The Arkansas Department of Education (ADE) announces the availability of funds for local school districts to apply through a competitive grant process for the development of parent involvement. Up to one million dollars will be available for distribution to the districts through the Smart Start Initiative to establish or enhance programs that actively engage parents in the education of their children and to develop a partnership between the home and school. The Parent Involvement Grant aligns with the Poverty Index funds that may include services for parents of children age 3 through Grade 4. The involvement of parents is a major thrust in the Smart Start Initiative and the ADE is committed to the development of these programs across the state.
In the 98-99 fiscal year, sixty-four local school districts and education service cooperatives were awarded with funding to either continue their previous year's efforts or initiate the Parent Involvement Program for the first time. The priority for the Parent Involvement Grants will target those districts that desire to initiate a first year project and those that need additional assistance to continue the project for a second/third year of funding. A minimum amount of funds will be set aside for those districts that demonstrate continuance of the Parent Involvement Program from other funding sources but need some assistance to transition or to acquire support to ensure permanency. Only one grant will be available per district regardless of the number of elementary schools within the district. Education service cooperatives may also be eligible for funding to assist district(s) within their region.
Local districts or education service cooperatives may submit proposals for a grant that will be awarded for the development of a Parent Involvement Program. The original application and three (3) copies must be appropriately postmarked by Friday, March 10, 2000. Incomplete applications, faxed applications or applications received postmarked after March 10th will not be considered.