RFP - Frequently Asked Questions  

1.)  Q. Since we will be submitting a budget and narrative for 2014-15, will we know state money soon? 
A. Yes, we have submitted 2012-13 data match information to DWS and ADHE. We hope to have state funding to the field no later than January 17, 2014.

Update-Due to circumstances beyond our control, we have been unable to provide state funding information we had hoped to have to the field by January 17, 2014. We assure you that we are working diligently on this issue and will provide the field the state funding information as soon as it is available. Thank you for your patience and understanding.

 

 

2.)  Q. The RFP states the application and budget pages are provided as separate files; where are the budget pages found?  Thank you

A. You may find the 2014-15 Budget Pages at the following address: 2014-15 Adult Education Forms.

3.)  Q. On page 24 of the RFP packet is the Notice of Intent to Apply Form.  At the bottom of this form is a line that states Local Education Agency of Applicant Organization and a date line.   Is that a signature line for the LEA Administrator or does just the name of the organization go on that line?
A. Please have your Local Education Agency (LEA) Administrator to sign the Notice of Intent to Apply Form since the LEA is ultimately responsible for the administration of federal and state funds.  In addition, some LEAs may no longer be interested in serving as the LEA for an adult education program/literacy council. The Notice of Intent to Apply Form will be updated to reflect the new signature changes.

  

 

4.)  Q.  Page vi - It states in the chart that Correctional/Institutional funds can be used for students at any of the ABE, ASE, and ESL NRS levels, but on page xvi #14, it says it can only be for those below 8.9 grade level. What is the policy for this?
A.  Correctional/Institutional (C/I) funds may be used for ABE, ASE, and ESL students.  However, Direct and Equitable funds (D&E) and EL/Civics funds may be used to provide services to adults in the ESL levels and those that function below the 8.9 educational functioning level in reading, math, and language arts as determined by a standardized testing instrument approved the Department of Career Education, Adult Education Division. Page xvi question number 14 has been modified to make the statement more clear.

  

 

5.)  Q. It also states that GAE funds are for ASE Low and ASE High, but they aren’t limited to just those two levels, correct?  Our program gets very little ABE funds as compared to GAE and we serve a much higher percentage of ABE students than ASE.
A.   Correct.  General Adult Education (GAE) funds are not limited to ASE Low and ASE High educational levels, especially for those programs that receive very little ABE funds or those that serve a higher percentage of ABE students than ASE. GAE funds may be used to serve ABE, ASE, and ESL students.

 

 

6.)  Q. Page x - Item 1 describes how the cost per student is calculated.  Does “total grant” refer just to the total federal grant or the total grant awarded to the AE program which would include state funds also?
A. Total grant refers to both federal and state grant awards.  For example, if a program received $442,670 in federal and state funding in 2012-13 and served approximately 700 students within a program year, then the cost per student was $632.39.

 

 

7.)  Q. Page xi - Can the instructional staff (ft or pt) also fill the role of the Program Specialists listed in item B?  I understand that it says roles may be combined, but I am unclear on why it specifies that each grantee must employee 4 program specialists. Please clarify the purpose of this requirement.
A. Program Specialists can be full-time or part-time depending on a program's funding or needs.  In order to meet the requirements set forth by the Office of Vocational Adult Education and their National Reporting System guidelines, the state has identified four Program Specialists' roles as the minimum staff needed to operate an effective and efficient adult education program/literacy council.  The majority of grant funded programs in the state currently employ or have someone that serves in multiple roles as the director, Adult Education Reporting Information System (AERIS) operator,  intake person, and/or more recently, a career coach/career development facilitator.  In order to meet the federal charge of getting students college and career ready, programs should have specialized and trained staff to help students meet personal and federal goals as well as help transform adult education in the state of Arkansas.

 

 

8.)  Q. Page xii - The second paragraph states that new teachers are required to receive specific training within one year of hire.  Does this include part-time instructors?  Also it appears that there are 8 required trainings, if I counted correctly, which would be very difficult to schedule within one year even for a full time instructor.  Did I misunderstand this item?
A. The number of trainings and meetings a teacher is required to attend depends on their role and responsibility in the program. The professional development trainings that are required of new teachers within one year of hire include at least AERIS training 101, training in Learning Disability, and assessment training in TABE/BEST Plus. Trainings are scheduled throughout the year.  In addition, the AALRC and the state office offer regional trainings, which may also help teachers meet these requirements within a year. If part-time teachers will be using AERIS, instructing students with disabilities, and/or administering TABE/BEST Plus, then they should attend these required trainings.  These trainings are designed to provide teachers the knowledge, skills, and resources they need to be successful as well as to help increase student learning outcomes. Please refer to page xii of the RFP application for specific requirements of all staff.

