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Searchable Database of Out of School Time Programs in Indiana

  Approximately 30%, or roughly 332,642, of Hoosier children (including kindergarteners) are left unsupervised in the afternoons (Afterschool Alliance, 2010).  Indiana Afterschool Network (IAN) has been working to improve the quality of out-of-school time (OST) programs that serve children in the critical hours from 3-7pm. One of IAN’s key projects has been to create an online searchable database of OST programs across Indiana for families and community stakeholders to locate information.  Managed through a partnership between IAN and Indiana Association for Child Care Resource and Referral (IACCRR), the database includes OST programs that serve K-12 youth before school, after school, over the summer and during school breaks. As of April 2014, 711 OST service providers have registered their program in

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New Federal Grant Opportunity for Early Head Start and Child Care Program Partnerships

  As part of President Obama’s Early Learning Initiative, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has announced the availability of funds for the Early Head Start Expansion and Child Care Partnership (EHS-CCP) grant program.  The new grants are intended to expand access to high quality early learning opportunities for young infants and toddlers in poverty. Key facts about the grant program include the following: Eligible applicants for the EHS Expansion and EHS-CCP grants include: Current Head Start or EHS grantees Independent school districts Public and state controlled institutions of higher education Native American tribal governments (federally recognized) Public housing authorities/Indian housing authorities Nonprofits having a 501(c)(3) status with the IRS, other than institutions of higher education Private

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Department of Education Issues 15 Priorities for Discretionary Grant Programs

  The U.S. Department of Education (DOE) has proposed 15 new and revised supplemental priorities and definitions for use in discretionary grant programs.  The priorities frame the competitive grants that are annually released.  Rather than utilize individual program priorities, DOE intends for the 15 priorities to be used across all discretionary grant programs, thereby aligning new programs policy objectives. Early Education is the Department of Ed’s top priority. Research suggests that participation in high-quality early learning and development programs leads to improved school readiness for children in the short term, as well as higher graduation rates and income earnings in the long term. The second priority is given to the development of non-cognitive factors, which help to enhance student motivation

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New Federal Grant Opportunity for Charter Schools

  The U.S. Department of Education’s Charter Schools Program (CSP) has announced the 2014 CSP Grants Competition for Replication and Expansion. This program is designed to replicate or expand high-quality charter schools with demonstrated records of success.  CSP seeks to increase national understanding of the charter school model in two ways: To expand the number of high-quality charter schools available to students across the nation by providing financial assistance to initially plan, design and implement new schools. To evaluate the effects of charter schools on students, student academic achievement, school staff and parents. Funds awarded in 2012 provided a high-quality charter school education for 20,000+ students across 19 states and the District of Columbia, serving populations with 85% or more

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Grit: the New It Factor for Student Success

  What is the best predictor of student success? IQ? Family income? Out-of-school involvement? Standardized test scores? Researchers have been trying to figure out the answer to that question for decades. In fact, each of the suggestions above has been prominent ideas at one time or another. However, psychological researchers are now suggesting that the success predictor may be something completely different: “grit”. Grit has yet to become a household term, but it is being defined as something close to passion and perseverance for long term goals. It can be understood as a conglomeration of a number of commonly known traits and behaviors: goal-directedness, motivation, self-control, and a positive mindset. And while these character traits may be well-known (and perhaps

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Client Spotlight: Metropolitan School District of Washington Township

  Last month, Transform Consulting Group had the opportunity to work with the Metropolitan School District of Washington Township (MSDWT) in the development of their federal grant application for the School Climate Transformation Grant – Local Education Agency to improve school climate and behavioral outcomes for all students. In 2013, the President proposed a comprehensive plan, “Now is the Time,” to protect our children and communities by reducing gun violence, making schools safer, and increasing access to mental health services.   The School Climate Transformation Grant Program is one of several Federal programs designed to work together to help make schools safer and improve mental health services for students and young adults. Although schools have long attempted to address issues of discipline, disruptive and problem behavior, violence, and

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Early Learning Advisory Council (ELAC) 2014 Report to the Governor and Legislative Council

  On June 30, 2014, Indiana’s Early Learning Advisory Committee (ELAC) released its initial report to the Governor and Legislative Council.  ELAC was created as part of legislation passed during the 2013 session.  ELAC’s vision is to ensure that children ages birth to 8 years and their families have access to high quality early childhood education programs that keep children healthy, safe and learning. The eight members of ELAC are accompanied by over 120 volunteers serving in 7 ELAC workgroups, addressing specific aspects of this work.  The volunteers represent higher education, the business community, legislative and executive branch participants, not for profit organizations, and state employees – all of whom see enormous potential from wise investments in accessible, affordable, high quality early

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Pay for Success Federal Grant Opportunity

  The Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS) Social Innovation Fund is accepting proposals for the Pay for Success (PFS) grant.  PFS has a simple, yet fundamental goal: Find what works and make it work for more people.  PFS initiatives currently underway address key issues such as recidivism, workforce development, early childhood education, health interventions and chronic homelessness. PFS offers a financing solution that changes the way the government allocates and invests its resources, minimizing risk and maximizing return on taxpayer dollars. Basically, the government only pays for demonstrated results. External organizations and investors put up the capital for social services and are reimbursed only if outcomes are achieved. The PFS grant competition seeks to award nonprofit organizations, city

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New Framework for Family-School Partnership

  Children whose parents are involved in their education get better grades, are better behaved and have better futures. In other words, your involvement can make a big difference for your child today and tomorrow (Henderson and Mapp, 2002).  Building family-school partnerships take time and can be challenging.  Recognizing the importance of family engagement in student learning, the U.S. Department of Education has created the Dual Capacity Building Framework for Family-School Partnerships. This framework, best represented by the image here, is meant to provide schools and organizations with a logical model to follow in constructing, implementing, and assessing family-school partnerships. The model highlights the different foundational needs of family-engagement initiatives, the structural requirement needed by the school in order to

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2014 National Nonprofit Survey Results

  Recently, NFF released its 2014 State of the Nonprofit Sector Survey. Taken by over 5,000 nonprofit leaders from all over the United States, the survey gives a broad illustration on how nonprofits are operating and growing in today’s economy. Some of the key questions that the survey addresses includes: How does your nonprofit compare to other nonprofits? What challenges are other nonprofit leaders working to address? What are the current trends of nonprofits in America? The Nonprofit Finance Fund (NFF) can help you discover the answers. Interesting facts discovered from the survey include the following: 80% of nonprofits experienced increased demand for services Over half were unable to meet this demand in the previous year 31% of nonprofits are undergoing

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