Competency-Based Education Pilot Grant - FAQs

Competency-Based Education Pilot Grant - FAQs

General Information

Eligibility

Applying in the CCIP

Requirements of Applicants

Funding

Selection and Awards

Implementation

Other Initiatives and Questions


General Information

    What is competency-based education?

    The Ohio Department of Education views competency-based education as a system of academic instruction, assessment, grading and reporting where students receive credit, not as a function of how much time they spend studying a subject, but based on demonstrations and assessments of their learning. Successful programs tailor instruction to students’ current levels of knowledge and skills, and students are free to progress at the same rates as their peers or at their own pace. Competency-based education allows for accelerated learning among students who master academic material quickly and provides additional instructional support time for students who need it.

    According to The Online Learning Definitions Project published by iNACOL in October 2011, competency-based learning includes the following elements:

    • Students advance upon mastery;
    • Competencies include explicit, measurable, transferable learning objectives that empower students;
    • Assessment is meaningful and a positive learning experience for students;
    • Students receive timely, differentiated support based on their individual learning needs; and
    • Learning outcomes emphasize competencies that include application and creation of knowledge along with the development of important skills and dispositions.

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    What is the Competency-Based Education Pilot?

    The Competency-Based Education Pilot, established by the 131st General Assembly in H.B. 64, will allow five selected applicants to plan and implement competency-based programs during the pilot (2015-2016, 2016-2017, 2017-2018 and 2018-2019 school years) as well as participate in the state collaborative work group.

    This Competency-Based Education Pilot will do all of the following:

    • Promote innovative learning that is meaningful to students, cuts across multiple curriculum areas and extends outside of the classroom; and
    • Advance students to higher-level work once they demonstrate mastery of competencies, rather than advancing based upon seat time in the classroom, including opportunities in college and industry; and
    • Give supports to struggling students before they advance and prevent further failure down the road; and
    • Keep all students on pace to graduate, and ensure those below level make rapid progress; and
    • Graduate students with deeper college and career ready skills; and
    • Inform future development of statewide competency-based policies and programs.

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    Which sites have been selected to participate in the Competency-Based Education Pilot?
    • Chagrin Falls Exempted Village School District
    • Cincinnati City School District
    • Consortium led by Educational Service Center of Cuyahoga County
      • Cleveland Heights-University Heights City Schools
      • Kirtland Local Schools
      • Maple Heights City Schools
      • Orange City Schools
      • Perry Local Schools
      • Springfield Local Schools
    • Consortium led by Fairfield County Educational Service Center led consortium
      • Eastland-Fairfield Career Tech
      • Pickerington Community School
    • Consortium led by Geauga County Educational Service Center
      • BioMed Science Academy
      • Dayton Regional STEM School
      • Global Impact STEM
      • iSTEM Geauga Early College High School

    Pilot site summaries can be viewed by clicking here

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Eligibility

    Who is eligible?

    Eligible applicants include community schools, joint vocational school districts, STEM schools, traditional school districts, and educational service center-led consortia (of one or more school districts, community schools and STEM schools) Eligible applicants are strongly encouraged to complete an Interest Survey by September 30, 2015 at 5:00 pm. If you have missed the deadline, email competency.based.education@education.ohio.gov to let us know you are interested. 

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    Can a joint vocational school district, school district, community school or STEM school lead a consortium? No, a consortium must be led by an educational service center and have at least two partners (joint vocational school district, school district, community school or STEM school).

    No, a consortium must be led by an educational service center and have at least two partners (joint vocational school district, school district, community school or STEM school).

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    Can multiple joint vocational school districts, school districts, community schools or STEM schools partner to submit a grant application?

    A group of school districts, community schools, STEM schools or joint vocational school districts or a combination of eligible entities can apply only if they partner with an educational service center who leads the consortium.

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    Are schools that are set to open in the 2016-2017 school year eligible to apply individually or as part of a consortium?

