P. O. BOX 2120

November 5, 1999


TO: Division Superintendents
FROM: Paul D. Stapleton
Superintendent of Public Instruction
SUBJECT: Availability of Local Education Partnership Funds to School Divisions

As you may recall, Virginia is receiving $33.6 million in 
federal school-to-work funds between 1998 and 2002.  These 
funds are administered by the Virginia Business-Education 
Partnership (VBEP), a program of the office of the 
Secretary of Education, Wilbert Bryant.

Most of these grant funds are being awarded to school 
divisions through three-year Local Partnership Grants.  
Earlier this year, just over $6.6 million in first-year 
funds was awarded to 40 partnerships involving 47 school 
divisions during the first round of Local Partnership Grant 

Funding is provided as short-term "seed capital" to support 
state and local education reform efforts that involve the 
community through education partnerships to improve 
students' school-based learning, work-based learning, and 
related activities.

In early November, the superintendents of school divisions 
that have not yet received a Local Partnership Grant will 
receive a Request for Proposals (RFP) for the second round 
of Local Partnership Grants.  Nearly $7.7 million is 
available.  Every school division that has not yet received 
a Local Partnership Grant and submits an application that 
meets the requirements will receive a grant during this 
competition.  School divisions can apply individually or 
join other divisions in submitting a regional partnership 

Grant amounts will be based on the student population of 
the area served as well as the general quality of the 
proposal.  Estimated funding per student for each year of 
the grant will be $11 in year one, $8.25 in year two, and 
$5.50 in year three.  The minimum grant amount, however, 
will be $30,000, regardless of a school division's student 
population.  Each grant also has a matching requirement of 
50 percent in year one, 75 percent in year two, and 100 
percent in year three.  (The awards of current grantees 
receiving less than $30,000 will be adjusted and increased 
when their grants are continued in the spring.)

The Request for Proposals will be released in early 
November with a 90-day period for submissions.  School 
division superintendents will be sent the application 
packet, and background materials are also being sent to 
school board members.  Pre-application workshops are also 
being planned and information about those workshops will be 
included with the application materials.

Mr. Ronald Hedlund, Executive Director of VBEP, has 
informed me that, in broad terms, school-to-work funds can 
be used to promote and finance local partnerships that are 
designed to achieve the following objectives:

*       Support increased student achievement of the 
        Virginia Standards of Learning;
*       Promote student internships and other after-
        school work or mentoring experiences that support 
        academic achievement and career exploration;
*       Strengthen vocational and technical course 
        offerings for students who choose them;
*       Increase parental involvement in their children's 
        schools and education; and
*       Facilitate student access to postsecondary 
        education or training opportunities of a 
        student's choice.

Local school boards and school divisions are being 
encouraged to develop and implement proposals that can best 
serve their students in the context of the Commonwealth's 
overall education reform goals.

Local Partnership Grant materials, as well as other 
information about VBEP, are available at VBEP's website at  If you have any questions about the grant 
program, please call Mr. Hedlund at (804) 692-0244, ext.