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​Ready to Learn Block Grant

The 2018-2019 Ready to Learn Block Grant appropriation is $250,000,000, equivalent to the amount appropriated for 2017-2018. Allocations for school districts and charter schools will be distributed using the formula enacted in the Fiscal Code.

Accessing eGrants

  • Go to http://www.egrants.pa.gov or access via PDE Suite.
  • Login with your personal login for eGrants. If you do not have a login, contact the Agency User Administrator at your district who can add you and assign you the necessary roles.
  • Check that the date in the upper right hand corner shows 2018-2019 and that it shows Teaching and Learning Support. To change either of these, click on the item and a pop-up will allow you to make the change.
  • To begin a grant application:
    • Click Grants Management, then Grant Profiles.
    • Click the Select icon (Pad and Pencil) beside the desired grant name. (Ready to Learn)
    • Click the Create Grant Application button and complete the short Create Grant Application Wizard.
  • Complete all sections under Narratives and mark each section Complete (button at bottom of screen).  
    • In the Program Details section, for each strategy used, select from the first column options of "Establish" a new strategy, "Maintain" an existing strategy or "Expand" an existing strategy for the 2018-19 year. 
    • Indicate in the subsequent columns the amount of funding budgeted for each selected strategy
    • Put the estimated number of students impacted by each selected strategy, 
    • Type an amplifying explanation of how the strategy will be addressed through the funding.
    • Check the verification that you have filled out the four (4) columns for each strategy selected.
  • Submitting Plan:
    • No signature is required under Authorized Signoff. This is covered within the Assurances section.
    • Select Complete Step in lower right of the Grant Application Detail (main) page.
    • Select Submit that appears in same space.
    • A green checkmark will appear at the top of the grant confirming that the plan has been submitted.
    • Because there is no Budget section in this application, the Awarded Amount in the upper right corner of the Grant Application Detail page will remain at $0, even after the application has been reviewed and approved.

Timeline

  • September 4, 2018: eGrants opens for plan submissions.
  • November 30, 2018: Deadline for school districts and charter schools to submit applications.

Acceptable Uses of Funds

Act 126 of 2014, Section 1722-J(21), identifies the following proven practices as acceptable expenditures of Ready to Learn Block Grant Funds.
  1. Pre-K to Grade 3 curriculum alignment with current academic standards;
  2. Teacher training and professional development opportunities aligned with academic standards to improve early literacy and STEM education grades Pre-K to Grade 3;
  3. Pre-K to Grade 3 extended learning opportunities that allow for additional classroom instruction before, during and after school;
  4. Establishing, maintaining or expanding a quality pre-kindergarten program aligned with the state’s current academic standards;
  5. Establishing, maintaining or expanding a quality full-day kindergarten program aligned with the state’s current academic standards;
  6. Supplemental instruction and instructional coaches for current Keystone Exams;
  7. Implementation of Pennsylvania Comprehensive Literacy Plan;
  8. Efforts that improve student outcomes in STEM education program, including STEM training and professional development for educators;
  9. Establishing, expanding or maintaining math and literacy teacher coaching programs within schools to improve reading and math instruction;
  10. Establishing, expanding or maintaining hybrid-learning models;
  11. Researching, establishing, expanding or maintaining Competency-based learning models.
  12. Fifteen of the strategies listed under the Accountability Block Grant provision at 24 P.S. Section 25-2599.2. are available:

    (a) Establishing, maintaining or expanding pre-kindergarten with current academic standards contained in 22 Pa. Code Ch.4.(b) Establishing, maintaining or expanding full-day-kindergarten with current academic standards contained in 22 Pa. Code Ch.4.
    Such programs shall be open for five hours each day for full school term. A full-day kindergarten program may be offered to children
    between four and six years old.
    (c) Establishing, maintaining or expanding a Grades K-3 class-size reduction program. A minimum of one teacher for every 17 students
    or two teachers for every 35 students conducting a class at any one time is required.
    (d) Establishing, maintaining or expanding programs that promote the availability, coordination, integration and utilization of social and health
    services, associated resources to meet needs of students and families.
    (e) Provide tutoring assistance during the normal school day provided that it is in addition to and does not interfere with student’s regular
    schedule and does not supplant IEP services.
    (f) Improving academic performance of subgroups identified in NCLB Act of 2001.
    (g) Establishing, maintaining or expanding programs to assist in building of strong science and applied-knowledge skills.
    (h) Providing programs for professional education in math, science and literacy-specific curriculum and instructional strategies, analysis of
    student achievement data, exemplary practices, using technology and curriculum alignment.
    (i) Establishing, maintaining or expanding math and literacy coaching programs.
    (j) Providing financial incentives to highly qualified tenured teachers to work in academically challenged schools or providing financial
    incentives to aid in recruitment of certified teachers in math, science, language arts or ELL.
    (k) Establishing, maintaining or establishing a career awareness programs.
    (l) Purchasing materials or extending service hours for school libraries.
    (m) Establishing, maintaining or expanding programs in world languages in elementary grades. 
    (n) Establishing, maintaining or expanding programs to strengthen high school curricula by providing college and career programs, school-based counseling and professional development and offering APP courses to increase academic achievement.
    (o) Establishing, maintaining or expanding programs to provide intensive teacher training, professional development and teacher resources to elementary science teachers.