New Michigan Grants for FRC

Thanks Marc. My read about the 50% matching, it is not a requirement, it looks more like additional information. I may be wrong, hope this discussion will help others too.

We have discovered that in order to qualify for any of this grant money, participation on the team must qualify for school credit (i.e. credit hours) for the students. That is what the district employee that attempted to apply for the grant was told by her contact at the Dept of Education in Lansing. She made repeated attempts to clarify this, without success. As our team is not run under or connected with any day-school classes, there is no way to give students credit for participation at this time.

Has anyone else run into this?

There’s no way to jump through all the hoops to give students credit for this year, but we are exploring getting this changed for next year.

Dear CD,

  1. sdaustin - I would contact Gail Albert, president of FIRST of Michigan for help. Personally, I think the person you spoke with at the Michigan Department of Education is not correct and I would obtain her name for reference. If you think about it, that would most likely disallow nearly every team in Michigan and I don’t think that was the intent of the MDE grant.

  2. The Michigan Grant information has been modified to read the following:

The RFP has been updated – the third item down on http://www.techplan.org/rdi/
Direct link: http://www.techplan.org/downloads/all_user_files/finalfirstroboticsmemo10-25_20131025_162758_3.pdf

Ann-Marie Smith
Education Technology Specialist
Office of Education Improvement and Innovation
Michigan Department of Education
517-335-2775

If you run into any snags at all please contact me immediately.

Gail Alpert
248 425-4148

Or Ann Marie Smith at the Michigan Dept of ED
517-335-2775

Quick update:

We were finally able to apply for the grant. Many thanks to Gail and Ann Marie for their help.

The sticking point was that the grant states that the district has to be “willing” to offer students credit (elective, independent study, etc.) for participation on the team. For our district, this meant getting the curriculum director on board before the administration would apply for the grant. Thankfully, she was all for it.

Now we cross our fingers and wait…

Today is the big day! Can’t wait to see how many great teams got helped out!

Is this the list of teams that received funding?

Yes - That is the list

This is what it looks like:

Rookies: $9,000
Veterans: $6,500
FTC: $1,500

Happy to see so many teams great helped out like that! I know we’ll be using that money as a great help!!

Dear CD,

Michigan Grant Teams that attended the MSC event were reimbursed 8/11 of the $4000 registration fee on May 20th via state aid. The remaining amounts are returning June 20th, July 21st and August 20th.

Did you have a sponsor pay your MSC event fee? Do you know what account your local finance folks placed the state aid reimbursement for said sponsor? Was it in your local team account?

Dear CD,

Does this mean that Michigan has a second year of MDE grants (copied
and pasted from State of Michigan website - see second part 99H)?

STATE OF MICHIGAN 97TH LEGISLATURE REGULAR SESSION OF 2014
Introduced by Rep. Haveman
ENROLLED HOUSE BILL No. 4295
AN ACT to amend 1979 PA 94, entitled “An act to make appropriations to aid in the support of the public schools, the intermediate school districts, community colleges, and public universities of the state; to make appropriations for
certain other purposes relating to education; to provide for the disbursement

Sec. 99h. (1) From the appropriation in section 11, there is allocated an amount not to exceed $3,000,000.00 for
2013-2014 for competitive grants to districts that provide pupils in grades 7 to 12 with expanded opportunities to
improve mathematics, science, and technology skills by participating in events hosted by a science and technology
development program known as FIRST (for inspiration and recognition of science and technology) robotics.
(2) A district applying for a FIRST tech challenge or FIRST robotics competition program grant shall submit an
application in a form and manner determined by the department. To be eligible for a grant, a district shall demonstrate
in its application that the district has established a partnership for the purposes of the FIRST program with at least
1 sponsor, business entity, higher education institution, or technical school.
(3) The department shall distribute the grant funding under this section for the following purposes:
(a) Except as otherwise provided in subparagraph (iii), an amount estimated at $1,000,000.00 for grants to districts
to pay for stipends of $1,500.00 for 1 coach per team, distributed as follows:
(i) Not more than 500 stipends for coaches of high school teams, including existing teams.
(ii) Not more than 100 stipends for coaches of middle school or junior high teams, including existing teams.
(iii) If the requests for stipends exceed the numbers of stipends allowed under subparagraphs (i) and (ii), and if
there is funding remaining unspent under subdivisions (b) and ©, the department shall use that remaining unspent
funding for grants to districts to pay for additional stipends in a manner that expands the geographical distribution of
teams.
(b) An amount estimated at $1,000,000.00 for grants to districts for event registrations, materials, travel costs, and
other expenses associated with the preparation for and attendance at FIRST tech challenge and FIRST robotics
competitions. Each grant recipient shall provide a local match from other private or local funds for the funds received
under this subdivision equal to at least 50% of the costs of participating in an event. The department shall set maximum
grant amounts under this subdivision in a manner that maximizes the number of teams that will be able to receive
funding.
© An amount estimated at $1,000,000.00 for grants to districts for awards to teams that advance to the state and
world championship competitions. The department shall determine an equal amount per team for those teams that
advance to the state championship and a second equal award amount to those teams that advance to the world
championship.
(4) The funds allocated under this section are a work project appropriation, and any unexpended funds for 2013-2014
are carried forward into 2014-2015. The purpose of the work project is to continue to implement the projects described
under subsection (1). The estimated completion date of the work project is September 30, 2016.