Funding under Preschool Grants supplements funds provided to States under the Grants to States program, which serves children with disabilities aged 3 through 21, including all children served under the Preschool Grants program. Most of the Preschool Grant funds must be distributed by States to local educational agencies to support special education and related services for children with disabilities aged 3 through 5. Preschool Grant funds that may be reserved by the State educational agency may be used to:
(1) provide support services;
(2) provide direct services for children eligible under this program;
(3) conduct activities at the State and local level to meet the goals established by the State for the performance of children with disabilities in the State;
(4) supplement other funds used to develop and implement a statewide coordinated services system designed to improve results for children and families, including children with disabilities and their families; and
(5) provide early intervention services in accordance with Part C of IDEA to children with disabilities who are eligible for services under section 619 of IDEA and who previously received services under Part C of IDEA until such children enter, or are eligible under State law to enter, kindergarten; and
(6) continue, at a State’s discretion, service coordination or case management for families of children with disabilities who are eligible for services under section 619 of IDEA and continue to receive services under Part C of IDEA. The State also may use a portion of its set-aside funds to cover administrative expenses related to the Preschool Grants program and Grants for Infants and Families program (Part C).
The Department has identified the following examples of specific projects that grantees might consider to achieve the objectives of the ARRA:
• Obtaining state-of-the art assistive technology devices and providing training in their use to enhance access by children with disabilities to the general curriculum or other appropriate preschool program activities.
• Providing intensive district-wide professional development for special education and regular education teachers that focuses on scaling-up, through replication, proven and innovative evidence-based school-wide strategies for preliteracy, language, and numeracy skills and positive behavioral supports for students with disabilities.
• Developing or expanding the capacity to collect and use data to improve teaching and learning.
• Expanding the availability and range of inclusive placement options for preschoolers with disabilities by developing the capacity of public and private preschool programs to serve these children.
• Hiring transition coordinators to work with children exiting programs funded under IDEA, Part C, Grants for Infants and Families, to ensure a smooth transition into preschool or other appropriate services.