(FRANKFORT, Ky.) – The Kentucky Department of Education (KDE) is seeking public comment on its request for a waiver (called a Tydings waiver) to use carryover federal funds rather than returning them to the federal government.

According to 34 C.F.R. 76.709, KDE must return to the federal government any federal grant monies not obligated by the end of the grant carryover period. KDE has approximately $377,550 carried over from fiscal year 2013 Title I, Part A funding and will be requesting a waiver period of one additional year to obligate the funds.

If the waiver is granted, the Title I, Part A funds will be used to expand the participation of Title I school and district leaders in LEAD-Kentucky, a 12-15 month training program developed by the National Institute for School Leadership (NISL) and facilitated in Kentucky by KDE staff. The intent is to build leadership capacity through distributed leadership, increase recruitment and retention of effective leaders and improve student achievement.

Research studies show that student achievement is higher at schools led by NISL-trained principals. The LEAD-Kentucky program builds the capacity of school leaders as strategic thinkers, instructional leaders, drivers of change, creators of fair and caring cultures, and other leadership areas.

By increasing the effectiveness of school and district leaders through LEAD-Kentucky, the waiver will improve the quality of instruction in schools and will increase student achievement. The benefits of effective leadership in more schools and districts could help more students meet proficiency, gap and graduation goals, which could in turn push the state toward meeting state goals.

Once the waiver is approved, the KDE will use the Title I, Part A funds to offer the LEAD-Kentucky training at no charge to school and district leadership who work with Title I schools.

Any individual or organization may submit written comments on the proposed waiver through close of business on Sept. 12.

Send written comments on the proposed waiver to: Tara Rodriguez, Kentucky Department of Education, 300 Sower Boulevard, Fifth Floor, Sower Building, Frankfort, KY 40601; or email her at tara.rodriguez@education.ky.gov.