    No, only currently operating (in the 2015-2016 school year) organizations will be eligible to apply.

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    Can a school or district apply individually and as a partner in a consortium?

    Yes; however, it is highly unlikely that multiple applications from the same entity will be awarded due to the limited number of awards available.

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    Can an eligible applicant submit multiple applications?

    Only an Educational Service Center-led consortium can submit multiple applications, however, it is highly unlikely that multiple applications will be awarded due to the limited number of awards available. 

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    Can private schools apply individually or as part of a consortium?

    No, eligible applicants include community schools, joint vocational school districts, traditional school districts, STEM schools or an educational service center-led consortium. 

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Applying in the CCIP

    How can I learn if my organization is a good candidate?

    Visit the Competency-Based Education page and use the “Self-Assessment Tool” to assess your organization’s readiness.

    The tool provides two frameworks for understanding transformation to a competency-based education system. Part I will help potential applicants determine their progress or capacity for moving from traditional to  competency-based approaches. Part II will help potential applicants determine where they are (or what is involved) in the process of competency-based design and implementation.

    Applicants must complete the Self-assessment Tool (Appendix B) and upload the document in the Competency-Based Education Pilot competitive grant in the CCIP at the time of submission of the completed application. Each partner of an ESC-led consortium, as well as the ESC, must complete and submit a Self-Assessment Tool and upload each document in the CCIP at the time of the application submission.

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    Where can I find a copy of the application?

    Visit the Competency-Based Education page where you can find a PDF copy of the application at the bottom of the page. Note: check back often for program updates.

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    Do I need to submit a letter of intent to apply?

    Applicants are strongly encouraged to complete an interest survey by 5:00 pm on September 30, 2015 to demonstrate interest and be eligible to enter the CCIP on October 1, 2015. If you have missed the deadline, email competency.based.education@education.ohio.gov to let us know you are interested.

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    How can I apply?

    Once the Comprehensive Continuous Improvement Plan (CCIP) opens on October 1, 2015 at 12:00 PM (noon), applicants will be able to apply through the system if they have a valid SAFE account and the correct “roles”. The Data Entry-Funding role will allow the individual to start the application, enter information, and submit an application as DRAFT completed. The Fiscal Representative role then will be able to approve the application. Lastly, the Authorized Representative must approve the final application. 

    For additional guidance on how to access the CCIP, click here

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    When is the deadline for submitting a Competency-Based Education Pilot competitive grant application in the CCIP?

    Eligible applicants will have the ability to apply in the CCIP between October 1, 2015 at 12:00 PM (noon) and October 30, 2015 at 4:59 PM.

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Requirements of Applicants

    Will selected pilot applications be exempt from any state accountability requirements?

    Selected pilot applications will be required to meet all applicable accountability requirements in state and federal law with the exception of the traditional full-time equivalent calculation. For purposes of state funding, any district or school selected to participate in the pilot program (either by itself or as part of a consortium) shall consider each student enrolled in the district or school that is participating in the Competency-Based Education Pilot program a full-time equivalent for purposes of funding under Ohio law.

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    Who is required to participate in the state work group?

    Each awarded applicant or member of a consortium must participate in the statewide collaborative work group. The work group will work to increase statewide knowledge and understanding of effective competency-based education strategies and to develop information, materials and other applicable resources for use across the state, districts and schools.

    This work will include, but is not limited to:

    • Assisting in the development of model competencies that can be scaled to statewide use;
    • Assisting in the identification and/or development of assessments (formative and summative) and tools to monitor learning;
    • Assisting in the identification and/or development of student- and pilot-level data and metrics to measure the outcomes of the Competency-Based Education Pilot program, as well as standards for collecting, maintaining and reporting data identified through the collaborative effort; and
    • Participating in cross-site professional development in addition to locally designed, pilot-specific professional development. 

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    What is the anticipated time commitment for those involved in the state work group?

    Details surrounding time commitment have not been determined. The department will work with selected applicants to communicate details and coordinate schedules. 

