Applications can come from individual school districts or from partnerships of a nonprofit organization with districts or a consortium of schools.
To be considered, applicants must show that they have:
- narrowed achievement gaps based on race, poverty, disability, and limited English.
- exceeded NCLB annual measurable objectives for two consecutive years or significantly increased academic achievement for all NCLB groups.
- made significant improvement in other areas, such as graduation rates or increased
- recruitment and placement of high-quality teachers and school leaders.
- established partnerships with the private sector (including philanthropic groups), with the private sector provide matching funds to help bring results to scale.
- "expand their work and serve as models for best practices."
- "work in partnership with the private sector and the philanthropic
- "identify and document best practices."
(Sources: ARRA here --search for "SEC. 14007"--and a recent timeline from federal officials shared by Interim Commissioner Elaine Ferris.)