Programs that received a determination letter for the upcoming round of DRS will only be required to compete for funding if it would also be required to compete under the revised conditions. It is important to note, even if your program is released from its original determination to compete, it might still be in DRS. This could happen if your original determination doesn’t meet the new conditions, but in the meantime, you’ve met the conditions in a different category.
Here’s an example. Your program was in DRS because it fell into the lowest 10% of CLASS scores. It’s scores are above the new competitive thresholds, and your program is no longer required to compete because of CLASS. But, after your program received its original determination, it also received two deficiencies. It is now meeting the new Deficiency Condition. Your program will be required to compete, because even though it is released from its original determination (CLASS), it is meeting a different condition of DRS (Deficiency).
For programs that received a determination letter for the upcoming round of DRS, there are several scenarios they might find themselves in this fall.
If your program is in DRS because of the Deficiency Condition and…
- Has TWO deficiencies, it will be required to compete in DRS.
- Has ONE deficiency, it may not be required to compete in DRS. If no other new conditions are met (CLASS, Fiscal), it will not be required to compete. Your program could be required to compete if other new conditions are met.
If your program is in DRS because of the CLASS condition and…
- Has a score(s) BELOW the new competitive thresholds of 5 for Classroom Organization, 5 for Emotional Support, and/or 2.3 for Instructional Support, it will be required to compete in DRS.
- Has a score(s) ABOVE the new competitive thresholds of 5 for Classroom Organization, 5 for Emotional Support, and/or 2.3 for Instructional Support, it may not be required to compete in DRS. If no other new conditions are met (Deficiency, Fiscal), it will not be required to compete. Your program could be required to compete if other new conditions are met.
If your program is in DRS because of the Fiscal Condition…
- It will still be required to compete in DRS. The Final Rule retains this requirement from the current conditions.
OHS has already started to send redetermination letters to grantees either confirming their competitive status or notifying them of preliminary eligibility for non-competitive funding. Many programs will no longer have to compete in DRS and will instead submit a non-competitive grant application. These programs will have to report to OHS (within 10 working days) if they meet one of the new conditions of DRS prior to their award. In this case, their designation could change again.
Non-competitive baseline applications present an opportunity to leverage the planning that programs undertook to prepare for DRS. OHS has shared little information about if or how the non-competitive process might change or look different for programs that expected to compete in DRS. Typically, there is less complexity to a baseline application than DRS, though the requirements are very similar.
If your program is still required to compete in DRS, we are here to help. Foundations for Families provides support to programs in DRS through our Grant Writing Solutions. This includes comprehensive grant writing, grant coaching, quality assurance reviews, grants.gov submission support, and a DRS toolkit to guide you through the process. Contact us to learn more.
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