New Mexico Public Education Department: Community Schools Planning and Implementation Grants
The Community Schools Act provides a strategy to organize the resources of a community to ensure student success while addressing the needs, including cultural and linguistic needs, of the whole student from early childhood programs and voluntary public pre-kindergarten through high school graduation. The Community Schools Act partners federal, state, and local and tribal governments with community-based organizations to improve the coordination, delivery, effectiveness, and efficiency of services provided to students and families and to coordinate resources, in order to align and leverage community resources and integrate funding streams. Funds for community school initiatives shall be used to establish, expand, or support community school initiatives. Funds are awarded through planning and implementation grants, detailed further below.
Planning grants: One-time planning grants are available for each eligible public school to conduct an initial school and community needs assessment, identify community supports and services through an asset mapping process, and for the establishment of a community-wide leadership team and site-based leadership team. Planning grants will help prepare and support eligible public schools to implement the community school framework during the 2020-2021 school year.
Implementation grants: Implementation grants are available for each eligible public school. Implementation grants must address the four pillars of the community schools: 1) Integrated Student Supports; 2) Expanded and Enriched Learning Time and Opportunities; 3) Active Family and Community Engagement; and 4) Collaborative Leadership and Practices. Implementation of the community school framework may include the broader use of public school facilities in which school buildings become hubs of student and family supports.
Established community schools that have been implementing an evidence-based community school framework may apply for an annual implementation grant without having to first apply for a planning grant. However, established community schools will still be required to complete the application, provide documentation of a completed needs assessment and asset map, and provide documentation of an established community-wide leadership team and site-based leadership team. Each eligible and funded community school site will need to update the “Breakdown of Requested Funding Worksheet” and other applicable sections of the application on an annual basis.
Amount: A total of $2,000,000 is available in state funding for community school initiatives in New Mexico. Award ranges are dependent on grant type, as follows:
- Planning grants: Grants range up to $50,000 for a period of one year.
- Implementation grants: Grants of $150,000 each for a period of three years will be awarded. At the conclusion of the initial three-year grant period, applicants may apply for a renewal grant for one year in an amount determined by the New Mexico Public Education Department (PED), subject to availability of funding.
Eligibility: A school district, a group of eligible public schools (consortium of schools), or a single eligible public school that has a demonstrated partnership with the local community to establish, operate, and sustain the community school framework. A school district does not have to include all schools within the district in its application in order to be eligible for funding. It is possible that not all schools included in the school district’s or consortium of school’s applications will be funded.
An eligible public school means any of the following:
- A public elementary or secondary school that has a student body where at least forty percent of students are eligible for free or reduced-price lunch pursuant to the Richard B. Russell National School Lunch Act.
- A public elementary or secondary school that has been identified as a school for comprehensive support and improvement (CSI) or targeted support and improvement (TSI) under the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965.
- A public elementary or secondary school that has otherwise been identified by the state as in need of additional support. Schools in need of additional support are struggling in the areas of academic proficiency in English Language Arts, math and/or science, attendance, graduation rates, drop-out rates, and/or parent/family engagement.
Depending upon the demand for funding, priority for awards will be for schools identified as needing comprehensive support and improvement (CSI) and targeted support and improvement (TSI) under the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). If schools identified as CSI or TSI are part of the school district’s or consortium of school’s application and funding is limited, the CSI and TSI schools may be the only eligible applicants that receive funding.
Note: Refer to the planning and implementation grant solicitations for additional eligibility details.
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