Administering a Grant
Recipients of Quality Schools financial assistance are responsible for administering their Quality Schools projects in accordance with all applicable state statutory and regulatory requirements, unless they are superseded by federal requirements. The Department has the responsibility to ensure that Quality Schools grant recipients are carrying out their projects in accordance with these requirements, and to assist and support grantees in successfully implementing their project activities from start-up through closeout of the project.
All approved projects will need to be completed by June 30 of the year of the biennium in which they were awarded. For example, projects awarded for the 2017 Biennium must be completed by June 30, 2017. The Department, in its sole discretion, may grant an extension to this deadline if the project is near completion but will not be fully completed by the end of the biennium, and the grant recipient can demonstrate a good faith effort to complete the project on time and within the original budget.
Per sections 20-9-204 and 20-9-205, MCA governs the procurement of construction and purchasing contracts by all schools districts. These laws govern the procurement of services sought by school districts, regardless of their participation in the Quality Schools Grant Program. Districts receiving Quality Schools grant funds should be prepared to provide information to the Department about how they intend to procure or procured both grant administration and construction services, including but not limited to the list of vendors to be or that were solicited, a copy of any advertisements, a copy of the request for proposals, or the information detailing the scope of work if price is the only consideration, such as certified bid tabs. Such information may be requested as additional documentation to support a grant draw request for such activities.
Costs resulting from a “Cost plus” contract are not eligible for reimbursement from a Quality Schools grant.
The Department will schedule monitoring visits with each Quality Schools grant recipient to occur toward the end of the project period. A monitoring visit usually involves a visit to the school to review records, to inspect the school’s progress in completing the project activities, and to meet with school officials. The Department's liaison will contact the school staff concerning the timing and scope of the monitoring visit. After a monitoring visit, the Quality Schools liaison may provide written monitoring comments to the grant recipient. A letter will be sent the school officials advising the Grantee of any specific areas of concern and providing the Grantee an opportunity to take corrective actions to address any concerns.