Insight Grants

ED Funding Forecast Shows Many Opportunities on the Horizon

A review of the US Department of Education’s (ED) Forecast of Funding Opportunities shows funding priorities have shifted as the President and Congress attempt to respond to the increasing need to keep schools safe for students, teachers, and administrators alike. The first major change to the Forecast for FY 2014 shows Congress has supported several new mental health and safety grant programs for schools proposed by the President in addition to a key existing program.

Two School Climate Transformation Grant programs will be available for the first time in 2014: one for states (SEAs) and one for school districts (LEAs). The President requested at total of $50 million for the two programs. We await the RFPs to determine the final amounts available. Both programs will seek to prevent and reduce bullying and other problem behaviors through implementation of evidence-based programs according to information available at

Eve Birge, Program Manager for the LEA grant, states, “The purpose of the School Climate Transformation grant program is to help States and school districts build local capacity to train teachers and other school staff to implement multi-tiered behavioral frameworks to improve school climate.”

More information about the School Climate Transformation grants will be released this Spring when their RFPs are available. Presently, applications/RFPs for both programs are forecasted for release on or around April 11th with deadlines on or around May 21st.

Another new grant surfacing in 2014 is Project Prevent. We anticipate $25 million will be available for awards for this program in 2014, if funds allocated align with the President’s recommendation. As proposed by the President, this grant would seek to enable school districts with high levels of violence to provide social and emotional supports and mental health services for trauma or anxiety, while also promoting conflict resolution and other school-based strategies to prevent further violence from occurring. The application is expected to be available on or around April 25th, and the deadline for applying is expected to be on or around June 9th.

A new grant for states entitled Grants to SEAs for Emergency Management will also be available in 2014 and is likely to be similar to the previous LEA grant known as Readiness and Emergency Management for Schools and its predecessor Emergency Response and Crisis Management.  The President recommended up to 30 million dollars for this program. With the application opening on or around April 3rd, the grant seeks to support States in helping schools develop, implement, and improve emergency management plans. This is in response to the need of schools to strengthen their capacity to prevent, prepare for, respond to and recover from emergencies and crisis events. The deadline for this grant is expected to be on or around May 19th.

Congress once again supported the Elementary and Secondary School Counseling grant for 2014, despite the President’s proposal to cut this valuable program, which exists to help school districts establish or expand school-based counseling programs and mental health supports for students.  Schools that show significant need and develop comprehensive, innovative counseling programs with significant promise for dissemination and replication are given special consideration in applying for this grant. According to the program’s website (, “Projects should: (1) use a developmental, preventive approach, (2) expand the inventory of effective counseling programs, (3) include in-service training, and (4) involve parents and community groups.”

The Elementary and Secondary School Counseling grant application is forecasted for release on or around March 18th with the deadline on or around May 2nd. As this program funded down the slate in 2013, competition in 2014 is expected to be especially tough. Schools hoping to apply should begin preparing NOW.

In addition, ED will partner with the US Department of Justice’s (DOJ) Office of Justice Programs (OJP) on the newly-created DOJ Comprehensive School Safety Programs in 2014. Based on the President’s proposed design, this program is expected to, “provide funds for hiring school personnel including mental health professionals and school resource officers, purchasing school safety equipment, and other school safety activities.” ( Congress has allocated $75 Million for this program in 2014. The application is expected to be posted at when available.

Other key opportunities supporting school safety and/or students’ mental health may be available this year through DOJ, the US Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS), the US Department of Homeland Security, and/or the States.

If you are interested in applying for any of the above grants or would like more information on Insight’s services, please contact us by phone at 716-474-0981, email, or fill out our online contact form.

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