U.S. Department of Education is seeking help from PA Charter Schools
March 20, 2012
The U.S. Department of Education is seeking volunteer reviewers to read and evaluate grant applications submitted under their discretionary Charter Schools Program grant competitions. These grants are designated to assist in the planning, program design, and initial implementation of public charter schools as well as the dissemination of information about and best practices in charter schools. This is an opportunity to become involved on national review teams and learn more about these grants that may be of interest to your school.
The Charter Schools Program (CSP) at the U.S. Department of Education is seeking peer reviewers (field readers) to read and evaluate discretionary grant applications submitted under the program’s discretionary grant competitions. Serving as a peer reviewer is an excellent opportunity to contribute to our country’s education reform efforts by ensuring the effective allocation of federal grant funds to the most promising grant projects.
The purpose of the CSP is to increase national understanding of the charter school model and to expand the number of high quality charter schools available to students across the nation. The CSP provides financial assistance for the planning, program design, and initial implementation of public charter schools; evaluation of the effects of charter schools; and dissemination of information about charter schools and successful practices in charter schools.
Qualifications: The CSP is seeking peer reviewers with expertise in at least one of the following areas:
- State Educational Agency (SEA) charter school program grant administration
- Charter management organizations
- Charter school planning, program design, and implementation
- High-quality charter school start-up and expansion
- Charter school assessment and evaluation
- Charter school policy and research
- Charter school authorizing
- Charter school technical assistance and resources
- Charter school leadership and professional development
- Charter school administration and operation
Requirements: In addition to the expertise highlighted above, peer reviewers will independently read, score, and provide written comments for grant applications submitted to the U.S. Department of Education under the CSP programs. Expectations for peer reviewers selected are:
- The application review will be conducted electronically from the reviewer’s location.
- The reviewer must have access to the internet, a phone, and a printer, and have the ability to interact within a web-based environment.
- The reviewer must be available to participate in an orientation session by conference call prior to evaluating the applications and participate in daily conference calls during the application review (typically a three week period).
- The reviewer must provide detailed, objective, constructive, and timely written reviews for each criteria for each assigned application. These written reviews are made public, though the reviewer’s identity is not revealed.
- The reviews will be used to recommend applications for funding.
- Participation in panel calls, application review, and writing and editing comments is typically a significant time commitment during the three week period.
How to Apply: If you would like to be considered as a peer reviewer for the CSP, please email a copy of your current resume or vitae to CharterSchools@ed.gov. Your resume should clearly address your charter school background or expertise.
Resumes will be kept on file and panel reviewers will be notified on an as-needed basis. We do not yet have dates for competition reviews. Reviewers will receive an honorarium for their services.
Conflict of Interest: Please remember that if your organization intends to apply for a grant under any CSP competitions, you may not be eligible to serve as a reviewer. As a reviewer, you will have a conflict of interest if:
- You helped prepare an application, regardless of financial interest in the success or failure of that application.
- You have agreed to serve, or you have been offered a position, as an employee, advisor, or consultant on the project.
- Your personal financial interests will be affected by the outcome of the competition, which would include any family members, employees or associates of the project applying for funding.