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2016-17 Title I School Improvement Grant - Section 1003(a)
Reward School Dissemination Grants - 3rd Cohort

Grant Application Documents

Application in PDF PDF icon (255KB) | Application in Word Word document icon (91KB)

Purpose of Allocation

Section 1003(a) of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) requires that State Education Agencies allocate funds to Local Education Agencies (LEAs) to carry out the State's responsibilities under sections 1116 and 1117, including support for Reward Schools to mentor staff at Priority and Focus Schools, and refine and enhance the Reward School’s own best practices.


Only Title I Districts with Title I Schools identified as Reward Schools based on both the 2013-14 and 2014-15 school year accountability results are eligible to apply for this grant. Title I Districts must have submitted the 2015-16 Title I Supplement designating the Title I status for all schools. Non-Title I Reward Schools and Charter Schools are not eligible for this grant.

A list of Reward Schools is available here.

Title I Districts with Reward Schools that met the two year identification criteria must correctly report the Title I school status on the 2016-17 Title I Supplement. The districts must update their 2016-17 Title I Supplement reports online, and the Title I Office will review the data to confirm eligibility for these schools.

The Title I Supplement online form is available here. (Please do not submit hard copies.)


Each Title I Reward School District will receive up to $50,000 per Title I Reward School to support and enhance each respective designated Reward School’s best practices. These funds are available to support each Reward School’s activities that take place from 10/1/16 through 6/30/17. Budgets must outline the specific expenditures that will build upon each Reward School’s best practices. These expenditures may not exceed $50,000 per school.

Costs related to the selected NYSED dissemination activity must be paid in advance by the district (e.g., Purchase Order) and will be reimbursed upon completion of the required activity using existing Fiscal Guidelines for Federal and State Grants. This portion of the grant can be accessed during both the planning (8/1/16 – 9/30/16) and implementation phase (10/1/16 through 6/30/17), as long as the amount reimbursed for the selected NYSED dissemination activity does not exceed $25,000 per school.


In order to receive a Reward School grant, Title I Reward Schools must:

  1. Complete a Diagnostic Tool for School and District Effectiveness (DTSDE) Self-Reflection
    • A copy of the Self-Reflection must be included with this application. The Reward School must identify a rating for DTSDE Tenets 3 through 6, and provide evidence to support that rating. Each Reward School must use the appropriate DTSDE rubric.
  2. Make a commitment to complete one (or more) of the following dissemination activities during the 2016-2017 school year:
    1. Partner with the National Board Certified Teacher Program:
      • Reward Schools will recruit and select three to four teachers who are eligible and interested in completing the required coursework to become Nationally Board Certified as a teacher in their content/grade area.
      • This cohort of teachers will be required to complete two of the four components and be evaluated by the end of the grant period.
      • Selected teachers will commit to serve as panelists or presenters at two events sponsored by the Office of Accountability.
    2. Serve as a mentor site for Priority and Focus Schools Principals:
      • Reward Schools will serve as mentor sites for Priority and Focus Schools Principals. Priority and Focus Schools Principals will be paired with a Mentor Principal from a Reward School and will have an opportunity to fully immerse in a comprehensive mentoring program complete with a robust inter-visitation program that allows the Priority and Focus School staff to observe classrooms, common planning time meetings, feedback meetings between instructional coaches and teachers, feedback meetings between teachers and students and any institutionalized systems and structures that contribute to the successful functioning of the Reward School. Reward Schools Principals wishing to serve as mentors will serve in this capacity for a minimum of one year.
      • Principals of Reward School mentor sites must enroll in the National Association of Elementary School Principals (NAESP) National Mentor Training and Certification Program. The program is comprised of two parts:
        • Part I - Leadership Immersion Institute (LII)
          The 2 1/2 day Leadership Immersion Institute is the opening event of the program. The focus of this workshop is the mentoring process. Participants explore the theoretical foundations of adult development, adult learning, and mentoring. Once grounded in these theoretical foundations, the participants learn under the guidance of the LII training team various practical techniques and strategies for creating an effective mentoring relationship. Participants receive 15 continuing education or professional development units (CEUs/PDUs) for completing the Leadership Immersion Institute.
        • Part II - National Principal Mentor Certification Program (NPMCP)
          Upon completion of the LII, principals will transition into the nine-month Mentor-in-Training (MIT) internship. The process begins with the NYSED identifying and selecting a mentee who agrees to participate in the MIT program. Each month, the mentor and mentee interact (electronically or in person) for a total of 72 contact hours. The mentor reports his or her work to the coach who has been assigned to his or her team of MITs. Online chats or conference calls are also held monthly for mentors and coaches to discuss the mentoring process, lessons learned, and recommendations. A final project is completed regarding the mentoring experience.
    3. Serve as an advisor to support one Focus/Priority school principal
      • A Reward School Principal will serve on the State-led Integrated Intervention Team (IIT) team during a DTSDE review as an observer to develop an understanding of the support the school needs in order for the Reward School Principal to advise the Focus/Priority school principal. Participation will require that the Reward School Principal engage in DTSDE review events such as classrooms observations; grade level meeting observations; and conversations with students, teachers, and parents. The Reward School principal will have an opportunity to interview the Focus/Priority principal in order to understand the most pressing issues that must be addressed at the school.
      • After the completion of the DTSDE Review, the Reward School principal will serve as an advisor to the Focus/Priority school principal with regard to implementing the IIT’s recommendations, which are left with the school leader at the end of the review.
      • Principals selected as an advisor will be required to only complete Part I – LII of the National Association of Elementary School Principals (NAESP) National Mentor Training and Certification Program.
  3. All Reward School Grant recipients may be called upon to serve as panelists or presenters, related to their dissemination activity at a maximum of two (2) future DTSDE Institutes and/or Reward School Convening Sessions. Reward School leaders will be invited to participate as panelists or presenters to:
    • Share the respective systems and structures at their schools aligned to identified Statement of Practices (SOP’s);
    • Highlight their best practices as content area presenters; and/or
    • Share reflections of respective experiences in the one or more activities engaged in during the academic year as a Reward School leader.

