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Grants and Applications for Grants - March 2005 Revision

APS schools and programs may apply for grants to enhance instruction and learning. These grants may be from federal, state and local government agencies or granting foundations and companies. Grant applications must be coordinated through the District administration to ensure that they are not competitive with each another. This Procedural Directive applies to grant applications that involve one or more of the following:

  • Award amounts in excess of $5,000.
  • Reporting requirements to the funding agency that require detailed financial and/or evaluative information.
  • Expense reimbursements requests to the funding agency.
  • Allocation of grant funds to multiple district sites.

Notification of Interest, Intent and Compliance

Prior to beginning any grant application work on behalf of the district, or by the district, the following must take place:

  • Any party interested in applying for a grant in the name of the school district is to submit to the appropriate district-level supervisor the Grant Concept Form advising of the applicant’s interest and requesting permission to apply for the proposed grant. This form is available from the Superintendent’s Office.
  • Commitments of current or future APS resources, space, or financial requirements must be fully disclosed and will be carefully reviewed before the District grants approval.
  • The Superintendent’s Office will review all Grant Concept Forms and grant or deny permission for the interested party to proceed with the grant application process.

Grant Applications

After the Grant Concept Form is approved, the procedure listed below must be followed:

  1. Applicants must submit the semi-final draft copies of the application and budget to the APS Categorical Programs Office and the Superintendent’s Office one week before the application deadline.
  2. The Categorical Programs Office will review the application and budget for completeness, and for district obligations.  The Superintendent’s Office will review the application for alignment with the district’s strategic direction.
  3. After reviewing the application and budget, the Superintendent’s Office will approve or disapprove the grant application.

It is expected that all grant applicants adhere to this timeline, however, when grant announcement timing will not allow it, the Director of Categorical Programs must be contacted to address any variance.

All grants must include a budget item for audit fees and indirect costs if the grant is to be administered by the Categorical Programs Office, unless disallowed by the granting agency.

If approved by the Superintendent, the grant application will be returned to the applicant for submission. If the application is not approved, the reason for such disapproval will be noted.

Grant Awards

After approval by the granting agency, the following process must occur to be in compliance with Public Education Department (PED) requirements:

  1. Applicant receives written notification of grant award which must indicate the following:
    1. Dollar amount of award.
    2. Funding period.
  2. School/department submits the following information to Categorical Programs office:
    1. Award letter or contract.
    2. Budget approved by funding agency.
    3. Board Format (request form from Categorical)
    4. Grant proposal approved by funding agency.
  3. Categorical Program staff prepares Board documents and state budget adjustment request (BAR).
  4. Director of Categorical Programs schedules date to request budget increase approval from Board Finance Committee.
  5. Budget increase request presented to Board Finance Committee. Forwarded to full Board for approval with either a “do pass” recommendation or no recommendation.
  6. Budget increase formally approved at regularly scheduled Board meeting.
  7. BAR forwarded to Budget Office and Superintendent for signatures.
  8. BAR forwarded to SDE for signatures. Budget authority is granted on the date that the BAR is signed in Santa Fe.
    1. Funds are not to be obligated before this date.
  9. Grant management is assigned to a bookkeeper in Categorical Programs office.
  10. Cost accounts are set up for school or department to begin expenditures. Categorical Programs will notify school or department when this is done.

Additional Information and Reminders

All district policies will apply to programs funded by grants. This includes but is not limited to policies and regulations related to hiring, employee compensation, procurement and finance. (See attached document entitled “General Guidelines for All Grant Funds” for additional clarification.)

Any grant involving research studies with students, staff , parents, etc. must be cleared by the district’s office of Research, Development and Accountability (RDA) to insure that all legal and ethical requirements are met.

Unless agreed to in the grant application, grant applicants must understand that the district is under no obligation to provide additional resources, employ FTE funded by the grant or continue grant activities and programs beyond the funding period of the grant.

GENERAL GUIDELINES FOR ALL GRANT FUNDS

Impact on the District’s Operational Budget

All applicants for potential grant awards must determine the impact of the grant on the district’s operational budget in relation to space, utilities, personnel, additional reporting requirements, in-kind/matching contribution requirements and maintenance of effort beyond the funding period of the grant.

The applicant must also consult with all departments potentially affected by the grant award. This information must be reported on the Grant Concept Form prior to being submitted.

Restricted Use of Funds

All grant-related expenditures are restricted to the allowable use of funds outlined in the respective grant application approved by the funding agency. A statement of justification must accompany all grant expenditures to insure compliance with the intent of the specific grant.

Reasonable Cost

EDGAR  C.2 states that "A cost is reasonable if, in its nature and amount, it does not exceed that which would be incurred by a prudent person under the circumstances prevailing at the time the decision was made too incur the cost." This principle will be enforced by program managers and the Grant Management Department as grant funds are expended for goods and services.

Travel

All travel must be specified within the approved grant application and pre-approved by the Chief Business Officer prior to the travel date. Reimbursement will be disallowed for travel requests submitted after the fact. Employees may choose per-diem or actual costs for reimbursement. Rates are as follows:

Per Diem:

  • In State: $65.00 (Special Areas - $75.00)
  • Out of State: $75.00 (Special Areas - $95.00)

Actual Costs:

  • Lodging: $200.00/day maximum (receipts required)
  • Food: $22.50/day maximum (receipts required)

Contracts

Any person or business entity contracted to perform services for an APS school or department must have an approved Professional Services Agreement (PSA) in place, which must include a vendor number and NM CRS number. Services on the contract may not begin until the PSA is fully approved. Payment for services rendered prior to the approval date of the contract will be disallowed.

Purchasing Deadlines

The district purchasing deadlines apply to all Federal, State, local and private grants.

Salary Schedules and Employment

EDGAR Attachment B.11.(3).b states that “Compensation for employees engaged in work on federal awards will be considered reasonable to the extent that it is consistent with that paid for similar work in other activities of the governmental unit.” New and existing positions paid with grant funds must conform to current district policies for hiring, rating, placement and compensation on the position’s respective salary schedule. The district is under no obligation to continue funding a grant position beyond the funding period of the grant.

Stipends

Stipend rates for teachers and EA’s are determined in their respective negotiated agreements. As such, there is no flexibility on these rates regardless of the funding source. Current rates are as follows:

  • Teachers: $18.00/hour ($20.00/hour for teaching summer school)
  • EA’s: $7.50/hour

Flat rates may be paid as long as documentation is submitted indicating that payment does not exceed the negotiated hourly rates. Stipends for administrative personnel will only be allowed if specified in the approved grant application and approved by the appropriate superintendent. All stipend timesheets associated with grants must be submitted to the Grant Management Department for approval 2 days prior to the district payroll deadlines and must include time logs indicating the date, hours and description of the work performed.

Overtime

The district is required to pay non-exempt employees time-and-one-half for all time worked in excess of 40 hours per week. This is a non-negotiable item required by the Fair Labor Standards Act that needs to be considered as the grant budget is planned.

Cross Ref.:

  • Manual of Procedures for Public Schools Accounting and Budgeting
  • SDE 1990 revised Personnel, Policy, and Procedures on Management (0662A)

NSBA/NEPN Classification: DD

Revised: May 1995
Revised: April 1996
Revised: April 1997
Revised: March 1998
Revised: March 2005

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