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October 4, 2007

US Department of Education Response to Madison's SLC Grant Application

Angela Hernandez-Marshall 971K PDF:

We have completed our review of applications received under the Smaller Learning Communities Program (CFDA 84.215L) [MMSD SLC Application]. The Department received a total of 236 eligible applications in this competition. Of these, 38 were selected for funding. Unfortunately, your application was not selected for funding this year.

Each application received a comprehensive review b y external reviewers who had experience implementing, documenting, or evaluating policies, programs, or practices at the national, state, or district level to improve the academic achievement of public high school students. Panel members included teachers, school, district, and state administrators, technical assistance providers, education researchers and program evaluators. Using the criteria published in the Federal Register notice, three reviewers independently rated each application and documented strengths and weaknesses.

The Department does not return copies of unfunded application to the applicant but we will retain a copy of your application until the end of this calendar year in the event that you wish to discuss it with us. We are enclosing a copy of the reviewers' evaluations and comments, which you may use to strengthen your proposal for future competitions. To that end, please check our website beginning in November 2007 for information about the next Smaller Learning Communities grants competition:

We appreciate the time and thought that went into the planning and preparation of your application. Your ongoing school improvement efforts are critical to improving educational services that will meet the unique needs o f high school students. Again, we do regret that we are unable to support your application and thank you for your effort.

Please forward any further inquiries to me at

The first reviewer noted (page 3) that "(5) As part of the district's strategic planing there is no examination of the successes and weaknesses of previous SLC initiatives (pages 15-16).".

Related, via Jeff Henriques:

Posted by Jim Zellmer at October 4, 2007 10:43 AM
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