Race to the Top - Early Learning Challenge (RTT-ELC) Program
Thank you to everyone who has submitted opinions, ideas, suggestions, and comments on this dedicated Web site pertaining to the draft executive summary of the draft requirements, priorities, selection criteria, and definitions for the RTT-ELC competition.
We received 349 Responses from the public.
We are no longer accepting input on our Web site. Later this summer, we will publish the Notice Inviting Applications (NIA) for the RTT-ELC Program in the Federal Register.
Please check our RTT-ELC Program page for updates.
Thank you for your interest in the RTT-ELC Program, the administration's signature early learning reform initiative. This program will be jointly administered by the U.S. Departments of Education (ED) and Health and Human Services (HHS).
In order to run a rigorous competition and obligate funds to grantees before the December 31, 2011 statutory deadline, ED will waive rulemaking for this new program, pursuant to its authority in the General Education Provisions Act. However, we want your input on how we implement the major elements of this program so we are posting this draft executive summary of the draft requirements, priorities, selection criteria, and definitions for the RTT-ELC competition on this Web site and we encourage all interested parties to share their comments with us. This document will be posted for public input until 5:00 PM EDT on July 11, 2011, at which time the input section will be closed and we will begin considering input received as we develop final requirements, priorities, selection criteria, and definitions. We will publish those requirements, priorities, selection criteria, and definitions in a Notice Inviting Applications in the Federal Register later this summer.
The RTT-ELC competition is a powerful tool that will help highly committed States provide more children from birth to age five from low-income families – with access to high-quality Early Learning and Development Programs. As with the first two rounds of Race to the Top, the bar to receive an RTT-ELC grant will be set high.
Through the RTT-ELC, we want to support breakthrough work that dramatically improves the quality of Early Learning and Development Programs serving High-Need Children. The competition will focus on key reforms, including aligning early childhood resources and systems and improving early learning and development standards and assessment, program standards, tiered rating and improvement systems, and early childhood educators. We will be looking to fund applications that demonstrate courage, commitment, capacity, and creativity.
In commenting on this document, we encourage potential applicants to identify barriers in current federal programs that may impede implementation of an ambitious, high-quality State Plan.
We are posting this document on a moderated site. That means all posts will be reviewed before they are posted. We intend to post all responsive submissions on a timely basis. We reserve the right not to post comments that are unrelated to this request, are inconsistent with ED's Web site policies, are advertisements or endorsements, or are otherwise inappropriate. Please do not include links to advertisements or endorsements, as we will delete them before we post your comments. Additionally, to protect your privacy and the privacy of others, please do not include personally identifiable information such as Social Security numbers, addresses, phone numbers, or email addresses in the body of your comments. For more information, please be sure to read the "comments policy."
Please understand that posts must be related to the RTT-ELC competition and program, and should be as specific as possible. Each post must be limited to 1,000 words. All opinions, ideas, suggestions, and comments are considered informal input and ED and HHS will not respond to any posts. If you include a link to additional information in your post, we urge you to ensure that the linked information is accessible to all individuals, including individuals with disabilities. We look forward to receiving your ideas and suggestions. However, the input you provide in these posts might or might not be reflected in the final RTT-ELC requirements, priorities, selection criteria, or definitions, or the other policies that are enunciated in the final RTT-ELC NIA.
Again, thank you for your interest in this historic opportunity to support early learning. We look forward to hearing from you.
Note to reader: Defined terms are used throughout this document and are identified using initial capitalization. Definitions are provided later in the document.
Click the links below to read the draft requirements, priorities, selection criteria, and definitions; then click "Add a New Comment" at the bottom of the screen to tell us what you think about that item.
- Signatures and Assurances
- Eligibility Requirements
- Award Information
- Priority 1: Absolute Priority – Using Early Learning and Development Standards and Kindergarten Entry Assessments to Promote School Readiness
- Priority 2: Absolute Priority – Using Tiered Quality Rating and Improvement Systems to Promote School Readiness
- Priority 3: Competitive Preference Priority – Including all Early Learning and Development Programs in the Tiered Quality Rating and Improvement System
- Priority 4: Invitational Priority – Sustaining Program Effects in the Early Elementary Grades
- Priority 5: Invitational Priority – Encouraging Private Sector Support
- Selection Criteria
- (A) Successful State Systems
- (A)(1) The State's ambitious early learning and development reform agenda and goals
- (A)(2) Demonstrating past commitment and investment in supporting Early Learning and Development Programs
- (A)(3) Organizing and aligning the early learning and development system to achieve success
- (A)(4) Building or enhancing an early learning data system to improve instruction, practices, services, and policies
- (A)(5) Developing a budget to implement and sustain the work of this grant
- (B) Promoting Early Learning and Development Outcomes for Children
- (B)(1) Developing and using statewide, high-quality Early Learning and Development Standards
- (B)(2) Supporting effective uses of Comprehensive Assessment Systems
- (B)(3) Understanding the status of children's learning and development at kindergarten entry
- (B)(4) Identifying and addressing the health, behavioral, and developmental needs of High-Need Children to improve school readiness
- (B)(5) Engaging and supporting families
- (C) High-Quality, Accountable Programs
- (C)(1) Developing and adopting a common, statewide set of tiered Program Standards
- (C)(2) Promoting Participation in the State's Tiered Quality Rating and Improvement System
- (C)(3) Rating, monitoring, and improving Early Learning and Development Programs
- (C)(4) Validating the effectiveness of the State Tiered Quality Rating and Improvement System in improving school readiness
- (D) A Great Early Childhood Education Workforce
- (D)(1) Developing Workforce Knowledge and Competencies and a progression of credentials
- (D)(2) Supporting Early Childhood Educators in improving their knowledge, skills, and abilities
- (D)(3) Partnering with postsecondary institutions and other professional development providers in developing effective Early Childhood Educators
- (A) Successful State Systems
- Program Requirements