ED to Evaluate Winners in $130M i3 Competition

As the Education Dept. prepares for another round of Investing in Innovation (i3) grants, it seeks to conduct a national evaluation of previous competition winners to see which strategies helped in improving the delivery of instruction in the K-12 classroom.

Public Comment Deadline: Nov. 28.

ED last year awarded about $130 million in three categories of i3 grants: Development Grants (up to $3 million each) (CFDA Numbers: 84.411P& 84.411C); Scale-up Grants ($19 million each) (CFDA Number: 84.411A) and Validation Grants ($11.5 million each) (CFDA Number: 84.411B)

The i3 competitions are different from the approximately 100 annual competitions that ED holds each year because it is a staged contest that begins with the Development round. The other two rounds only open after the Development competition closes. Last year’s final deadline was June 24. ED officials say to anticipate the first NOFA in March with an April deadline.

ED was mostly interested in projects which include compelling evidence showing positive results in achieving. The i3 program rewards innovative education practices that improve student achievement. Scale-up Grants enhance practices, strategies or programs with strong evidence of improving student achievement. Validation Grants support practices, strategies or programs that show promise for improving student achievement, but for which there is currently only moderate evidence.

The new assessment, National Evaluation of the Investing in Innovation (i3) Program, will look at 43 winners to determine whether they really did improve how they teach kids in the classroom. Specifically, the data collection will describe the intervention implemented by each i3 grantee; assess strength of the evidence produced by each i3 evaluation; present the evidence produced by each i3 evaluation; and identify best practices.

About Frank Klimko

Frank Klimko is a nationally known journalist, grants expert and speech writer/speaker. He has years of experience helping nonprofits devise lists of the right funding opportunities and secure funding from these foundations and corporate entities. Clients have focused on an array of areas including child care, homeless, hunger and K-12 education. Additionally, he is a Freedom of Information Act expert, who has helped numerous clients with securing proprietary information from the federal government. Currently, Frank Klimko writes the Children & Youth Funding Report and Private Grants Alert, which are Washington DC-based publications. CYF is a daily publication covering Congress, the Education Dept. and the various federal regulatory agencies. PGA, another daily publication, covers the world of private philanthropy.
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