higher education and 
typically face challenges once in college; many experience hurdles that 
leave them unable to complete their programs.\7\

    \1\ nces.ed.gov/programs/digest/d20/tables/dt20_203.72.asp?current=yes.
    \2\ nces.ed.gov/surveys/ruraled/tables/b.3.b.-1.asp.
    \3\ files.eric.ed.gov/fulltext/EJ1101249.pdf.
    \4\ files.eric.ed.gov/fulltext/EJ1193574.pdf.
    \5\ files.eric.ed.gov/fulltext/EJ1101249.pdf.
    \6\ files.eric.ed.gov/fulltext/EJ1193574.pdf.
    \7\ files.eric.ed.gov/fulltext/EJ1193574.pdf.

    Higher education attainment is correlated with greater 
opportunities for careers, higher individual lifetime earnings, and a 
better quality of life, and is seen to contribute to the overall well-
being of society.\8\ Therefore, it is critical to undertake efforts to 
better prepare students in rural communities for the changing needs of 
the current workforce, and to create a more skilled workforce that will 
attract better jobs and provide economic support to the community. 
However, institutions in rural communities must be given the tools to 
develop strategies and plans that best serve their population of rural 

    \8\ files.eric.ed.gov/fulltext/EJ1101249.pdf.
    \9\ files.eric.ed.gov/fulltext/EJ1101249.pdf.

    Rural postsecondary institutions are best positioned to enhance and 
develop programs that improve the preparation, support, and retention 
of rural students in higher education, and that help them to graduate 
from college and transition into in-demand and well-paying occupations. 
To this end, the RPED Grant Program is designed to support 
postsecondary enrollment and completion by addressing the challenges 
rural students face accessing postsecondary education that will prepare 
them for high-skill, high-wage, and in-demand occupations.

[[Page 61194]]

    Priorities: This notice contains one absolute priority and two 
competitive preference priorities.
    We are establishing these priorities for the FY 2021 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) 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 
    This priority is:
    Projects that Increase Postsecondary Access, Affordability, 
Success, and Completion for Rural Students.
    Projects that will serve rural students by--
    (a) Increasing the number and proportion of rural students who 
enroll in and complete postsecondary education programs through 
activities and strategies related to college preparation, outreach in 
rural communities, awareness of postsecondary options, recruitment of 
students from rural communities, support throughout the college 
application and selection process, and long-term college and career 
advising relationships with middle and high school students to support 
them through their transition to postsecondary education;
    (b) Supporting the development and implementation of comprehensive 
student success programs that integrate multiple services or 
initiatives across academic and student affairs, such as academic 
advising, structured/guided pathways, career services, student 
financial aid, transfer support from two- to four-year programs, and 
other wrap around services;
    (c) Supporting the development and implementation of high-quality 
and accessible learning opportunities for rural students that cater to 
their unique needs and geographic distance from postsecondary education 
institutions, and align with career pathways to high-need occupations, 
including learning opportunities that are accelerated; hybrid online; 
work-based; or flexible for working students;
    (d) Supporting the development or implementation of evidence-based 
strategies to promote rural students' development of the knowledge and 
skills necessary for success in the workforce and in high-need 
occupations, including career training that leads to good jobs in 
fields relevant to the regional economy, and to raise awareness of, and 
access to, paid internship, fellowship, apprenticeship, and job 
opportunities; and
    (e) Implementing a sustainability plan to maintain programs and 
services after completion of the grant.
    Competitive Preference Priorities: These priorities are competitive 
preference priorities. Under 34 CFR 75.105(c)(2)(i), we award up to an 
additional 10 points to an application, depending on how well the 
application meets these priorities. An applicant may address one or 
both of the competitive preference priorities. The point value for each 
priority is in parenthesis.
    These priorities are:
    Competitive Preference Priority 1--Supporting Access to Technology 
(Up to 5 points).
    Projects that are designed to promote educational equity and 
adequacy in resources and opportunity for rural students through 
student-centered learning models that provide access to technology and 
leverage technology to address learner variability (e.g., universal 
design for learning, competency-based education, project-based 
learning, or hybrid/blended learning) and provide high-quality learning 
content, applications, or tools.
    Competitive Preference Priority 2--Strengthening Cross-Agency 
Coordination and Community Engagement to Advance Systemic Change (Up to 
5 points).
    Projects that are designed to take a systemic approach to improving 
outcomes for rural students through the development of career pathways 
aligned to high-skill, high-wage or in-demand industry sectors and 
occupations in the region in partnership with regional economic 
development entities, workforce agencies, regional employers, or other 
relevant nonprofit organizations.
    Definitions: We are establishing the definitions of ``competency-
based education'', ``regional economic development entity'', and 
``rural area'' for the FY 2021 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) of GEPA. 
The definitions of ``demonstrates a rationale'', ``evidence-based'', 
``logic model'', ``project component'', and ``relevant outcome'' are 
from 34 CFR 77.1. The definition of ``universal design for learning'' 
is from section 101 of the Higher Education Act of 1965, as amended 
    Competency-based education (also called proficiency-based or 
mastery-based learning) means learning based on knowledge and skills 
that are transparent and measurable. Progression is based on 
demonstrated mastery of what students are expected to know (knowledge) 
and be able to do (skills).
    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 the proposed project component is supported by 
evidence that demonstrates a rationale.
    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.

