Literacy Programs for Prisoners


To assist persons incarcerated in a prison, jail, or detention center to achieve functional literacy. To reduce prisoner recidivism through the development and improvement of life skills necessary for reintegration into society.

General information about this opportunity
Last Known Status
Deleted 02/14/2008 (This program is no longer funded nor are there any awards being made.)
Program Number
Federal Agency/Office
Type(s) of Assistance Offered
Project Grants.
Program Accomplishments
Ten awards were made in fiscal year 2002.
National Literacy Act of 1991, Section 601.
Who is eligible to apply/benefit from this assistance?
Applicant Eligibility
A State correctional agency, a local correctional agency, a State correctional education agency, or a local correctional educational agency may apply.
Beneficiary Eligibility
Individuals incarcerated in adult correctional facilities will benefit.
Legal signature by a designated official on the application is required. Costs will be determined in accordance with OMB Circular No. A-87 for State and local governments.
What is the process for applying and being award this assistance?
Pre-Application Procedure
This program is eligible for coverage under E.O. 12372, "Intergovernmental Review of Federal Programs." An applicant should consult the office or official designated as the single point of contact in his or her State for more information on the process the State requires to be followed in applying for assistance. The standard application forms as furnished by the Federal agency and required by OMB Circular No. A-102 must be used for this program.
Application Procedure
Applications must be prepared and submitted to the Department of Education in accordance with program announcements and established deadlines, which are published in the Federal Register.
Award Procedure
Applications are reviewed in accordance with regulations at 34 Part 75. After negotiation a notification of award is sent to successful applicants.
Notice of application deadlines are published in the Federal Register.
Approval/Disapproval Decision Time
Approximately 120 to 150 days after deadline for transmitting applications.
Not applicable.
In the case of a multi-year project, funding after the first budget period is subject to availability of funds and the grantee meeting requirements of CFR 75.253.
How are proposals selected?
The following criteria are used in reviewing applications. Each criterion should be addressed. Points are awarded to the extent that evidence in the application satisfies each criterion: (a) Program factors; (b) educational significance; (c) plan of operation; (d) evaluation plan; (e) demonstration and dissemination; (f) key personnel; (g) budget and costs-effectiveness; and (h) adequacy of resources and commitment.
How may assistance be used?
Funds can be used to provide grants to State and/or local correctional agencies or correctional educational agencies to: (1) Establish programs that will assist incarcerated adults achieve functional literacy; or (2) assist in the development and operation of programs designed to reduce prisoner recidivism through the development and improvement of life skills necessary for reintegration into society.
What are the requirements after being awarded this opportunity?
Financial status and performance reports as required by the Department of Education General Administrative Regulations at 34 CFR 75.720 must be maintained. Specific reporting requirements are contained in the award document.
Periodic audits should be made as part of the recipient's system of financial management and internal control to meet the terms and conditions of the grant.
In accordance with Section 443 of the General Education Provisions Act, as amended by the Improving America's Schools Act, grantees must maintain records for 3 years.
Other Assistance Considerations
Formula and Matching Requirements
This program has no statutory formula or matching requirements.
Length and Time Phasing of Assistance
The total project period may not exceed three years. Renewals subject to the availability of funds.
Who do I contact about this opportunity?
Regional or Local Office
Headquarters Office
U.S. Department of Education, OSDFS 400 Maryland Ave., S.W., Rm. 4529, MES Washington, DC 20202-7242 Contact: John Linton E-mail Address Telephone: (202) 260-7007.
Website Address
Financial Information
Account Identification
(Grants) FY 02 $5,000,000; FY 03 est $4,968,000; and FY 04 est $0.
Range and Average of Financial Assistance
The average grant was $472,500.
Regulations, Guidelines and Literature
Title 34 CFR Part 75; EDGAR, Parts 74, 76, 77, 79, 80, 82, 85, and, 86 apply.
Examples of Funded Projects
In California, the Stanislaus County Sheriff's Department received funds to create a three-phase program that addresses basic education (GED or ESL), literacy skills, substance abuse issues, survival and reentry skills, parenting and family dynamics, interpersonal communication, anger management and reducing or eliminating patterns of destructive behavior. Also in California, the San Bernardino County Sheriff's Department received funds to increase educational offerings to incarcerated inmates and enhance support services available during and after the period of incarceration. The program works in conjunction with the San Bernardino County Regional Occupational Program and the Chaffey Adult School to provide vocational training and Diversified Occupations Training.


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