New Mexico - Public Education Department


    School Improvement Grants

    School Improvement Grants (SIG), authorized under section 1003(g) of Title I of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (Title I or ESEA), are grants, through State Education Agencies (SEA), to Local Educational Agencies (LEA), for use in Title I schools identified for improvement, corrective action, or restructuring. Districts or LEAs must demonstrate the greatest need for the funds and the strongest commitment to use the funds to provide adequate resources in order to raise substantially the achievement of their students so as to enable the schools to make adequate yearly programs (AYP) and exit In Needs Of Improvement status. School Improvement Grant funds are to be focused in these areas depending on the capacity of the District.

    Tier I: The persistently lowest-achieving 5% of the Title I-served in need of improvement schools are identified as the foundation of the Tier I list of schools.  Added to this list of schools are any Title I-served high schools with graduation rates of less than 60 percent over the past four years. Both of these groups comprise the Tier I school list.

    Tier II: An eligible district may also apply if it has Title I-eligible but not served secondary (middle or high) schools that are as equally low achieving: the lowest 5% of these schools (or the lowest 5 schools, whichever number is greater) comprise the foundation of the Tier II list. Added to this list are any Title I- eligible but not served high schools with graduation rates of less than 60 percent over the past four years. Both of these groups comprise the Tier II school list.

    Tier III
    : The remaining Title I-served INOI schools comprise the Tier III school list.

    In the Tier I and Tier II schools an LEA chooses to serve, the LEA MUST implement one of four school intervention models:

    Turnaround: The district must implement each of the following strategies:

    Replace the principal and grant the principal sufficient operational flexibility to implement a comprehensive approach.
     
    Screen and measure the effectiveness of existing staff who can work within the turnaround environment to meet the needs of students and rehire no more than 50%; select new staff.
     
    Adopt a new governance structure.
     
    Use data to identify and implement a new or revised instructional program that is research-based and vertically aligned from one grade to the next as well as aligned with state academic standards.
     
    Implement such strategies as financial incentives, increased opportunities for promotion and career growth, and more flexible work conditions that are designed to recruit, place and retain effective staff with the skills necessary to meet the needs of the students in the turnaround school.
     
    Provide ongoing, high-quality, job-embedded professional development that is aligned with the school's comprehensive educational program and designed with school staff to ensure that staff is equipped to facilitate effective teaching and learning and has the capacity to successfully implement school reform strategies.
     
    Promote the continuous use of student data to inform and differentiate instruction. Establish schedules and implement strategies that increase learning time for students and staff.
     
    Provide appropriate social-emotional and community-oriented services and supports for students.

    Transformation: LEA must implement each of the following strategies:

    Develop and increase teacher and school leader effectiveness by -
     
    Replacing the principal who led the school prior to commencement of the transformation model.
     
    Using rigorous, transparent, and equitable evaluation systems for teachers and principals that take into account data on student growth, use multiple observation-based performance assessments, increased graduation rates, and are developed with teacher and principal involvement.
     
    Identifying and rewarding school leaders, teachers, and other staff who, in implementing this model, have increased student achievement and high school graduation rates.
     
    Identifying and removing those who, after ample opportunities have been provided for them to improve their professional practice, have not done so.
     
    Providing staff ongoing, high-quality, job-embedded professional development that is aligned with the school's comprehensive instructional program and designed with school staff.
     
    Implementing such strategies as financial incentives, increased opportunities for promotion and career growth, and more flexible working conditions that are designed to recruit, place, and retain staff with the skills necessary to meet the needs of the students in a transformation model.
     
    Implement comprehensive instructional reform strategies that includes -
     
    Using data to identify and implement research-based instructional programs that are aligned with state academic standards and vertically aligned between grades.
     
    Promoting continuous use of individualized student data to inform and differentiate instruction to better meet the individual academic needs of students.
     
    Promoting continuous use of individualized student data to inform and differentiate instruction to better meet the individual academic needs of students.
     
    Extend learning time and create community-oriented schools by -
     
    Establishing schedules and strategies that provide increased time for enhanced student learning and enrichment, teacher collaboration and planning.
     
    Providing ongoing mechanisms for family and community involvement.
     
    Provide operating flexibility and sustained support in implementing a comprehensive approach to improve student achievement and increase high school graduation rates, and ensure that the school receives ongoing, intensive technical assistance and related support from the LEA, SAEA, or designated external provider.


    Restart: The district converts or closes a school and reopens it under a charter school operator or a charter management organization (CMO), both of which are prohibited under state law.

    Closure: The district closes the school with students who attended the school reassigned to other, high-achieving schools within the LEA; these other schools should be within reasonable proximity to the closed school and may include, but are not limited to, charter schools or new schools for which achievement data are not yet available.

    New Mexico School Improvement Grant Application


     

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