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    Where will the state work group meet?

    Details surrounding location of the meetings have not been determined. Once applicants are selected, the department will work with each organization to communicate details and coordinate schedules. 

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    Can grantees be required to use part of their award money for state work group related costs?

    Yes, grantees may be required to use a portion of their award to cover travel, per diem and other associated costs for the work group.

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Funding

    How many applicants are eligible to receive funding?

    Five organizations or consortia will receive funding to participate in the Competency-Based Education pilot program. 

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    Who is the fiscal agent of a consortium?

    The educational service center leading the consortium will be the designated fiscal agent and has the responsibility of assisting with the development and facilitating the implementation of the program on a contracting basis. 

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    What are eligible uses for the Competency-Based Education Pilot program funding?

    Funds may support planning, design and implementation activities as outlined in the approved proposal including, but not limited to, technology purchases (hardware and software), meeting costs, facilitation, travel, stipends, substitutes, learning management systems and virtual team platforms. Funds should be designated for cross-pilot collaborative activities and professional development as may be required by the Ohio Department of Education. Funds may not be used to purchase items or services that would supplant current levels of effort.

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    How much funding will each awarded applicant receive?

    Funding for the first two school years will be awarded in an amount up to $200,000 each year.

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    Can grant funds be carried over from year 1 to year 2?

    No, grant funds cannot be carried over from year 1 (July 1, 2015 – June 30, 2016) to year 2 (July 1, 2016 –June 30, 2017).  

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Selection and Awards

    When will the selection process occur?

    Evaluation of proposals will occur from Nov. 2-30, 2015. The selection and award of the five pilot sites will be made no later than Dec. 15, 2015.

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    How many organizations will be selected to participate?

    Five applicants will participate in the pilot program.

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    How will applicants be scored?

    Applicants will be scored for this competitive grant with specific selection criteria, which will be released on the website October 1, 2015.

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Implementation

    When do selected pilot programs need to be implemented?

    Selected pilot applications will be required to implement their programs in alignment with the timeline below. During that period, the state collaborative work group will meet and according to Ohio Revised Code, the Ohio Department of Education will evaluate each program.

    December 2015 – June 2016

    Planning Period

    July 2016 – June 2017

    Year 1 Implementation

    July 2017 – June 2018

    Year 2 Implementation

    Jan. 31, 2017

    Preliminary Report Due

    July 2018 – June 2019

    Year 3 Implementation

    Dec. 31, 2017

    Final Report Due

     

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    What are the requirements of selected pilots?

    The purpose of this initiative is to support efforts within Ohio to develop, implement and evaluate K-12 competency-based education systems. Applicants have a great amount of discretion in the design of their pilot programs, as long as they support the initiative’s goals, address the target areas and meet the requirements listed below.

    Selected pilot applicants will be required to:

    • Implement a competency-based education system;
    • Build community partnerships;
    • Tie-in to other state and federal initiatives;
    • Facilitate collaborative leadership;
    • Participate in state collaborative work group;
    • Serve as a competency-based education model site;
    • Engage in data collection and reporting; and
    • Participate in evaluation activities.

    For more information, visit our website and check out the application PDF.

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Other Initiatives and Questions

    Where should I go if I have a question that is not on this list?

    Email competency.based.education@education.ohio.gov

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    Will Competency-Based Education program be replacing the Innovative Learning Network?

    No, both programs will run concurrently.

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    Can my district apply for the Competency-Based Education funding and participate in the Innovative Learning Pilot concurrently?

    Yes, ten additional schools will be awarded the innovative waiver this school year. This program is available to all Ohio schools. Ohio law allows the superintendent of public instruction to approve up to ten additional waivers this year. The intention of these waivers is to provide flexibility to schools to use alternative, and yet still rigorous, assessments that may be more compatible with the educational programs of the applicants.

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Last Modified: 6/10/2016 3:11:53 PM