The Title III State Formula Grant Program, administered by the Office of Elementary and Secondary Education (OESE), is designed to improve the education of English learners (ELs, also referred to as limited English proficient children and youth, or LEPs). The grants help ELs acquire English language proficiency while also meeting challenging state academic content and student academic achievement standards.
To be eligible to receive Title III funds, a state must submit its plans to the U.S. Department of Education. Within its plan, a state must do the following:
Describe how it will establish standards and objectives for raising the level of English proficiency.
Ensure that subgrantees use Title III funds to expand or enhance high-quality language instruction educational programs (LIEPs).
Coordinate its Title III program and activities with other educational programs and activities.
Hold subgrantees accountable for meeting Title III annual measurable achievement objectives (AMAOs).
Carry out other activities stipulated in the Title III legislation.
The state educational agency (SEA) receives funds for Title III State Formula and Immigrant Children and Youth Grant programs based on the number of ELs and immigrant children and youth in the state, with each SEA receiving at least $500,000 for the Title III State Formula Grant program. Title III requires use of data that will yield the most accurate, up-to-date numbers of such children and youth; currently, that data comes from the U.S. Census Bureau’s American Community Survey.
The SEA reserves a small percentage of its grant to carry out state-level activities and uses the rest to make subgrants to individual local educational agencies (LEAs) or to consortia. LEAs, and the schools within them, use the funds to implement programs designed to help EL students achieve both English language proficiency and academic standards in reading/language arts, mathematics, and science. Approaches and methodologies used must be based on scientifically based research. LEAs may develop and implement new language instruction programs and expand or enhance existing programs. LEAs also may implement school-wide programs within individual schools or implement system-wide programs to restructure, reform, or upgrade all programs, activities, or operations related to the education of their EL students.