 

 

9.)  Q. Page 11 - Why does the 2nd column specify Adults 18+?  Page iv defines adult education services as those provided to those at least 16 years old?
A.   Although Adult Education programs are allowed to serve 16-17 year olds, literacy councils are not.  Therefore, the age requirements for both entities had to be considered in this area. Page 12 is an optional narrative for those programs who would like to include further information, especially on 16-17 year olds.  

 

 

10.)  Q. Is there a form to complete for Intent to Apply or do we email our intent to this email address? Thanks!
A. The Notice of Intent to Apply Form can be found on page 24 of the Request for Proposal (RFP) for Competitive Projects 2014-15 grant application.  Your Local Education Agency (LEA) Administrator must sign the form and he/she or a designee may e-mail, mail, or fax the form back to us.

 

 

11.)  Q. How do you sign up for the grant workshop for REP 01/23/2014?
A. Applicants planning to attend the Grant Writing Workshop may RSVP by calling or e-mailing Alisha McCollum at (501) 907-2490 or 
alisha@aalrc.org.  Please note that the RFP will not be discussed at the Grant Writing Workshop.  The RFP application will be discussed in detail during the Bidder's Conference on February 5 and 6. (Reference: page xiv of the Request for Proposal (RFP) for Competitive Projects 2014-15 grant application)

 

 

12.)  Q. "Is there a an Intent to apply form we have to send in via email to you if we intend to apply for the D&E grant OR do we just send our name and that we intend to apply for the grant???
A. Please submit the Notice of Intent to Apply Form, which can be found on page 24 of the Request for Proposal (RFP) for Competitive Projects 2014-15 grant application, to the state office.  Your Local Education Agency (LEA) Administrator must sign the form and he/she or a designee may e-mail, mail, or fax the form back to us by the deadline.

 

 

13)  Q. On the Intent to Apply Form for the RFP, is the line above the Local Education Agency of Applicant Organization for a signature from the LEA?  Also, the current NTI President is retiring at the end of the month, can he still sign the form, or should the VP of Finance?
A. The Notice of Intent to Apply Form should have your current Local Education Agency (LEA) Administrator's signature on the form.  Since the President for Northwest Technical Institute is retiring at the end of the month, please have the VP of Finance to also sign off on the form so that he/she will be aware of the 2014-15 RFP competition.

 


14.)  Q. This will be the first time I have completed a RFP for Adult Ed funding.  Are the grant writing workshops and Bidders' Conference something that I should definitely plan to attend?

A.  Neither the Grant Writing Workshop nor the Bidders’ Conference are events that are required, nor will your lack of attendance negatively impact the reviewers’ view of your proposal submission. Please keep in mind that the RFP will not be discussed at the Grant Writing Workshop. The RFP application will be discussed in detail during the Bidder's Conference.



15.)  Q. Am I required to attend the Bidders' Conference?

A. Please refer to the question and answer above.

 

 

16.)  Q. Is the RFP that is due February 28th only for Federal Funds?

A. Yes. The 2014-15 RFP will determine eligibility of programs to receive federal funds, which include D&E, EL/Civics and Correctional/Institutional Funding

 

17.)  Q. On page xi, it discusses personnel requirements at Adult Ed centers. It asks for resumes for the administrator and three specialists. Where does this fit in to the RFP? Does it go at the end?

A.  Resumes must be submitted for any staff paid with adult education funds along with a job description.  The resumes must be submitted with the grant application and can be placed at the end of the grant application.


18.)  Q. On page xii, it says that new teachers are required to receive training in the following assessments….is this for full-time teachers only?

A. The trainings are designed for both new full and part-time teachers depending on their role. If part-time teachers will be using AERIS, instructing students with disabilities, and/or administering TABE/BEST Plus, then they would be required to attend the applicable trainings. 