    Note: In developing logic models, applicants may want to use 
resources such as the Regional Educational Laboratory Program's (REL 
Pacific) Education Logic Model Application, available at https://ies.ed.gov/ncee/edlabs/regions/pacific/elm.asp. Other sources 
include: https://ies.ed.gov/ncee/edlabs/regions/pacific/pdf/REL_2014025.pdf, https://ies.ed.gov/ncee/edlabs/regions/pacific/pdf/REL_2014007.pdf, and https://ies.ed.gov/ncee/edlabs/regions/northeast/pdf/REL_2015057.pdf.

    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).
    Regional economic development entity means an entity working to 
promote economic development in, or employing residents of, a rural 
area, which may include local boards (as defined in section 3(33) of 
the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act), Chambers of Commerce, 
and employers in the rural region covered by the grant.
    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.
    Rural area means an area that is characterized by locale code 41, 
42, or 43. Please refer to the NCES locale lookup map: https://nces.ed.gov/programs/maped/LocaleLookup/.
    Universal design for learning means a scientifically valid 
framework for guiding educational practice that--(a) provides 
flexibility in the ways information is presented, in the ways students 
respond or demonstrate

[[Page 61195]]

knowledge and skills, and in the ways students are engaged; and (b) 
reduces barriers in instruction, provides appropriate accommodations, 
supports, and challenges, and maintains high achievement expectations 
for all students, including students with disabilities and students who 
are limited English proficient.
    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, selection criteria, 
definitions, and other requirements. 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, and therefore qualifies for this 
exemption. In order to ensure timely grant awards, the Secretary has 
decided to forgo public comment on the priorities, requirements, and 
definitions under section 437(d)(1) of GEPA.
    Program Authority: 20 U.S.C. 1138-1138d; Departments of Labor, 
Health and Human Services, and Education and Related Agencies 
Appropriations Act, 2021, H.R. 7614, 116th Congress (2020); the 
explanatory statement accompanying H.R. 133 (Pub. L. 116-260).

    Note: Projects will be awarded and must be operated in a manner 
consistent with the nondiscrimination requirements contained in 
Federal civil rights laws.

    Applicable Regulations: (a) The Education Department General 
Administrative Regulations 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 as regulations of the Department in 2 CFR 
part 3474.

II. Award Information

    Type of Award: Discretionary grant.
    Estimated Available Funds: $9,900,000.
    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: $1,100,000 to $1,237,500.
    Estimated Average Size of Awards: $1,200,000.
    Maximum Award: $1,237,500.

    Note: The maximum award is based on a 3-year budget period. 
Applicants will need to prepare a multiyear budget request for up to 
3 years.

    Estimated Number of Awards: 8.

    Note: The Department is not bound by any estimates in this 

    Project Period: Up to 36 months.

III. Eligibility Information

    1. Eligible Applicants: For the FY 2021 grant competition in 
accordance with section 437(d)(1) of GEPA, the following are eligible 
applicants: Public and private nonprofit institutions of higher 
education (IHEs), as defined in section 101 of the HEA, with enrollment 
of at least 30 percent of students who attended high schools located in 
rural areas (as defined in this notice).
    2. a. Cost Sharing or Matching: This competition does not require 
cost sharing or matching.
    b. Supplement-Not-Supplant: For the FY 2021 grant competition and 
any subsequent year in which we make awards from the list of unfunded 
applications from this competition, this competition involves 
supplement-not-supplant funding requirements. This program uses the 
waiver authority of section 437(d)(1) of GEPA to establish this as a 
supplement-not-supplant program. Grant funds must be used so that they 
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.
    c. Indirect Cost Rate Information: For the FY 2021 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) of GEPA, a grantee's indirect cost reimbursement is 
limited to eight percent (8%) of a modified total direct cost base. 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 
    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. Intergovernmental Review: This program is subject to Executive 
Order 12372 and the regulations in 34 CFR part 79. However, under 34 
CFR 79.8(a), we waive intergovernmental review in order to make awards 
by December 31, 2021.
    3. Funding Restrictions: We reference regulations outlining funding 
restrictions in the Applicable Regulations section of this notice.
    4. 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, except titles, headings, 
footnotes, quotations, references, and captions.
     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.
    The recommended page limit does not apply to the cover sheet; the 
budget section, including the narrative budget justification; the 
assurances and certifications; or the one-page abstract. However, the 
recommended page limit does apply to all of the application narrative.

