Question and Answer Page

To promote a transparent grant process, all questions will be answered here. If your question does not appear in the list below, please direct it to cdodson@doe.in.gov for inclusion here.

Q: Should a district submit more than one proposal for the new eLearning grants. For example, one per focus area?
A: They should not. While we know that many districts are doing work in all three of these areas, applicants should choose the one that has the greatest focus in their district. Grant recipients are more likely to be those districts where the chosen area is a key part of their strategic planning.
 
Q: Can you share some of the ideas that might reflect your thinking on customized learning? How do you define that?
A: In our terms, customized learning refers to finding ways to change the structure of school (particularly grade level distinctions) and leverage technology to allow students to move at a pace that best suits their needs. It will be the work of this consortium to further define it as it pertains to our schools as well as to develop specific models for implementation.
 
Q: Will we be required to work with a specific company or consultant in any of these areas?
A: There is no requirement from the Office of eLearning regarding partnerships with service or resource providers. The grant consortiums will determine the needs of the work and any needed resources, partnerships, etc.
 
Q: What will be the expectation for how districts will work together in a consortium?
A: We believe that progress in these areas is most likely to occur through the collaboration of districts moving in the same direction. This will take the form of physical meetings as well as the sharing of online resources. This work is meant to be less about defining a single way of doing things, and more about opening lines of communication that will substantially improve each district’s pilot.
 
Q: What are some examples of how the money might be spent? What are you wanting here?
A: Knowing that there are districts engaged in this work now, we are looking for anything that they believe would help them move their work forward. We will refrain from making specific suggestions, as the strength of these ideas will be key to evaluating the proposals. Besides district level expenditures, we are also very interested in thinking about what investments would benefit the entire consortium.
 
Q: Is the grant open to only public schools or also to state accredited private schools? Can Charter Schools apply?
A: The grant is open to all Indiana public K-12 school districts including public charters.
 
Q: Will our district have a reasonable chance at this grant since we have already received two IDOE grants in the past?
A: This grant is looking for districts highly engaged and passionate about the focus areas and willing to work as part of a consortium to produce models, content, and a replicable process of the work for other districts. Previously awarded grants will not help or hinder applicants.
 
Q: Are there going to be other grant opportunities this year via the eLearning team?
A: We support eLearning in our K-12 districts with David C Ford funds that are part of House Bill 1001 from the Legislature. The extent to which we can offer any grants, resources, etc, depends on the successful passing of our line items and the total amount appropriated. We hope that our districts will work to make sure that this funding not only goes forward, but is increased to help in the exciting and difficult work of teaching and learning in the digital age. We are hopeful to have more grant opportunities in the Fall of 2013.
 
Q: The application sounds like we should already have a 1:1 in place before applying for the grant. Can this grant be used to fund a new or expanded 1:1?
A: While previous grants (Classroom Innovation, Innovation Planning Grants) were focused on helping districts scale up to a 1:1 implementation, that is not the goal of this grant. These dollars are being invested to bring about new digital content and new models in content delivery. These grants will not be awarded to districts seeking to use them to fund a student device implementation.
 
Q: Would we need to assemble our own consortium, or will that be done by you once you see the proposals?
A: Each district needs to apply individually. The consortium for each topic will consist of those districts receiving a grant for that topic. However, please include any information about districts you are currently in collaboration with around this topic. We are not only looking for districts that may work well together, but also those who will help influence schools beyond the consortia.
 
Q: Can you tell us more about the Proposal Pitch day?
A:

A district’s success in level one of grant process, the online application, will move them to level two, pitching their proposal to the eLearning team. These pitches will take place at the IDOE offices in Indianapolis on March 19, 20, and 21st. If a team would rather pitch their proposal virtually, arrangements will be made. The pitch should be:

  • No more than ten minutes in length
  • Incorporate visuals
  • Be presented by the 4 members of your grant leadership team
  • Communicate in an informative and persuasive way why you should be a member of the consortium for the topic you selected

The 10 minute pitch will be followed by 10 minutes of questions from the eLearning team to the presenters.

 
Q: Will the amount of funding that a district requests exclude them from being considered for a consortium?
A: No. Funding for this grant will work differently from previous grants. While some funding will go directly to each district to expend, some expenditures will be made by the consortium as a whole. For your budget narrative, we are more interested in the ideas you bring about how to attack the focus area.
 
Created by Office of eLearning; Indiana Department of Education February 15, 2013, updated February 28, 2013 3:10 PM .