- Announcements: New projects, legislative alerts, calls to participate, and more
- The Resource Zone: NCSET and other national resources, including publications, videos, pocket guides, and more.
- What's Happening: Upcoming NCSET and other national events.
- Get Wired!: Web sites and listservs.
- Funding Forecast: Federal and other grant opportunities, as well as funding resources.
The latest news and information from around the country.
Assistive and Instructional Technology Supporting Children and Youth With Disabilities
Since 1999, the Family Center on Technology and Disability (FCTD), a project of Family Health International (FHI360), has been a source of information and resources on assistive and instructional technology for children and youth with disabilities. In partnership with American Institutes for Research (AIR) and PACER Center, FCTD is pleased to announce the launch of the Center on Technology and Disability (CTD). Funded by the U.S. Department of Education's Office of Special Education Programs, CTD will provide, through its online institute, a CTD Library, “Café,” and Learning Center.
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U.S. Department of Education Announces 2014 National Blue Ribbon Schools 337 Schools Honored–287 public and 50 private
U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan has announced the recognition of 337 schools – 287 public and 50 private– as National Blue Ribbon Schools for 2014 for their overall academic excellence or their progress in closing achievement gaps among student subgroups. These schools demonstrate that all students can achieve to high levels. The Department of Education will honor the schools at a recognition ceremony on November 10-11, 2014, in Washington, D.C. The award affirms the hard work of students, educators, families and communities in creating safe and welcoming schools where students master challenging content. The Department invites National Blue Ribbon School nominations from the top education official in every state, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, the Department of Defense Education Activity and the Bureau of Indian Education. The Council for American Private Education (CAPE) nominates private schools.
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The Resource Zone
Other National Resources
New REL Mid-Atlantic Report compares States’ Definitions of Alternative Education
The Regional Education laboratory (REL) of the U.S. Department of Education’s Institute of Education Sciences’ National Center for Education Evaluation and Regional Assistance has issued “How Do States Define Alternative Education.” This study provides an overview of similarities and differences in how states and state education agencies define alternative education, as well as which states have alternative education standards and what those standards entail. The most commonly cited target population for alternative education is students with behavioral problems. The most common services listed in state definitions and policies regarding alternative education programs are regular academic instruction, counseling, social/life skills, job readiness, and behavioral services (e.g., anger management, conflict resolution). The literature suggests that the definition of alternative education should include the target population, services offered, setting (e.g., in school, stand-alone schools), and scheduling (e.g., during school hours, outside of school hours). Available in pdf (509 KB, 40 pp).
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Other National Events
National Mentoring Summit
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January 28, 2015 - January 30, 2015
The 2015 National Mentoring Summit will bring together practitioners, researchers, corporate partners, government and civic leaders, national youth-serving organizations and the network of affiliate Mentoring Partnerships to explore and advance mentoring’s positive impact on individuals and communities. Deadline for Early Bird registration: October 3, 2014.
Federal Grant Opportunities
Forecast of Funding Opportunities under the Department of Education Discretionary Grant Programs for Fiscal Year 2014
This document lists virtually all programs and competitions under which the U.S. Department of Education has invited or expects to invite applications for new awards for fiscal year 2014 and provides actual or estimated deadlines for the transmittal of applications under these programs. The lists are in the form of charts organized according to the Department’s principal program offices and include programs and competitions previously announced as well as those to be announced at a later date.
FY 2014 Discretionary Grant Application Packages
This site, from the Department of Education, provides information on grant competitions that are currently open.
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Additional Funding and Award Opportunities
Lowe’s Toolbox for Education Accepting Applications for K-12 Public School Improvement Projects
Funded by the Lowe’s Charitable and Educational Foundation, the Lowe’s Toolbox for Education program provides grant awards of up to $5,000 to support school improvement projects at K-12 public schools in the United States. For the 2014-15 school year, the foundation will give priority to basic necessities, with a preference for funding requests that have a permanent impact, such as facility enhancement (both indoor and outdoor) as well as landscaping/cleanup projects. Projects that encourage parent involvement and help build stronger community spirit are encouraged. Any public K-12 school or nonprofit parent group associated with a public K-12 school is eligible to apply. Parent groups that are applying (PTO, PTA, etc.) must have an independent EIN and official 501(c)(3) status from the IRS. Groups without 501(c)(3) status should apply through their school. Grant requests must be between $2,000 and $5,000 per school. Deadline for submitting applications for the fall 2014 grant cycle: October 15, 2014. However, if 1,500 applications are received before the deadline, then the application process will close.
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