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< Back to current issue of Immigration Daily < Back to current issue of Immigrant's Weekly

[Federal Register: February 24, 2003 (Volume 68, Number 36)]
[Notices]               
[Page 8644-8647]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]
[DOCID:fr24fe03-104]                         




[[Page 8644]]


-----------------------------------------------------------------------


DEPARTMENT OF STATE


[Public Notice 4284]


 
Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs Request for Grant 
Proposals: Partners in Education Program


AGENCY: Department of State.


ACTION: Notice.


-----------------------------------------------------------------------


SUMMARY: The Office of Global Educational Programs of the Bureau of 
Educational and Cultural Affairs announces an open competition for the 
Partners in Education (PiE) Program. The goal of PiE is for Eurasian 
educators to learn about secondary-level citizenship education, 
curriculum development, and teaching methodologies in the U.S., and to 
establish professional partnerships with U.S. teachers and teacher-
trainers in schools, universities, and communities.
    Public and private non-profit organizations meeting the provisions 
described in Internal Revenue Code section 26 USC 501(c)(3) may submit 
proposals to administer this citizenship education project, which 
includes the following four components: A U.S.-based six-week 
professional internship program for approximately 56 English-language 
proficient, secondary school teachers, administrators, and teacher 
trainers from Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Kyrgyzstan, Ukraine and 
Uzbekistan; a two-week in-country workshop in each region, taught by 
Eurasian participants from the initial U.S.-based component for 
approximately 160 non-English-speaking social science educators; a two-
week exchange for approximately 16 U.S. educators who hosted the 
Eurasians during their stay in the United States to travel to the 
Eurasian visitors' schools; and a three-week program for approximately 
27 non-English-speaking Eurasian school directors. Please refer to the 
accompanying POGI for an exact breakdown of participant numbers. 
Proposals relating to the teaching of English or English as a foreign 
language (EFL) are not eligible.
    Recruitment for the U.S.-based cycles should begin in fall 2003. 
The grantee organization will be expected to recruit in the Eurasian 
countries listed above in consultation with the Bureau of Educational 
and Cultural Affairs and the Public Affairs Sections within U.S. 
embassies in these Eurasian countries. Selection of Eurasian 
participants for all components will be merit-based with a fair 
representation of large and small ``oblasts.''
    The program should encourage participants to establish contacts in 
the U.S. that will foster ongoing school and community partnerships 
upon their return to Eurasia. It is intended to promote democratic 
relations in Eurasian schools, including parental involvement, and 
build upon the Bureau's existing linkages with Eurasian secondary 
schools. (Specific school information is not needed for purposes of the 
proposal.) Proposals should address benefits and impact of the various 
program components on the participants as well as the U.S. and Eurasian 
schools.


Program Information


U.S.-Based Educator Internship


    The grantee organization should coordinate a six-week U.S.-based 
program for English-speaking teachers of social studies, American 
studies or civic education, and administrators of secondary schools, 
professors or instructors at teacher training institutes, or other 
education professionals actively involved in citizenship education. 
After an academically-focused orientation in Washington, DC, Eurasian 
participants will be placed in small groups in school districts in the 
U.S. and provided with internships at local high schools to experience 
U.S. educational communities and related democratic institutions. 
Internships must include individual partnering with mentor teachers to 
observe social science classrooms, as well as confer and teach 
collaboratively with mentors. In addition, activities should include 
participation in at least five days of professional development 
(especially Training of Trainer seminars) designed by the host schools 
or by local/regional schools of education; working with a civic 
education consultant to develop an in-country workshop (detailed below) 
for non-English speaking colleagues; learning about citizenship 
education curriculum development, and computer-based and other teaching 
methods; delivering presentations to students and faculty at host 
schools and communities on Eurasian educational systems and cultures; 
gathering teaching materials for use in their home schools.
    Participants should gain an understanding of the U.S. educational 
system and local control of education, as well as the relationship 
between the community and the educational system. The participants 
should visit various types of schools whenever possible (private, 
rural, inner city, Native American, charter, etc.), deliver 
presentations at those schools as well as to local civic and community 
groups, and attend Parent Teacher Association, school board, city 
council or other local governance meetings.
    During the internship component, the Eurasian educators should 
practice their knowledge of curriculum development by creating a 
citizenship education lesson plan or curriculum plan applicable to 
their home country context. They should be given an opportunity to 
present their plan to their colleagues at a debriefing workshop in 
Washington, DC at the end of the U.S. program.
    The grantee organization should solicit U.S. host proposals from 
schools, school-university partnerships, or private-sector institutions 
that are academically oriented and foster long-term linkages between 
U.S. high schools and comparable schools in the Eurasian countries 
involved. Where possible, U.S. host proposals should include 
institutions that have successfully participated in other secondary-
level Eurasia programs.


