Investing in Innovation Fund

The Department of Education’s (ED) Office of Innovation and Improvement released its final revisions to the priorities, requirements, and selection criteria for the Investing in Innovation Fund (i3) program. Grants will be available in three categories, with a maximum of two grants available for each applicant in a single year. “Scale-up grants” are available to applicants with the strongest evidence and track records of success with innovative programs, “validation grants” are available to verify effectiveness of innovative programs with moderate levels of evidence, and “development grants” support new and high-potential practices whose impact should be studied further. According to ED, the revised priorities, requirements, and selection criteria allow it to simplify and improve the design of the i3 program to better achieve its purposes and goals, specifically improving achievement and graduation rates in rural schools and promoting science, technology, mathematics, and engineering education. The final revisions make one significant change from the January 2011 proposed revisions: the “limits on grant awards” stipulates no grantee may receive more than two new i3 grant awards of any type in a single year, no grantee may receive more than one new scale-up or validation grant in any two-year period, and no grantee may receive more than $55 million in new i3 grant awards in a single year. These revisions are effective July 5, 2011.

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