Code of the District of Columbia

§ 38–2254. The Program at District university grantees.

(a)(1) OSSE shall establish and administer a competitive grant program to provide "grow your own" teacher preparation support grants ("grants") to eligible universities or colleges located in the District for the purposes of educating, training, and providing financial support to District residents pursuing a pathway to teacher licensure or certification described in § 38-2252(b)(2) at the university or college.

(2) No later than April 30, 2022, and annually thereafter, subject to the availability of funds, OSSE shall award at least 2 grants totaling not less than $550,000 per year for the purposes described in paragraph (1) of this subsection. At least one grant shall be for the baccalaureate degree pathway described in § 38-2252(b)(2)(A), and at least one grant shall be for the paraprofessional degree pathway described in § 38-2252(b)(2)(B). OSSE may award a baccalaureate degree pathway grant and a paraprofessional pathway grant to the same university or college.

(3) OSSE may award the grants on a multi-year basis; provided, that no grant shall be for longer than 5 years.

(4) OSSE may consider the cost of attendance at a particular university or college in determining how much funding to award to each grantee.

(b) To be eligible for a grant, an applicant shall:

(1) Be an accredited university or college that has a physical campus in the District;

(2) Offer a baccalaureate or master's degree in education or teaching;

(3) Have an education program that includes at least one year of residency or student teaching for all participants; and

(4) Demonstrate that its students pursuing degrees in education or teaching consistently and successfully attain the following benchmarks:

(A) Graduate within 5 years with a baccalaureate or master's degree in education or teaching;

(B) Pass the PRAXIS examination;

(C) Obtain licensure by OSSE, if hired as a DCPS teacher;

(D) Be hired by an LEA within one-year of graduating; and

(E) Remain employed as a licensed or certified teacher at an LEA for at least 3 years.

(c) Each District university grantee shall:

(1) Use the grant to pay for Program participants' tuition, required academic fees, bootcamp preparation or training academies, required examination fees, and book and supply costs;

(2) Commit to paying, on behalf of Program participants, 100% of any remaining tuition, required academic fees, required examination fees, and book and supply costs not covered by the grant;

(3) Ensure the design and use of a teacher development plan for each Program participant, consistent with the requirements of subsection (d) of this section;

(4) Provide extensive mentorship and academic support to Program participants enrolled in its institution, including continued mentorship during the first 2 years after a Program participant is hired by a LEA as a teacher;

(5) Provide licensure examination support to all Program participants enrolled in its university or college;

(6) Execute a memorandum of understanding ("MOU") with an LEA or LEAs, consistent with the requirements of subsection (e) of this section, to facilitate participation in the Program and the hiring of Program participants;

(7) Assist Program participants in obtaining employment at an LEA if the Program participant meets all of the employment criteria set by the LEA; and

(8) Submit proof of each Program participant's progress to OSSE on a cycle, and in a manner, prescribed by OSSE.

(d)(1) The teacher development plan required pursuant to subsection (c)(3) of this section shall:

(A) Specify how the Program participant will attain the credentials or degree necessary to meet OSSE teacher licensure requirements or the certification requirements set forth by a public charter school LEA if the Program participant anticipates teaching at a District public charter school; and

(B) Identify one or more tools to be used to assess a Program participant's performance once the Program participant is halfway through the participant's teacher residency or student teaching.

(2) If a Program participant is pursuing licensure or credentials through the paraprofessional pathway, the teacher development plan shall be developed by comparing the participant's prior experience and coursework with the District's teacher licensure requirements or LEA's certification requirements.

(e) The MOU between a District university grantee and LEA or LEAs required pursuant to subsection (c)(6) of this section shall:

(1) Identify, indicate the commitment of, and describe the role of the District university grantee and the LEA, including specific duties of each partner, in supporting the goals of the Program; and

(2) Specify the:

(A) Responsibilities of each party in the recruitment, screening, selection, and oversight of Program participants;

(B) Role of each party in field placement and student teaching and a description of the time frame each pathway described in § 38-2252(b)(2) begins; and

(C) Role of each party in selecting, training, and supporting mentors for Program participants.

(f)(1) Prior to April 30, 2022, and every 4 years thereafter, OSSE shall conduct an assessment to identify the areas of high need in the District's elementary and secondary teaching workforce, which shall include an assessment of the District's progress toward achieving diversity in its elementary and secondary public school teachers that matches the demographics of the District's corresponding student population.

(2) In issuing the grants authorized pursuant to this section, OSSE may give a preference to applicants that offer a high-quality education or teaching degree program in one or more high-need categories identified pursuant to paragraph (1) of this subsection.