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TEA Correspondence

A Microsoft Word version of this letter is available for download and PRINTING.

Notice of Waiver Request
and Opportunity to Comment

September 24, 2010

TO THE ADMINISTRATOR ADDRESSED:

SUBJECT:        Waiver Request to U. S. Department of Education
                        Extension of Period of Availability of Fiscal Year 2008 Section 1003(g) Funds

Texas’ federal Fiscal Year (FY) 2008 funds under the School Improvement Grants (SIG) program under section 1003(g) of  the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (ESEA) must be obligated by September 30, 2010.  Currently, Texas has approximately $8,500,000 in unobligated/unexpended FY 2008 SIG funds.  A portion of these funds remain unobligated because of the changes in the SIG grant implemented by the U.S. Department of Education (USDE) which caused grantees to not receive their expected Year 3 SIP Academy grant funding.  Due to the LEAs not receiving their anticipated Year 3 funding, much of the carryover from Year 2 grants was not expended. 

The Texas Education Agency (TEA) does not anticipate being able to obligate these funds in a thoughtful manner that will increase the quality of instruction and academic performance for students prior to the September 30, 2010, deadline.  USDE has invited states to submit this type of waiver request, and TEA is, therefore, requesting a waiver to USDE to extend the period of availability of the funds for an additional 24 months.

As required by USDE, if the waiver request is approved, TEA will combine the remaining federal FY 2008 SIG funds with its 2010 SIG funds and the FY 2009 SIG funds that it carried over,and use the combined funds to make FY 2010 SIG awards consistent with the SIG final requirements.  TEA believes that receiving this waiver will enable it to use FY 2008 funds to make SIG awards that will allow its LEAs to support the implementation of required school intervention models in additional Tier I and Tier II schools.  These funds will help increase the quality of instruction and improve the academic achievement of students in these schools by supporting rigorous reforms.  TEA will hold each LEA that receives FY 2008 SIG funds accountable in accordance with the annual goals that the LEA includes in its FY 2010 SIG application.

TEA is providing notice of its intent to apply to USDE for this waiver by posting this letter to LEAs on the TEA web site and disseminating it through the TEA “To the Administrator Addressed” electronic mail list server.  You may submit comments regarding this waiver application through 5pm CST, October 1, 2010, by facsimile to (512) 463-3133 or via electronic mail to nclbttips@tea.state.tx.us.

In addition to the web posting, TEA will also provide notice and information regarding this waiver request to the public by publishing a notice in the Texas Register in the near future.

To ensure that the Texas obligates future funds in a timely manner, TEA will conduct the requisite competitive discretionary grant process to allocate the SIG funding in a timely manner as soon as the state receives approval of its FY 2010 application from USDE.  As long as the USDE does not change the grant requirements, as previously was done with the FY 2009 funds which caused this unexpended balance of carryover funds, it is not expected that another similar waiver to extend the period of availability for this funding would be needed again in the future.

If you have questions regarding this waiver request, please contact Ms. Dorothy White via electronic mail at dorothy.white@tea.state.tx.us or at (512) 463-9374. 

Sincerely,

Cory Green, Senior Director
Division of NCLB Program Coordination

 

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