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News

For Immediate Release
February 9, 2006

Advanced Placement Classes - College and Career Success for All Students

New Grant for AP funding for March to June 2006

Springfield, Ill. -- The Illinois State Board of Education is introducing a new grant for Advanced Placement® (AP®) funding entitled Advanced Placement Classes – College and Career Success for all Students. This grant and the programs it will fund are aimed at expanding and enhancing AP® and pre-AP programming in low income schools and districts.

The purpose of the College and Career Success for All Students Act is to “ensure that each Illinois student has a sufficient education for success after high school and that all students have equal access to a substantive and rigorous curriculum that is designed to challenge their minds, enhance their knowledge and skills, and prepare them for success in college and work.”

The Illinois State Board of Education will be funding grants to encourage school districts with a high percentage of low-income students to establish or expand programs designed to offer the rigorous coursework necessary for these students to succeed in postsecondary education or in the work place. Such programs include Advanced Placement (AP®) and Pre-Advancement (Pre-AP) programs for students in grades 6 through 12.

By meeting the criteria listed below, schools are eligible to develop and submit for review, a Request for Proposal (RFP) application which must be completed and received at the Illinois State Board of Education Springfield office no later than the close of business on March 6, 2006.

Public school districts and schools that are eligible to apply must have 40% or more of students eligible for free or reduced lunch. Eligible entities are listed on the ISBE website at http://www.isbe.net/curriculum/html/advanced_placement.htm.

Districts not on the list, but claiming eligibility must provide a school report card to verify their claim. Funding for this cycle will end June 31, 2006. Further funding is contingent on legislative support and may be available for FY07.

It is important to note that all funded applications must set aside 50% of grant receipts for professional development offerings from the College Board. No exceptions will be made. The remaining 50% can be used for support of teachers attending professional development and student support in AP® and pre-AP programs. Suggestions on appropriate and fundable program elements are outlined in the RFP. There is also a 5% administrative cap and no computer hardware requests will be considered.

The annual grant awards will average $100,000 per district, or $40,000 per school, as determined by the program design, size of program, and available funds. Total amount of funding that will be available is $1,500,000.

The grant period will begin no sooner than March 7, 2006, and will extend from the executed date of the grant until June 30, 2006. Funding may be available for two additional years. Funding in the subsequent years will be contingent upon a sufficient appropriation for the program and satisfactory progress in the preceding grant period.

Mail the original and two copies of the proposal to the Division of Curriculum and Instruction, Illinois State Board of Education, 100 North First Street, C-215, Springfield, Illinois 62777-0001, to ensure receipt no later than March 6, 2006. No fax copies will be accepted.

Proposals also may be hand-delivered to the following locations:

Springfield Office Chicago Office
Information Center Reception Area
1st Floor Suite 14-300
100 North First Street 100 West Randolph Street

For further information contact Lou Berkman at (312) 814-3853, or by email at lberkman@isbe.net.

Additional information is also available at http://www.isbe.net/curriculum/html/advanced_placement.htm.

Illinois State Board of Education
100 North First Street
Springfield, IL 62777