Quality Improvement Preschool Grant

Grants to Utah Childcare Providers to
Enhance Programs for Low-Income Children

GrantWatch ID#: 177276
Agency Type:


Utah Department of Workforce Services (DWS) - Office of Child Care (OCC)


12/05/16 5:00 PM Electronic Receipt; and Postmarked by Date

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Grants of up to $44,000 Utah licensed childcare providers to enhance the quality of existing programs serving low-income families. Questions regarding this solicitation will be accepted through November 28. The goal of this program is to ensure that more low-income children are able to attend high-quality preschool programming, thereby increasing school readiness and improving academic performance.

The DWS, OCC will provide intensive support to build the infrastructure needed to become a high-quality preschool program. This support is intended to lay the foundation for participating programs to design environments that support development, foster relationships between children and teachers that facilitate learning, and support a child’s development of cognitive, physical, language, social and emotional skills. The end goal is to assist programs in making systemic, long term changes that will impact many groups of preschool age children beyond the grant period.

The current DWS, OCC grant opportunity is open to licensed child care centers across Utah that provide full- day, year-round services to low-income children ages 3 and 4. Programs must present evidence that some elements of high-quality are already present in the program.

Each program application must demonstrate that the program currently:
-Utilizes a system to carry out a preschool program on a daily basis with 3-and 4-year olds;
-Is familiar with Utah’s School Readiness Standards: Early Childhood Core Standards and utilizes them to help plan preschool activities;
-Employs preschool staff that have completed some training specific to teaching preschoolers outside of the center (a minimum of 30 hours of training must be demonstrated), with ongoing professional development opportunities available to staff;
-Provides a balance of teacher and child directed activities throughout the day;
-Offers opportunities for family communication and engagement activities; and
-Evaluates development of children and utilizes the results to plan learning activities.

Programs may request funding up to the following levels:

1) Year One:

Funding Levels:
-$22,000 per group of 12-15 preschool children with one teacher.
-$44,000 per group of 15 or more preschool children with two teachers.

All equipment and materials purchases, including curriculum, must occur in the first six months of the grant.

The maximum amount of funding that may be received at any one site is for four classrooms. All classrooms in the center may participate, but the total dollar amount will need to be disbursed equally amongst them.

When a program successfully completes the first year of the grant, funds shall decrease each subsequent year of the grant, as follows:

2) Year Two

Funding Levels:
-Funds are decreased to 70 percent of original award.
-$15,400 per group of 12-15 preschool children with one teacher.
-$30,800 per group of 15 or more preschool children with two teachers

No more than 15 percent of the total can be spent on equipment and materials. Any wage enhancements put in place in year one must be maintained or increased.

3) Year Three

Funding Levels:
-Funds are decreased to 35 percent of original award.
-$7,700 per group of 12-15 preschool age children with one teacher.
-$15,400 per group of 15 or more preschool age children with two teachers.

No funding is available for equipment and materials. Any wage enhancements must be maintained or increased.

Year One:
-Up to $22,000 per group of 12-15 preschool children with one teacher.
-Up to $44,000 per group of 15 or more preschool children with two teachers.

Year Two:
-Up to $15,400 per group of 12-15 preschool children with one teacher.
-Up to $30,800 per group of 15 or more preschool children with two teachers.

Year Three:
-$7,700 per group of 12-15 preschool age children with one teacher.
-$15,400 per group of 15 or more preschool age children with two teachers.

Contracts will be extended for a one-year period, from January 1, 2017 through December 31, 2017. There will be an option to renew the contract for an additional 24 months from January 1, 2018 to December 31, 2019 for programs that show significant progress and complete all reporting requirements in year one.

Programs must meet the following eligibility requirements:

-Maintains Child Care license in good standing. Good standing is defined as having no civil money penalties and less than three sited findings in the past year.

-A minimum of 18 percent of enrolled children’s fees must be paid for with subsidy dollars.

-Currently serves at least one group of children 3 and 4 years of age.

-Maintains a maximum group size of 25 children with two caregivers throughout the grant period.

-Classrooms that hold a variance or are otherwise grandfathered for a larger group size with licensing must reduce to 25 in order to participate in this grant.

-Program provides direct care to children year-round, Monday through Friday, for a minimum of 40 hours per week.

-Priority will be given to programs that provide services to one or more of the following: program’s operating in a rural county and areas with high concentrations of children at risk of remaining in poverty into adulthood. High concentration is defined as 25 percent according to Attachment F, IGP Map.

The following centers are not eligible to apply for this grant:
-Current or past recipients of funding through the School Readiness Initiative Act. This would include High-Quality School Readiness grants, Results-Based School Readiness contracts (“pay for success” contracts), or High-Quality School Readiness Expansion Grants;
-Centers that have paid civil money penalties to the Child Care Licensing Program or have had more than two cited findings in the past 12 months;
-Centers that have an owner or a partner with a financial interest in their program also working for DWS, or have a conflict of interest due to a spouse or other close family member that works for DWS;
-Centers currently suspended from grant eligibility, due to failure to perform under the terms and conditions of a prior grant administered by the OCC;
-Centers disqualified from receiving child care subsidy or any other funds from DWS;
-Centers not current on Unemployment Insurance reports and tax contributions;
-Centers currently under garnishment by the Internal Revenue Service or the Utah State Tax Commission; and
-Centers holding an Hourly Child Care Center license.

Questions regarding clarification and interpretation of any section of this RFGA should sent to the email address listed below. The question and answer period will close at 5:00 PM on November 28, 2016.

Responses to all questions will be posted on the DWS website at:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

Mail applications to:

Department of Workforce Services
Utah Office of Child Care - 3rd Floor
Attn: Vickie Becker
Quality Improvement Program Specialist
140 East 300 South
Salt Lake City, Utah 84111

And email to:

See the full text of this grant

USA: Utah

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