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Informational Letter #: 77

Policy Code: DD      


TO:                  Superintendents of Schools


FROM:            J. Duke Albanese, Commissioner  


DATE:             May 8, 2002


RE:                   Early Reading First Grants


The U.S. Department of Education has $75 million available to award nationally through a competitive grant process, the purpose of which is to ensure that existing preschool programs provide high quality early education for young children, especially those from low-income families.  Not all LEAs are eligible to apply for Early Reading First grants.  To find out whether your LEA is eligible as well as other information about the grant application process, access the U.S. Department of Education web page for Early Reading First at To access the eligibility list, click Grant Information in the site index on the homepage.  On the Grant Information page click the state-by-state list. 


General Grant Information

Approximate number of grants is: 175 in fiscal year 2002 (nationally)

Range of awards is: $250,000 - $1,500,000

Grants are for a period not to exceed 3 years


            Timeline For Early Reading First

Application package available: May 17, 2002

Pre-application due:      June 12, 2002

Invitation for full application: July 29, 2002

Full application due: September 15, 2002

Review of application: October 2002

Site visits: November 2002

Grants awarded: December 2002


            LEAs will apply directly to the U.S. Department of Education for Early Reading First Grants.    

If you have questions regarding this initiative or cannot access the information through the Early Reading First website, please contact: Patricia McKee at ERF@gov, or Tracy Bethel or Jennifer Flood by telephone at 202-260-4555.