 

 

19.)  Q. Does the Notice of Intent that we send to you have to be the original? I know we can fax or email it in, but does that have to be followed up with an original copy by mail?

A. It is not necessary to send the original copy of the Notice of Intent to Apply Form.


20.)  Q. I have looked over the use of funds for Correctional/Institutional, and I am still a little unclear on a few things.  We receive referrals from Probation/Parole to provide services to their parolees, criminal offenders who are referred to us from court as part of their sentencing (Smarter Sentencing), and residents who come from jail to our center for Adult Education services.  Are we eligible to apply for C/I funds?  Can these classes be held at our Adult Ed Center or will they need to be held at the jail or Probation Office?  Any assistance you provide will be greatly appreciated.  Thanks!
A. Correctional/Institutional funds are available to programs that serve students who are incarcerated within juvenile justice confinement facilities, prisons, jails, and detention centers.  Students who are free to attend classes outside of an established institution would be served using Direct & Equitable, English Language/Civics or state funds awarded to the servicing program.   Reference:http://www2.ed.gov/about/offices/list/ovae/pi/AdultEd/correctional-education.html

 

 

21.)  Q. Can I attend the bidder’s conference without my LEA? I see that it is not required to attend the conference so I was just wondering? 
A. You may attend the Bidder's Conference without your LEA Administrator.  A memo will be sent to the LEA Administrator requesting his/her presence at the Bidder's Conference.

 

22.)  Q. On page viii should the fiscal year be July 1, 2014 through June 30, 2015?
A. The Adult Education Division state office will not negotiate with the Office of Vocational and Adult Education on the Core Indicators of Performance for fiscal year July 1, 2014-June 30, 2015 until March/April 2014. Therefore, fiscal year 2013-14 is correct on page viii.

 

 

23.)  Q. On page xi it states that this information is submitted with Personnel Data Form.  So if the grant application includes staff already current, will we need to submit resumes?  Would we only need to do this with new staff listed on the application? 

A. Yes. A current resume is needed for all administrators, faculty and staff paid with Adult Education state and federal funds.

 

 

24.)  Q. Concerning the resumes and job descriptions, is this for part-time and full-time staff? Also, is this for staff paid with state and federal funds?

A. Yes. A current resume is needed for all administrators, faculty, and staff paid with Adult Education state and federal funds. Job descriptions for each position must be included (Ie: Director, Full-Time Instructor, Part-Time Teacher, Paraprofessional, etc.).

 

 

25.)  Q. If I do not know at this time who will be employed for next year, what should I do?

A. Include a job description and resume for any administrator, faculty, and staff member that the program intends to employ during the 2014-15program year, if the total requested funding is awarded. Resumes for any new employees can be submitted at the time of employment.

 

 

26.)  Q. On the Program Specialists on page xi, it states that all programs shall employ four Program Specialists, and then lists them below. However, in the paragraph under this, it states that Resumes for the AdEd/Literacy Council Administrator and the three Specialists will be included in the RFP. How many do we have to have? Also, it says that we can combine roles with written approval from the state? Who do I have to request this of, and will I have time to get this approval before my RFP is due?

A. In the listing of the four Program Specialist roles, the role of Instructional Specialist/Director is listed as one of the four.  In the following paragraph, the term AdEd Literacy Council Administrator is used in the place of the Instructional Specialist/Director. We apologize for the confusion. In order to receive approval to combine roles, please submit your request to Jennifer DeSilva by fax at 501-682-1706or by email at: adulted@arkansas.gov at least two weeks prior to the RFP submission deadline.



27.)  Q. On Page 18 it says the form may be duplicated. I have duplicated the table and have four sections per additional page. Also the page numbers change. Is this permitted? I already have some signatures.

A. It is permissible to have additional pages as outlined in the grant.  With this being said, the page numbers will change.

 

 

28.)  Q. On the Consideration 2A chart will the centers be given the entered employment, etc. from data match?

A. The current providers of adult education and literacy services will be provided a copy of the 2012-13 Table 5 information from data match.

 

 

29.)  Q. On the Line Item Budget Report for 7/1/14 to 6/30/15, with narrative, should this only include RFP requested Federal funds and not State funds?  Does the narrative have to be as detailed as when submitting budgets?

A. The narrative should only be for federal funds, not state funds and should be as detailed as possible.

 

 

30.)  Q. On Considerations 4, 5, 6, & 7 are we limited to one page answers?

