Like you, we’ve been hitting the refresh button more often than not to make sure we don’t miss the release of the Head Start/Early Head Start CFR 1307 Recompetition RFPs.

As of 7pm on March 28, nothing.

This set of FAQs was just released and while most of it is not especially new, many assumptions have been reconfirmed and there are a couple of tidbits.

From the calls we’ve been getting, the most pressing question seems to be:

Q: When will the Office of Head Start post the funding opportunity announcements (FOAs)?

A: Funding opportunity announcements will be released in early spring. Interested applicants are encouraged to sign up for email updates from Grants.gov to be notified when the funding opportunity announcements (FOAs) are posted. Applicants can visit www.grants.gov and click on “Find Grant Opportunities” in the red box on the left and follow the instructions below:

  • Click on “Subscriptions” at the bottom of the page.
  • Click on “Notices Based on Advanced Criteria”.
  • Type in your email address and the CFDA Number “93.600”.
  • Click “Subscribe to mailing list.”

Based on a quick read, this one seems interesting:

Q: Is it permissible for an applicant to require another entity or individual to agree not to compete for a Head Start and/or Early Head Start grant as a condition of being named as one of the applicant’s delegate agencies?

A: In the interest of ensuring a robust competition for high-quality, comprehensive early education providers, OHS believes that applicants should not dissuade other entities from applying for Head Start and/or Early Head Start grants. Therefore we intend to award bonus points in the evaluation criteria in the funding opportunity announcement for applicants who attest that they do not have a non-compete agreement in place at the time the application is submitted that in any way restricts or disadvantages another entity’s ability to apply for a Head Start grant on its own behalf.

BONUS POINTS – that’s new to us.

Please read the whole list.  They’ve addressed these questions:

1) When will the Office of Head Start post the funding opportunity announcements (FOAs)?
2) If both Head Start and Early Head Start grants have been designated for competition in a service area, will FOAs be released for both grants at the same time?
3) Who is eligible to apply for Head Start and Early Head Start funding?
4) When will applications be due?
5) Will current grantees that have been designated for competition be automatically disadvantaged under the evaluation criteria based on having a past deficiency?
6) In my service area, the HHS Grants Forecast indicates an “estimated number of awards” that is higher than the current number of grantees in the area. Is there a preference for smaller grantees and will all large grantees be split into smaller grants?
7) What happens if there is only one applicant in a given service area?  Will they automatically get the grant?
8) Is it permissible for an applicant to require another entity or individual to agree not to compete for a Head Start and/or Early Head Start grant as a condition of being named as one of the applicant’s delegate agencies?
9) Who will review the grant applications?
10) What are the projected dates of award?
11) If a Head Start or Early Head Start grant is awarded to a new grantee in the middle of a program year, how will the transition be handled?
12) Suppose an entity applies as the grantee and proposes to work with a number of organizations as delegates, including some organizations that need to improve the quality of the early education services they currently provide. Can the applicant include in the application a discussion of the strengths and challenges of the proposed delegates and the steps the lead agency is proposing to take to improve the quality of the services provided by the delegate agencies?

Thank you.

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If your agency has activated a ‘trigger’ and is facing recompetition – you might want or need guidance. In most cases, we can help you get through this critical period and, if we can’t, we’ll certainly help you find the support you need.

If you are a delegate agency thinking about responding to the upcoming RFP to continue to serve your children and families on your own, but are unsure about grant writing, give us a call.

If you are a community based, solid organization with your heart and management practices in the right place and think could do just as well or better on behalf of young children and their families, we can help you think that through and move forward if you’d like. Call us: 703-299-6570 or 703-299-6570      or email augenblick@foundationsforfamilies.com.

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