V. Application Review Information

    1. Selection Criteria: The selection criteria for this program are 
from 34 CFR 75.210. Applicants should address each of the selection 
criteria. The points assigned to each criterion are indicated in the 
parentheses next to the criterion. An applicant may earn up to a total 
of 100 points based on the selection criteria and up to 10 additional 

[[Page 61196]]

under the competitive preference priorities, for a total score of up to 
110 points. All applications will be evaluated based on the selection 
criteria as follows:
    (a) Quality of the project design. (Maximum 35 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 goals, objectives, and outcomes to be 
achieved by the proposed project are clearly specified and measurable. 
(Up to 10 points)
    (ii) 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. (Up to 10 points)
    (iii) The extent to which the design of the proposed project 
includes a thorough, high-quality review of the relevant literature, a 
high-quality plan for project implementation, and the use of 
appropriate methodological tools to ensure successful achievement of 
project objectives. (Up to 5 points)
    (iv) The extent to which the proposed project demonstrates a 
rationale (as defined in this notice). (Up to 5 points)
    (v) 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. (Up to 3 points)
    (vi) The extent to which the services to be provided by the 
proposed project involve the collaboration of appropriate partners for 
maximizing the effectiveness of project services. (Up to 2 points)
    (b) Quality of the management plan. (Maximum 35 points)
    (1) The Secretary considers the quality of the management plan for 
the proposed project.
    (2) In determining the quality of the management plan, 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. (Up to 10 points)
    (ii) The extent to which the costs are reasonable in relation to 
the number of persons to be served and to the anticipated results and 
benefits. (Up to 5 points)
    (iii) The adequacy of mechanisms for ensuring high-quality products 
and services from the proposed project. (Up to 5 points)
    (iv) The adequacy of procedures for ensuring feedback and 
continuous improvement in the operation of the proposed project. (Up to 
5 points)
    (v) 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. (Up to 10 points)
    (c) Adequacy of resources. (Maximum 10 points)
    (1) The Secretary considers the adequacy of resources for the 
proposed project.
    (2) In determining the adequacy of resources for the proposed 
project, the Secretary considers the following factors:
    (i) The adequacy of support, including facilities, equipment, 
supplies, and other resources, from the applicant organization or the 
lead applicant organization. (Up to 5 points)
    (ii) The relevance and demonstrated commitment of each partner in 
the proposed project to the implementation and success of the project. 
(Up to 5 points)
    (d) Quality of the project evaluation. (Maximum 20 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 
    (i) The extent to which the methods of evaluation are thorough, 
feasible, and appropriate to the goals, objectives, and outcomes of the 
proposed project. (Up to 10 points)
    (ii) The extent to which the methods of evaluation provide for 
examining the effectiveness of project implementation strategies. (Up 
to 10 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 
(34 CFR 100.4, 104.5, 106.4, 108.8, and 110.23).
    A panel of two non-Federal reviewers will review and score each 
application in accordance with the selection criteria and the 
competitive preference priorities. Award(s) will be made in rank order 
according to the average score received from the peer review.
    Tiebreaker. In the event there are two or more applications with 
the same final score, and there are insufficient funds to fully support 
each of these applications, the Department will use other information 
to select applications (34 CFR 75.217). The Department will apply the 
following procedure to determine which application or applications will 
receive an award:
    First Tiebreaker: The first tiebreaker will be the highest average 
score for the selection criterion ``Quality of the Project Design.'' If 
a tie remains, the second tiebreaker will be utilized.
    Second Tiebreaker: The second tiebreaker will be the highest 
average score for the selection criterion ``Quality of the Management 
Plan.'' If a tie remains, the third tiebreaker will be utilized.
    Third Tiebreaker: The third tiebreaker will be the highest average 
score for the selection criterion ``Quality of the Project 
    Fourth Tiebreaker: The fourth tiebreaker will be the highest 
percentage of students who attended high schools in rural areas.
    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 
    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 200.205(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

[[Page 61197]]

(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 
    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 the Office of Management and 
Budget's guidance located at 2 CFR part 200, all applicable Federal 
laws, and relevant Executive guidance, the 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 
    (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, 
    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 
    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.
    5. Performance Measures: Under the Government Performance and 
Results Act of 1993 and for purposes of Department reporting under 34 
CFR 75.110, the Department will use the following performance measures 
to evaluate the success of the RPED Grants Program.
    1. The number of rural students served by direct student services 
supported by the grant.
    2. The change in the annual enrollment rate at grantee institutions 
of rural students who are served by direct student services supported 
by the grant from one year to the next.
    3. The number of rural students served by direct student services 
supported by the grant that transfer to a four-year institution or 
obtain a degree or certificate of completion.
    4. The number of rural students served by the program who obtain a 
paid internship, apprenticeship, or employment.

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.

Michelle Asha Cooper,
Acting Assistant Secretary for Postsecondary Education.
[FR Doc. 2021-24361 Filed 11-4-21; 8:45 am]