Applications are due on February 8 for the Title 1 School Improvement Grants, which targets the lowest-performing schools for turnaround. The Department decided to immediately release the five percent of each state’s grant dedicated to covering administrative costs. These funds, available now, are intended to help ease the burden of applying for the SIG grants. States may allocate some of these upfront funds to districts to help them prepare to implement turnaround strategies.
To receive School Improvement Grants, states must identify their lowest-performing schools. These schools must implement one of the four approved models:
The definitions of these models was changed somewhat from the draft guidance to the final guidance, and is now consistent across Race to the Top and the State Fiscal Stabilization Fund, as well as the Title 1 School Improvement Grant program. The final SIG application notes that any school implementing one of these models or components of one of the models may use funding to continue its work, provided it fully implements one of these four models.