Rural Low-Income Grant

The Rural Low-Income Grant (RLI) is a federal formula grant available from the State to any school administrative unit (SAU) that is not eligible for the Small Rural Schools (SRS) Achievement Grant but meets eligibility requirements. 

  • Eligibility List (XLS, 360KB). Click the "RLI" or "All" tabs at the bottom of this table to see which SAUs are on the 2014-15 eligibility list.
  • 2014-15 Grant Awards to be issued in September.

Program Goals

  1. Increase student academic achievement
  2. Decrease student dropout rates
  3. Improve teacher quality through staff development
  4. Support technology use in classrooms
  5. Increase parent involvement
  6. Support safe and drug-free schools


  1. The SAU cannot be eligible for a SRS grant.
  2. The SAU has 20 percent or more of the children ages five through 17 years served identified as Title IA poverty from the free-lunch data of the state School Nutrition Program or from Census Data for larger SAUs.
  3. All of the schools in the SAU are designated with a National Center for Educational Statistics school locale code of 6, 7 or 8.

Application Process

  1. Complete your Rural Education Information Form and provide to the State Rural Education office.
  2. The U.S. Department of Education will determine eligibility in May.
  3. The State will send out allocations in September.
  4. Application is due by Nov. 15.

Use of Funds

  1. Teacher recruitment and retention, including the use of signing bonuses and other financial incentives.
  2. Class Size Reduction positions using “highly qualified” teachers to reduce class size.
  3. Professional development for teachers only, including programs that train teachers to utilize technology to improve teaching and to train special needs teachers.
  4. Educational technology, including software, hardware and technology training (activities allowable under No Child Left Behind [NCLB] Title II-D).
  5. Parental involvement activities.
  6. Activities authorized under the Safe and Drug-Free Schools (NCLB Title IV-A uses).
  7. Activities authorized under NCLB Title I-A for Title IA-eligible students.
  8. Activities authorized under NCLB Title III (Language Instruction for Limited English Proficient and Immigrant Students).
  9. Administrative activities (audit, program administration or accounting for the grant), limited to 4 percent of the grant.

Note: Staff development for paraprofessionals and administrators is not permitted under “Use of Funds” (c) but is allowed in applicable projects under “Use of Funds” (d), (e), (f), (g) and (h) where appropriate. In addition, in writing projects under “Activities authorized under Title IA for Title IA eligible students” (g), be sure to include a statement to confirm that the project will be only for NCLB Title IA students.

Non-Allowable Use of Funds

  1. Funds cannot be used to satisfy meeting a state or federal requirement but can supplement the SAU’s basic support of a regulation. 
  2. Funds cannot be used for pure administrative projects (projects that do not have a relationship to student learning or improved teaching performances). 
  3. Funds cannot be used in supplanting any local fund costs.

Required Reporting

  1. Complete your Rural Education Information Form every January.
  2. Performance Reports due by Sept. 15 of each year.