In January 2002, the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB) was signed into law, reauthorizing the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) of 1965. No Child Left Behind has ushered in many changes, not the least of which is the revised "Title II," which places major emphasis on teacher quality as a factor in improving student achievement.
Title II-A, "Improving Teacher Quality State Grants" aims to increase the academic achievement of all students by helping schools and school districts improve teacher and principal quality and ensure that all teachers are highly qualified. This new program replaces the previous requirement to focus on professional development for mathematics and science (i.e., the Eisenhower Program) in favor of support for high quality professional development across all core academic subjects. The importance of math and science remains a high priority, but many other activities are now allowed as well.
Title II-A provides funds to State educational agencies (SEAs), local educational agencies (LEAs), and state agencies for higher education (SAHEs) on a formula basis, as follows:
- (Subpart 1) 95% to LEAs (distributed through the SEA) to support teacher and principal quality improvement;
- (Subpart 2) 2.5%, to SEAs, for similar purposes, but on a statewide scale;
- (Subpart 3) 2.5% to SAHEs, to award competitive grants to eligible partnerships comprised of, at minimum, an institution of higher education (IHE) (including representation from both the division responsible for teacher preparation as well as at least one department from the arts and sciences), and one or more high-need LEAs and/or charter schools.
As part of NC's appropriations under the act, the US Department of Education directly allocated over $1.2 million to NC's SAHE to make awards, through a competitive statewide "subgranting" process, to eligible IHE-LEA partnerships for quality professional development.
In response, The University of North Carolina, through its Division of University-School Programs, and in partnership with the NC Department of Public Instruction, is issuing this request for proposals, entitled NC QUEST (North Carolina Quality Educators through Staff Development and Training).
NC QUEST RFP Cycle XIII Documents for Download
Directions for electronically submitting or editing a Proposal