Eurasia Workshops


    The proposal should describe the implementation of a Eurasia-based 
component in which each regional group of educators who comes to the 
U.S.: (1) Develops, tests, and evaluates their new lesson plans and 
other citizenship education materials in their home schools; and (2) 
assisted by the civic education consultant, prepares an intensive 
workshop (one session lasting two weeks or two sessions lasting one 
week each) for up to 20 non-English speaking history/social studies/
civics teachers in their home region. The proposal should include a 
plan for recruitment of participants for these workshops. Candidates 
for the workshops must agree to implement the citizenship education 
lessons or other projects resulting from the workshops.


U.S. Educator Exchange


    The grantee organization will also be responsible for facilitating 
the reciprocal exchange of secondary-level U.S. teachers, preferably 
two mentor teachers from each U.S. host site in the Eurasian educator 
internship. The U.S. educators will travel to the community(ies) of the 
Eurasian teachers, and will take part in a substantive two-week program 
to be designed by the Eurasian participants in collaboration with the 
grantee organization, to strengthen the partnerships established during 
the U.S.-based program and implement linkage activities between the 
U.S. and Eurasian educational communities. This component should not 
conflict with the in-country workshops.


[[Page 8645]]


School Directors Program


    The school directors program should include non-English-speaking 
directors from Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Kyrgyzstan, Ukraine and 
Uzbekistan who will participate in a U.S.-based intensive three-week 
program that integrates the core citizenship education and social 
science curriculum presented to the PiE teachers, as well as specific 
seminars and workshops on participatory learning and community-based 
school governance. The school directors' program may begin at the same 
time as the U.S.-based educator internship program, or may be conducted 
separately, but in any case should include a Washington-based 
orientation. To maximize impact, the school directors should be 
recruited from Eurasian schools that have participated or are about to 
participate in the PiE teacher/administrator program. The grantee 
organization will be provided that information.
    The grantee should develop a comprehensive, academically oriented 
program that will engage the Eurasian school directors in democratic 
school reform issues and community-school relations, as well as 
exposing them to teaching methodologies for citizenship education and 
the social sciences. The school directors should travel in one or more 
groups and should be provided with appropriate interpretation; the 
grantee organization must show sensitivity to linguistic and ethnic 
issues involved. The Bureau will consider a school director component 
that exposes the participants to up to two U.S. communities or school 
districts during the three-week program. There is no Eurasia-based 
program for U.S. hosts of the Eurasian school directors component of 
the PiE program.


Guidelines


    The grant should begin on or around July 1, 2003, and the grantee 
should complete all exchange activities by December, 2005. The grantee 
organization will be responsible for activities related to recruitment, 
screening, orientation coordination, monitoring in the U.S., program 
evaluation, and alumni activities. The grantee organization will also 
be responsible for the competitive recruitment of U.S. host school 
districts for participation in the PiE teacher/administrator program, 
as well as sites for the school director program. The grantee 
organization will maintain general oversight for the program, under the 
direction of ECA. Please refer to additional program specific 
guidelines in the Project Objectives, Goals, and Implementation (POGI) 
document.
    Programs must comply with J-1 visa regulations. Please refer to 
Solicitation Package for further information.


Budget Guidelines


    The Bureau anticipates awarding one grant in the amount of 
$1,450,000 under this grant competition. Bureau grant guidelines 
require that organizations with less than four years of experience in 
conducting international exchange programs be limited to $60,000 in 
Bureau funding. Therefore, organizations that cannot demonstrate at 
least four years experience in conducting international exchanges are 
ineligible to apply under this competition. The Bureau encourages 
applicants to provide maximum levels of cost-sharing and funding from 
private sources in support of its programs.
    Applicants must submit a comprehensive budget for the entire 
program. There must be a summary budget as well as breakdowns 
reflecting both administrative and program budgets. Applicants should 
provide separate sub-budgets for each program component, phase, 
location, or activity to provide clarification, but should include an 
overall per participant program and administrative cost. The Bureau 
will look favorably upon proposals with modest administrative costs.
    Announcement Title and Number: All correspondence with the Bureau 
concerning this RFGP should reference the above title and number ECA/A/
S/X-03-03.


FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: The Office of Global Educational 
Programs, Fulbright Teacher Exchange Branch, ECA/A/S/X, Room 349, U.S. 
Department of State, S.A. 44, 301 4th Street, SW., Washington, DC 
20547, tel. 202-619-4556 and fax 202-401-1433, rwaldste@pd.state.gov to 
request a Solicitation Package. The Solicitation Package contains 
detailed award criteria, required application forms, specific budget 
instructions, and standard guidelines for proposal preparation. Please 
specify Bureau Program Officer Rachel Waldstein on all other inquiries 
and correspondence.
    Please read the complete Federal Register announcement before 
sending inquiries or submitting proposals. Once the RFGP deadline has 
passed, Bureau staff may not discuss this competition with applicants 
until the proposal review process has been completed.
    To Download a Solicitation Package via Internet: The entire 
Solicitation Package may be downloaded from the Bureau's Web site at 
http://exchanges.state.gov/education/RFGPs. Please read all information 
before downloading.
    Deadline for Proposals: All proposal copies must be received at the 
Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs by 5 p.m. Washington, DC 
time on Monday, April 14, 2003. Faxed documents will not be accepted at 
any time. Documents postmarked the due date but received on a later 
date will not be accepted. Each applicant must ensure that the 
proposals are received by the above deadline.
    Applicants must follow all instructions in the Solicitation 
Package. The original and eight copies of the application should be 
sent to: U.S. Department of State, SA-44, Bureau of Educational and 
Cultural Affairs, Ref.: ECA/A/S/X-03-03, Program Management, ECA/EX/PM, 
Room 534, 301 4th Street, SW., Washington, DC 20547.
    Applicants must also submit the ``Executive Summary'' and 
``Proposal Narrative'' sections of the proposal on a 3.5'' diskette, 
formatted for DOS. These documents must be provided in ASCII text (DOS) 
format with a maximum line length of 65 characters. The Bureau will 
transmit these files electronically to the Public Affairs section at 
the U.S. Embassy for its review, with the goal of reducing the time it 
takes to get embassy comments for the Bureau's grants review process.


Diversity, Freedom and Democracy Guidelines


    Pursuant to the Bureau's authorizing legislation, programs must 
maintain a non-political character and should be balanced and 
representative of the diversity of American political, social, and 
cultural life. ``Diversity'' should be interpreted in the broadest 
sense and encompass differences including, but not limited to 
ethnicity, race, gender, religion, geographic location, socio-economic 
status, and physical challenges. Applicants are strongly encouraged to 
adhere to the advancement of this principle both in program 
administration and in program content. Please refer to the review 
criteria under the 'Support for Diversity' section for specific 
suggestions on incorporating diversity into the total proposal. Public 
Law 104-319 provides that ``in carrying out programs of educational and 
cultural exchange in countries whose people do not fully enjoy freedom 
and democracy,'' the Bureau ``shall take appropriate steps to provide 
opportunities for participation in such programs to human rights and 
democracy leaders of such countries.'' Public Law 106--113 requires 
that the


[[Page 8646]]


governments of the countries described above do not have inappropriate 
influence in the selection process. Proposals should reflect 
advancement of these goals in their program contents, to the full 
extent deemed feasible.


Adherence to All Regulations Governing the J Visa


    The Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs is placing renewed 
emphasis on the secure and proper administration of Exchange Visitor (J 
visa) Programs and adherence by grantees and sponsors to all 
regulations governing the J visa. Therefore, proposals should 
demonstrate the applicant's capacity to meet all requirements governing 
the administration of Exchange Visitor Programs as set forth in 22 CFR 
6Z, including the oversight of Responsible Officers and Alternate 
Responsible Officers, screening and selection of program participants, 
provision of pre-arrival information and orientation to participants, 
monitoring of participants, proper maintenance and security of forms, 
record-keeping, reporting and other requirements. The Grantee 
organization will be responsible for issuing DS-2019 forms to 
participants in this program.
    A copy of the complete regulations governing the administration of 
Exchange Visitor (J) programs is available at http://exchanges.state.gov
 or from: United States Department of State, Office 
of Exchange Coordination and Designation, ECA/EC/ECD--SA-44, Room 734, 
301 4th Street, SW., Washington, DC 20547. Telephone: (202) 401-9810. 
FAX: (202) 401-9809.


