The U.S. Department of Education announced today that 242 applications were submitted to compete for a share of the nearly $60 million in 2012 Promise Neighborhoods funds.
“The huge response from the field shows the widespread need for comprehensive strategies to address poverty's effect on educating children,” said Assistant Deputy Secretary for the Office of Innovation and Improvement Jim Shelton. “This year's funding will build on President Obama's commitment to focusing on results by meeting the larger social challenges outside the classroom so that we can enable children to succeed inside the classroom."
The Department expects to award around $27 million in first-year funding for up to seven new implementation grants, and $7 million for up to 14 new planning grants. Of the 242 applications, 60 were for implementation grants, and 182 were for planning grants.
Implementation grants will range from 3 to 5 years with estimated first-year awards totaling $4 to $6 million each. New one-year planning grantees will be awarded up to $500,000 each.
Remaining funds will provide second-year funding to the five implementation grantees awarded in 2011.
Launched in 2010, Promise Neighborhoods grants have invested in locally driven efforts to improve the lives of families and children living in impoverished communities. Funds support community-led work to build partnerships, secure needed social services, and strengthen schools.
To date, Promise Neighborhoods has received over 850 applications from 48 states and the District of Columbia, American Samoa and Puerto Rico.
The Promise Neighborhoods program is a piece of a larger Obama Administration initiative to revitalize high-poverty communities through integrated resources to transform them into neighborhoods of opportunity.
President Obama's fiscal year 2013 budget requests $100 million to fund a fourth round of implementation and planning grants. 2012 awards will be made no later than Dec. 31, 2012.