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U.S. Department of Education: Skills for Success

Deadline: July 29, 2015

The Skills for Success Program supports Local Educational Agencies (LEAs) and their partners in implementing, evaluating, and refining tools and approaches for developing the non-cognitive skills of middle-grades students in order to increase student success. Grants provide funding for the implementation, evaluation, and refinement of existing tools and approaches (e.g., digital games, growth mindset classroom activities, experiential learning opportunities) that integrate the development of students’ non-cognitive skills into classroom-level activities and existing strategies designed to improve schools. As grantees implement projects, they must collect, analyze, and use data to improve their tools and strategies throughout the project period. Ultimately, grantees are expected to identify and validate scalable tools and approaches that can be used by educators of high-need middle-grades students across the country. In addition, we expect that these grants will help build the capacity of LEAs and their partners to conduct research and apply that research to school- and district-level practices. This program also encourages sustainable partnerships that can continue the use of effective tools and approaches beyond the grant period.

For the FY 2015 competition, applicants must address two absolute priorities:

  • Developing non-cognitive skills in middle-grade students: To support projects that implement, refine, and evaluate existing tools and approaches that encourage the development of non-cognitive skills for students in grades 5–8. Such tools and approaches may be designed to encourage the development of growth mindsets, resilience, and self-control, among other attributes. Applicants must demonstrate how their proposed approach would develop students’ non-cognitive skills and fit into existing school- or district-level improvement strategies. Projects will share their learnings with other LEAs.
  • Supporting high-need students: To support improve academic outcomes, learning environments, or both, for high-need students.

Amount: Approximately $2,000,000 is available for up to five awards, ranging from $400,000 to $600,000 per year. The project period is up to three years.

Eligibility: The following entities may apply: 1) A local educational agency (LEA); or 2) A LEA in partnership with a nonprofit, an institution of higher education (IHE), or other LEAs

Link: http://www2.ed.gov/programs/skillssuccess/index.html

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