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Ed. Dept. Solicits Applications for Technical Assistance Centers

The U.S. Department of Education is looking for parties interested in providing technical assistance related to the Individuals With Disabilities Education Act.

The first funding opportunity is for entities that will provide assistance to the parent training and information centers, which are IDEA-mandated organizations that help parents navigate the special education system. There are currently 100 parent centers nationwide.

The second opportunity is for a new center that will help states accurately collect and report IDEA data. (As I wrote a few weeks ago, changes are coming to the system that states use to collect data on students with disabilities.)

The parent information center funding opportunity would establish eight separate technical assistance centers: six regional centers, one Native American center, and one center that will work with all the parent assistance organizations, creating resources and serving as a repository of information.

The funding will be approximately $1.8 million for these technical assistance centers in their first year, and between $2.6 million and $2.7 million in years 2-5. The deadline to apply is July 18.

The second grant is for an organization that will run the National Technical Assistance Center To Improve State Capacity To Accurately Collect and Report IDEA Data, or Data Center for short. That center will be expected to provide a variety of support to states, including training modules and personalized support to data managers. The education department has $6.5 million available for the center's first year, and the deadline to apply is July 19.

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