A. No, in some cases, especially those serving multiple counties, the response may require additional pages. It is recommended that the questions are answered in complete detail.

 

 

31.)  Q. On page xi, it states that we must send in resumes for 4 Specialists in our program, but on the FAQs for the RFP one answer says:

“A. Resumes must be submitted for any staff paid with adult education funds along with a job description. The resumes must be submitted with the grant application and can be placed at the end of the grant application.”

So my question is:  Do we submit resumes/Job Descriptions for the Four Specialist positions or for ALL staff members?

A. Staff paid with adult education funds includes the four specialist positions and any additional employees. Resumes should be included for those being paid with adult education funds.

 

 

32.)  Q. Just making sure...Is the LEA Number on the RFP the DUNs # on last year's grant award pages?  If not, where could I find it?

A. Yes.  The DUNs number may be found on the 2013-14 grant award pages for those currently funded.

 

 

33.)  Q. Is there a way to duplicate page 18 in to the document? We had to use a typewriter last time and would prefer to be able to save it all in the same document. Thanks!

A. Page 18 may be duplicated as needed.

 

 

34.)  Q. On sending in everyone’s resume.  Do you want those with the RFP or after all money has been decided and we send in our final budget proposals?  If we send them in with the RFP and we don’t receive money as requested, some of those positions may disappear.  Also, do you want five copies of 25-40 resumes per center?

A. Staff paid with adult education funds includes the four specialist positions and any additional employees. Resumes should be included for those individuals that have been identified as potential 2014-15 employees.  Please include five copies of each resume with your application packet.

 

 

35.)  Q. On the Consideration 1 table in CI 1.6 the High ASE – do we still project a number in our total enrolled students?  And count them in our total number enrolled students? 

A. Yes.  Although it is no longer a federal requirement, the state uses the number in funding and Effective and Efficient (E&E) calculations.


36.)  Q. An addendum to the RFP states that the administrator should send in official transcript with RFP. Is that a transcript for undergraduate or graduate?

A. Please submit the transcript for the highest degree earned (i.e.-Bachelor, Master, or Doctorate)

 


37.)  Q. On page 5 or Consideration 2A. The ESL on Report 4.1 has Beg Low ESL and Beg High but on the report it has only Beg ESL should I added the two together to get my total students.  The Advanced ESL on Consideration 2A has Low Advanced ESL and High advanced ESL on report 4.1 it only has Advanced ESL it does not separated them out.

A. The number of ESL students should not be added together and is supposed to correspond to Table 4.1. Please use the following guide to report student enrollment based on Consideration 2A ESL entering educational functioning level and Table 4.1 entering educational functioning level.  CI 1.7) Beg. ESL Literacy=Beginning ESL Literacy (Table 4.1); CI 1.8) Beg. ESL=Low Beginning ESL; CI 1.9) Low Intermediate ESL=High Beginning ESL; CI 1.10) High Intermediate ESL=Low Intermediate ESL; CI 1.11) Low Advanced ESL=High Intermediate ESL; CI 1.12 (High Advanced ESL=Advanced ESL).

 

 

38.)  Q. Are all the initial budget forms that are requested in the RFP federal funds only??

A. Yes. For the purpose of the RFP, please only include amounts for federal funds.

 

 

39.)  Q. On the Rubric Consideration 2, it mentions past Adult Education Family Literacy Act (AEFLA) grantees.  Is that centers who received D&E funding in the past, or something else?

A. Yes. This refers to programs that have previously received federal funds through the Adult Education Division.

 

 

40.)  Q. 2 B Looks like it is for new programs only - Am I seeing it correctly?

A. Current providers should use AERIS data to complete question 2B, and new providers should use their records to provide the required information.

 


41.)  Q. Does the director's transcript have to be "official" or may it be a copy?

A. It is not mandatory that the transcript required for Attachment A be an official one.

 


42.)  Q. When writing specific services coordinated with partner agencies…. If we list that these agencies refer students to work toward the WAGE certificates and or GED program as well as basic skills etc. will this be accepted since the word GED is in the definition of coordinated services?  Ultimately that is the goal of the student entering at any lower level in most cases.  Our partner agencies wanted to be sure all referral of services they recommend be listed.

