Thursday, December 13, 2018 from 1:00 PM to 5:00 PM EST
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Smithsonian, National Museum of the American Indian

4th Street & Independence Avenue, SW 

Washington, DC  20560


Virtual Event (via Adobe Connect webinar and/or toll free conference call line)

This is a free and public event. A separate email address is required for each person registering. Please scroll to the bottom of the page for the registration link.

Detailed instructions on how to access the virtual consultation, log in, access code, and toll free call in number will be provided to registered persons prior to the event. 


Phillip Roulain
Tribal Tech, LLC.

Announcing the U.S. Department of Education (ED) Tribal Consultation on the

Office of Indian Education’s State Tribal Education Partnership (STEP) program

under the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965, as amended

State Tribal Education Partnership (STEP) Grants Program


In accordance with the U.S. Department of Education’s commitment to engage in regular and meaningful consultation and collaboration with Indian Tribes, a Tribal consultation will be conducted by the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Indian Education (OIE), Office of Elementary and Secondary Education (OESE), and the White House Initiative on American Indian and Alaska Native Education (WHIAIANE) regarding the OIE State Tribal Education Partnership (STEP) program. Because FY 2019 would be the first grant competition for the STEP program under the revised program authority under section 6132 of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, as amended by the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESEA), defining and clarifying definitions in the 2019 notice would qualify for an exemption to the public comment requirements that govern many competitions at the Department.  However, in order to establish definitions, priorities, selection criteria, or requirements for future competitions under this statutory authority, OESE is required to undergo notice-and-comment rulemaking through the Federal Register.  Therefore, consistent with the Department’s trust responsibility to Tribes and our Tribal Consultation Policy, the OESE will consult with elected officials of federally recognized Tribes to ensure that their views inform OESE’s policy decisions related to the definitions, priorities, selection criteria, and requirements that will govern future competitions, including in FY 2019, under the current statutory authority.

Topics for Consultation include:

Section 6132 of the ESEA authorizes grants to (1) promote Tribal self-determination in education; (2) improve the academic achievement of Indian children and youth; and (3) promote the coordination and collaboration of Tribal educational agencies (TEAs) with State educational agencies (SEAs) and local educational agencies (LEAs) to meet the unique educational and culturally related academic needs of Indian students. The Department is particularly interested in hearing from Tribes about their interest in the option under the STEP program to create TEAs as well as continuing interest in supporting existing TEAs’ partnerships with SEAs and LEAs to administer and coordinate education programs. Specific topics for Tribal consultation will focus on the following questions.

1. Is your Tribe interested in grants to projects that support existing TEAs?

2. Is your Tribe interested in grants to projects that support creating new TEAs?

3. Would you prefer:

a. A competition that, in the same year, awards projects for both creating new TEAs and supporting existing TEAs to develop partnerships with SEAs and LEAs, with the understanding that projects for creating new TEAs are only for a performance period of one year and awards for projects for supporting existing TEAs are for a performance period of three years. The Department may not run a new competition every year for supporting existing TEAs;


b. Contrastingly, would you prefer, awarding projects that support creating new TEAs for one year, and then the following year awarding three-year projects that support existing TEAs, thereby alternating the awarding of each type of grant?

4. a. When partnering with an SEA or LEA, which of the following activities are you most interested in?

(i) Directly administering education programs (please specify which ones);

(ii) Building capacity to administer and coordinate education programs, and to improve the relationship and coordination between your TEA and the SEA(s) and LEA(s) that educate students from your Tribe;

(iii) Receiving training and support from the SEA(s) and LEA(s), in areas such as data collection and analysis, grants management and monitoring, fiscal accountability, and other areas as needed;

(iv) Training and supporting the SEA(s) and LEA(s) in areas related to Tribal history, language, or culture; or

(v) Building on existing activities or resources.

b. For projects that support creating new TEAs, what activities would be necessary for the success of the project?

5. Are you interested in grants to support other activities related to the coordination and collaboration of TEA(s) with SEA(s) and LEA(s) to meet the unique educational culturally related academic needs of Indian students? If so, which activities?

6. If you have received a STEP grant in the past, do you recommend making any changes to the required preliminary agreement?  (please choose one of the following responses):

a. Maintain the current requirements of the preliminary agreement.

b. Eliminate particular elements (please specify which ones).

c. Add new elements (please specify which ones).

7. What award size (per year) would be sufficient to carry out allowable grant activities for:

a. Creating a new TEA (only one year of funding per grant)

b. Supporting existing TEAs to develop partnerships with SEA(s) or LEA(s) (up to three years of funding per grant)

8. If you have, or have received in the past, a STEP grant, are there any activities you wanted to conduct but were not able to given the amount of your award?

9. The STEP statute requires existing TEA applicants to describe evidence of existing capacity as a TEA. How can TEAs best demonstrate existing capacity?

In addition to the discussion topics, the Department is interested in gathering information to support grantee technical assistance on effective strategies for informing and educating prospective partnerships on successful delivery of program objectives. For More Information Contact:   Tribalconsultation@ed.gov


There will be specific times for public comments for each consultation. If you would like to provide a comment in person, please sign-up in advance.  The “Public Comment” sign-up sheet will be located next to the registration desk. You may also provide written comments, by completing the “Public Comment Card” that will be available during the consultation or you may submit your written comment directly to Tribalconsultation@ed.gov. The deadline for receiving written public comments is January 13, 2019.


Tribal Tech, LLC is a contract service provider specializing in the support of Indian education efforts and provides logistical and communications services for activities essential to the mission of the Office of Indian Education.