Reward School funds can be used for the following:

Funds may only be used for activities allowed under Title I and must be used to support the following:

  1. Up to $25,000 to support NYSED required activities (Can be accessed during both Planning and Implementation Phases):
    1. Completion of a Diagnostic Tool for School and District Effectiveness (DTSDE) Self-Reflection by July 30, 2016; and
    2. Determination by no later than August 26, 2016 of the option the school will select:
      1. Partner with the National Board Certified Teacher Program
      2. Serve as a mentor site for Priority and Focus Schools
      3. Serve as a mentor and advisor to one focus/priority school principal
  2. A maximum of $50,000 will be provided to enhance the school and district’s best practices (Can only be accessed during Implementation Phase), after a required activity has been selected and approved.

Reward School funds cannot be used for the following:

Funds under this grant may not be used for construction, renovation, furnishings, or acquisition of technology./p>

Grant/Project Periods

Planning Phase: August 1, 2016 to September 30, 2016
Implementation Phase: October 1, 2016 to June 30, 2017

Application Deadline

Applications must be postmarked no later than by July 30, 2016.

Submission Instructions

Please Note: All grants must be submitted by the district. If more than one school in the district is applying, combine all schools into one district application and budget, but include separate Program Budget Narrative Charts, Self-Reflections, and other required documents for each participating school.

A complete application consists of one original bearing the original signature of the Superintendent and one electronic copy (CD, flash drive, or email to: DTSDEreviews@nysed.gov including the following):

  • Cover page (with original signature)
  • Title I Reward School Program Budget Narrative Chart (one chart per school)
  • Diagnostic Tool for School and District Effectiveness (DTSDE) Self-Reflection (one per school, completed and submitted no later than 7/30/16)
  • FS-10 Budget Form(with original signature)

Electronic copies sent via email should include the DISTRICT NAME in the subject line to expedite processing.

Send the completed application to:

Attn: School and District Review Unit, Reward School 1003(a) Application

New York State Education Department
School and District Review Unit
55 Hanson Place, Room 482
Brooklyn, NY 11217

For additional information or assistance please contact: DTSDEreviews@nysed.gov

Grant Application Documents

Application in PDF PDF icon (255KB) | Application in Word Word document icon (91KB)

Last Updated: July 6, 2016