A. Please refer to the students acquiring workplace skills and basic academic skills. You may also describe students' achievement of a high school equivalency diploma.  If you are referring to business and industry partners, for the purpose of this application, please include no more than one.  Activities should coordinate with resources in the community such as one stop centers, job training programs, social service agencies, etc.

 


43.)  Q. Attachment A requires official transcript. Do I open the sealed envelope and make copies or do I leave it in the envelope and send only the official transcript?

A. It is not mandatory that the transcript required for Attachment A be an official one.


 

44.)  Q. I am applying for C/I and D/E funds, does that mean that I am required to submit 12 copies of the RFP? (6 for C/I and 6 for D/E)

A. An original and 5 copies of the complete application with requested attachments should be submitted. Refer to pages iv and v, which details submission requirements.


45.) Q. Question about the budget requirement on the RFP. In the RFP itsays to submit “Line Item Budget” for 2012-13, 2013-14, and 2014-15. However,the rubric says a “budget” and from the bidder’s conference it was stated tosubmit a “budget page”. I checked the FAQ, but I didn’t find thisquestion.  Do we submit an initial budget page AND the three line itembudgets that are requested.
A. Yes. An initial budget page should be submittedfor the funds requested for each type of federal grant.  In addition, the Line Item Budget forms forthe three years indicated on the Application Checklist at the end of the RFPapplication should be submitted. Only the amounts budgeted for federal fundsare required in the projected line item budgetform for 2014-15 accompanying the proposal.


46.) Q. Just to verify one moretime, the Line Item Report for 2014-2015 should only include funds asked for onthis RFP and not state funds, since the narrative will be only federal funds.
A. Only the amounts budgeted for federal funds arerequired in the 2014-15 projected line item budget  form accompanying the proposal for federalfunds.


47.) Q. Do the collaborationsignatures need to be in blue and original? That is what we are trying to dobut, I have a couple of them I'd like to fax for signatures. Is this allowed?In the past we have been allowed to fax the form for signatures but, I am notsure that is allowable this time.
A. Although the original signature in blue ink ispreferred, signatures from coordinating agencies can be faxed copies.


48.) Q. If our program enrollsat least 100 students or more each year we are not required to do the narrativeon page 4, right? Or, is there something we need to do with the cost perstudent calculations?
A. Optional narratives are not required, butprovide an opportunity for you to address questions included in the rubric, bywhich the proposal will be measured.


49.) Q. For Consideration 2A, dowe print and include our 2012-13 Table 5 also? And, should we insert them afterthis page or at the end of the document? Oh, Should this form be tabulating?
A. If you choose to include Table 5 as supportingevidence of program performance, either location is acceptable.


50.) Q. Do Considerations 1 and2 need to be separated by county, if we serve more than one county? I ma notsure there is anyway to pull that up. And, some of our students live inneighboring counties.
A. Yes. AERIS provides options for accessing thisinformation by county.


51.) Q. Does the NegotiatedBenchmark form need to be divided by county?
A. Yes. One cumulative form should be submittedwith one for each county served.


52.) Q. On Consideration 1: Thesecond bullet, does this mean my program data or what research says?
A. Please include information from both sources tosupport a needs assessment to establish measureable goals for participantoutcomes.


53.) Q.  Does the bottom of page 2 mean Table 5 for the current year? Idon't think I have mine. Can you send it? Also, there is not a column for"proposed making gain" . Should there be.I am looking at the"special note" at the bottom of the page?
A. Please refer to the program's most recentquarterly report. The information on the number of students you project willmake educational gains should be included in the narrative.


54.) Q. Am I required to addressConsideration 2A and 2B Optional Narrative?
A. Optional narratives are not required, butprovide an opportunity for you to address questions included in the rubric, bywhich the proposal will be measured.


55.) Q. On page 3, I am notclear as to what this page is asking for.
A. The information on page 3 only providesclarifying information for information requested on page 2.


56.) Q. Is a reconciliation pagedue with the RFP?
A.  No. A reconciliation page is not required.


57.) Q. Can I send assuranceswith my GAE grant?
A. Yes. Assurances can be provided either with theproposal or at the time of budget review after grants have been awarded.


58.) Q. On figuring cost perstudent, do I use totals for all grants? (C/I, D/E and GAE)? What year an Iusing 2012-2013?
A.  Yes. All funds received for the 2012-13 program year should beused when calculating the cost per student.


