DRS Round 8 Funding Opportunity Announcements (FOAs) are in the process of being posted. From what we have seen so far, it looks like there are multiple formats of the DRS FOA. There are formats for Head Start/Early Head Start grants, EHS Expansion and EHS-CCP grants, and American Indian/Alaska Native (AIAN) Head Start grants. Make sure you locate the specific FOA for your service area.
The due date for most applications is Tuesday, November 12. This approximately 8-week turnaround is typical for DRS.
While the format requirements, content, and length of applications are mostly the same as the last round of DRS there are some differences. The following information is based on a DRS Round 8 Head Start/Head Start FOA.
Pre-application webinars. OHS is conducting two pre-application webinars. Participation is voluntary. Registration will be available on Monday, September 16 on the website for OHS Funding Opportunities. Pre-application webinars were not provided in past rounds of DRS.
Requests to supplement existing grant awards. Applicants may now request to supplement an existing Head Start grant with an award under the FOA.
Breach of confidentiality. Language was added about breach of confidentiality, stating that a breach of confidentiality during pre-award discussions may jeopardize the final award decision.
Under-enrollment. Under-enrollment must now be addressed in the proposal narrative.
Current Head Start, Early Head Start, or EHS-CC Partnership grantees must also include a description of any ongoing under-enrollment, including being designated as chronically under-enrolled by the OHS, in accordance with Section 641A(h)(5) of the Head Start Act, if applicable. Applicants may describe the actions they have taken to address their under-enrollment.
Language was also tightened up in other areas of the FOA. For example, with regard to “partners, contractor and/or subrecipients,” description of justification of line item budget costs, and protection of sensitive and/or confidential information.
While the changes from the last round of DRS are not substantial, we recommend a close read of the FOA. If your program is applying for a DRS Round 8 grant and needs tools to assist you through the grant writing process, we may be able to help. Please be in touch to learn more about our toolkit of resources that will equip your program with the information it needs to successfully draft and submit a competitive DRS proposal.