Review Process


    The Bureau will acknowledge receipt of all proposals and will 
review them for technical eligibility. Proposals will be deemed 
ineligible if they do not fully adhere to the guidelines stated herein 
and in the Solicitation Package. All eligible proposals will be 
reviewed by the program office, as well as the Public Diplomacy section 
overseas, where appropriate. Eligible proposals will be subject to 
compliance with Federal and Bureau regulations and guidelines and 
forwarded to Bureau grant panels for advisory review. Proposals may 
also be reviewed by the Office of the Legal Adviser or by other 
Department elements. Final funding decisions are at the discretion of 
the Department of State's Assistant Secretary for Educational and 
Cultural Affairs. Final technical authority for assistance awards or 
cooperative agreements resides with the Bureau's Grants Officer.


Review Criteria


    Technically eligible applications will be competitively reviewed 
according to the criteria stated below. These criteria are not rank 
ordered and all carry equal weight in the proposal evaluation:
    1. Quality of the program idea: Proposals should exhibit 
originality, innovation, substance, precision, and relevance to the 
Bureau's mission of promoting civic education, leadership and 
democratic development of schools in Eurasia.
    2. Program planning/Ability to achieve program objectives: Detailed 
agenda and relevant work plan should demonstrate substantive 
undertakings and logistical capacity. Agenda and plan should adhere to 
the program overview and guidelines described above. Objectives should 
be reasonable, feasible, and flexible. Proposals should clearly 
demonstrate how the institution will meet the program's objectives and 
plan.
    3. Multiplier effect/impact: Proposed programs should strengthen 
long-term mutual understanding, including maximum sharing of 
information and establishment of long-term institutional and individual 
linkages.
    4. Support of Diversity: Proposals should demonstrate substantive 
support of the Bureau's policy on diversity. Achievable and relevant 
features should be cited in both program administration (selection of 
participants, program venue and program evaluation) and program content 
(orientation and wrap-up sessions, program meetings, resource materials 
and follow-up activities).
    5. Follow-on Activities: Proposals should provide a plan for 
continued follow-on activity (without Bureau support) ensuring that 
Bureau supported programs are not isolated events.
    6. Project Evaluation: Proposals should include a plan to evaluate 
the activity's success, both as the activities unfold and at the end of 
the program. A draft survey questionnaire or other technique plus 
description of a methodology to use to link outcomes to original 
project objectives is recommended. Successful applicants will be 
expected to submit intermediate reports after each project component is 
concluded or quarterly, whichever is less frequent.
    7. Cost-effectiveness and cost/sharing: The overhead and 
administrative components of the proposal, including salaries and 
honoraria, should be kept as low as possible. All other items should be 
necessary and appropriate. Proposals should maximize cost-sharing 
through other private sector support as well as institutional direct 
funding contributions.
    8. Institutional Capacity and Record: Proposed personnel and 
institutional resources should be adequate and appropriate to achieve 
the program or project's goals. Proposals should demonstrate an 
institutional record of successful exchange programs in general and in 
the Eurasia region, including responsible fiscal management and full 
compliance with all reporting requirements for past Bureau grants as 
determined by Bureau Grant Staff. The Bureau will consider the past 
performance of prior recipients and the demonstrated potential of new 
applicants.


Authority


    Overall grant making authority for this program is contained in the 
Mutual Educational and Cultural Exchange Act of 1961, Public Law 87-
256, as amended, also known as the Fulbright-Hays Act. The purpose of 
the Act is ``to enable the Government of the United States to increase 
mutual understanding between the people of the United States and the 
people of other countries . . .; to strengthen the ties which unite us 
with other nations by demonstrating the educational and cultural 
interests, developments, and achievements of the people of the United 
States and other nations . . . and thus to assist in the development of 
friendly, sympathetic and peaceful relations between the United States 
and the other countries of the world.'' The funding authority for the 
program above is provided through legislation. The funding authority 
for the program above is provided through the Freedom for Russia and 
Emerging Eurasian Democracies and Open Markets Support Act of 1993 
(FREEDOM Support Act).


Notice


    The terms and conditions published in this RFGP are binding and may 
not be modified by any Bureau representative. Explanatory information 
provided by the Bureau that contradicts published language will not be 
binding. Issuance of the RFGP does not constitute an award commitment 
on the part of the government. The Bureau reserves the right to reduce, 
revise, or increase proposal budgets in accordance with the needs of 
the program and the availability of funds. Awards made will be subject 
to periodic reporting and evaluation requirements.


Notification


    Final awards cannot be made until funds have been appropriated by


[[Page 8647]]


Congress, allocated and committed through internal Bureau procedures.


    Dated: February 14, 2003.
Patricia S. Harrison,
Assistant Secretary for Educational and Cultural Affairs, Department of 
State.
[FR Doc. 03-4306 Filed 2-21-03; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4710-05-P





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