59.) Q.  I was talking with another exec. director of a literacy counciland comparing our understanding of different things on the RFP.  Then Imentioned that I first got all the attachments done for the regular proposal(debarment, inventory control, etc.) out of the way.  She asked what I wastalking about.  I told her my take on this whole process was that we didthe RFP AND the normal yearly proposal with all its attachments.  Shethought we only did the RFP.  I said I'd check and get back to her.  Ithink she was going to go crazy!  :) We do submit both, right?
A. Yes. Assurances (debarment, etc.)can be providedeither with the proposal or at the time of budget review after grants have beenawarded.


60.) Q. I would like to knowwhere in the RFP will state who is going to be the intake/assessmentspecialist; the instructional specialist/director; the Aeris specialist; thecareer coach/career development facilitator in my program.
A. Please include this information underconsideration 8. Please revisit page 10 of the rubric for requestedinformation.


61.) Q.  I am struggling with the charts that are associated with each ofthe considerations in the grant proposal. I understand that programs who havereceived D&E in the past use AERIS to generate the data you are requesting.We don't use AERIS yet, and the data that we currently gather doesn't reallymesh with what you are looking for. For example, the application often asks togroup students by Grade/SPL Levels. We don't use the TABE test right now, so wedon't classify our basic literacy students by TABE grade level.
A. The materials used to provide instruction mayprovide an indication of each students' educational functioning level.


62.) Q.  Can a program who does not currently receive D&E funding usethe optional narrative sections to explain our current methods and offer asmuch relevant data as we able to provide, in lieu of completing the charts thatare formatted for AERIS?
A.  No. the charts should be completed as accurately as possible.


63.) Q.  We are a small literacy council -- 1 full time and 3 part time.I am the full time.  Do literacy councils really need to obtain thecertification and have a Career Coach?  We only take our students to the9th grade level.  Also, since I am the only one paid with D&E funding,do you still need Sharon and Kathie's resumes and job descriptions?Please advise.
A.  All programs should have a person who fills the role of a CareerCoach in order to help students with educational and career planning. Career DevelopmentFacilitator  (CDF) training is providedby the ACE/AED free of charge to assist programs in meeting this requirement.Resumes and job descriptions should be provided only for all employees paidwith adult education funds.

 

64.) Q.  When is the RFP (Considerations 1-12 and Attachments A&B) dueand when is the regular grant(initial budget page, personnel page, assurances,etc.) due?
A. The deadline for submission of the proposal inresponse to the RFP is March 21. The complete federal grants will be due at thetime of grant budget defense which will be scheduled during the month of Mayonce all applicants have been notified of the outcome of proposal reviews.Please refer to the grant for additional details.


65.) Q.  Page 3 - is that for information only -- expository information.No response required.
A.  Theinformation on page 3 only provides clarifying information for informationrequested on page 2.


66.) Q. For the projected line item budget, do we need to include theamounts for ABE and GAE also or only fill out for D&E only? 
A.  Only the amounts budgeted for D&E funds are required in theprojected line item budget  formaccompanying the proposal for federal funds.


67.) Q.  Can we ask for rent from D&E?
A. No.Please use other funds to cover rent costs.


68.) Q. I have a question aboutConsideration #9.     Example:Mountainburg School District Service Provider refers 16/17 yr old students andPAT Referrans.       Is this what youwant?
A.  Yes. This would be an example of a collaborative partnership.Activities should coordinate with resources in the community such as one stopcenters, job training programs, social service agencies, etc.


69.) Q. Something isn't clearto me. Am I to come down to Little Rock on the 21st (or before) to personallydeliver and review our forms with someone there?  Or do we come down inadvance of the actual due date? Or do we mail them in, and wait to be notifiedto make an appointment? The previous director here indicated that a personalinterview was required.
A. Proposals should be submitted byMarch 21st either in person or by mail. Awarded programs will meet with theprogram advisor to review all budgets at a date that will be determined later.


70.) Q. I've read this in thedirections, powerpoint, and FAQs, it says to only put the funds we are askingfor (in my case just D&E) on the 14-15 initial budget page and line itembudget page.  So, no other columns will be populated and the Line Totalcolumn will be the same as the D&E column, right?

A. Thisis correct since your program only receives D&E funds