Pilot to Policy Grant: Advancing Systemic Equity


The Pilot to Policy Grant: Advancing Systemic Equity is a new, two year grant of up to $10,000/year. The purpose of the grant is to increase equity in educator preparation programs across the state, and informing broader PESB policy connected to cultural responsiveness and equity. 


In 2016, the PESB funded several "Special Projects" grants, that were focused on supporting preparation programs with promising practices in recruiting and retaining a diverse candidate pool, and developing equity action plans. The PESB used learnings from the 2016 Special Projects grants to inform the design of the Pilot to Policy grant. The application process for the grant will take place during the fall of 2017 (see timeline below) and grantees will conduct their work January 2018 - December 2019.

This two year grant will allow for deep, transformational work connected to racial equity, community engagement, and cultural responsiveness. Grantees will participate in a work group which will meet on a monthly and bimonthly basis over the course of the two years, and will undergo trainings, report on progress, share learning and provide feedback, and serve as a collective committed to demonstrating results and best practices around this work. Grantees will be required to track and assess results at the end of each year connected to the implementation of new practices, and the work group's report outs and sharing will also inform broader policy through PESB's new indicator based program review (IBPR). Grant funds should be used to support the implementation of new practices, as well as participation in work group meetings. 


Any Washington State Educator Preparation Program is welcome to apply. Each applicant should include a team of two to three faculty that will participate regularly, and must either include direct participation from the Dean or demonstrate a strong communication loop to the Dean and leadership within the program. Applicants will be selected based on their commitment to advancing systemic equity in their program and ability to effectively pilot practices that will inform broader PESB policy in relation to equity. 

A technical assistance session will be provided on November 2nd, 2017 for those interested in applying, and a timeline with key dates is included below.


Tentative dates for upcoming Pilot to Practice: Advancing Systemic Equity activities are now available. These dates are tentative and are subject to change:

  • October 16th, 2017: Application for 2018-2019 Released
  • November 2nd, 2017: Information Session via webinar (link to powerpoint). If you would like access to the recording of the webinar, please request via e-mail from chelsea.whealdon@k12.wa.us.  
  • November 20th, 2017 Pilot to Policy Grant applications due
  • December 11th, 2017: Awardees announced
  • Mid-January 2018: First work group meeting


Are indirect costs allowed for this grant?

No. The Professional Educator Standards Board (PESB) Pilot to Policy Grant does not allow for indirect costs. The funding is meant to directly fund programmatic strategies listed in the proposal. Funds may also be used for staff time to attend work group meetings, staff time to work on grant-related programming/efforts, funds for a consultant or trainer, and funds or a subgrant to a local school, community-based organization, or school district. 

Can we budget heavier in the first year (over $10,000) and less in the second year (less than $10,000)?

Yes. However the distribution of the $20,000 over the two years should be somewhat even. Programs can also budget lighter the first year and heavier in the second. We would not want to see variance much beyond a 70% and 30% different per year. 

Do you have to have participated in the grant last year in order to apply for this grant?

If our program did not participate in the grant last year to make the Equity Action Plan, can we get a template for our equity action plan draft?
Yes, you can request a template from PESB staff that programs used last year.

If our program did not participate in the grant last year to make the Equity Action Plan, and we put together and submit a draft of an equity action plan, will our proposal get judged on the strength of that plan even though it is a draft?
No. We understand that not all programs received resources last year for support to create an equity action plan. We are looking to see that all programs that apply this year are committed to creating and working actively from a draft equity action plan, and the intention is for that plan to get used and built in an ongoing way as grantees participate in the work group and implement their proposals.

Can we add or focus on principal programs within our proposal, or is the grant only for teacher programs?
Yes, this grant is also open to Principal Preparation Programs. While the application is largely focused on teachers, we would like to also emphasize that principal programs may be included in the proposals.

If a program participated last year in developing an equity action plan, should the program take the strategies from the Equity Action Plan and plug them into the proposal?
This two year grant should provide an opportunity for programs to focus on the implementation of their equity action plans. The strategies do not have to be plugged in and cited word for word - we recognize that these are active, living documents and some strategies may have changed. While that is the case, your proposal should demonstrate how you are building upon the work from the last year to develop the plan and implement the strategies within the plan.

Are competitive applications those that explain how they will inform IBPR?
No. What proposals demonstrate is what IBPR review will be looking at. What reviewers will look at is the strength of your strategies and how compelling the areas are in your proposal that address grant priorities. These priorities are already aligned with IBPR. The strength of that will help us determine what we see as promising practices that align with the grant priorities and IBPR domains.

Is there a requirement for data leads to attend the work group meetings?
The data lead does not need to attend every work group meeting, however there will be various needs that will come up over the course of the work group meetings that require some participation. This would require minimal involvement (attending a part of a work group meeting or a short scheduled phone call).

Is our grant more competitive if we have multiple letters of support from community partners?
No. We are only asking for one letter of support, but you are welcome to include more if you’d like. What we’d like to see in the letter of support is an authentic letter written by a community partner that demonstrates they are engaged in and understand the work that will be carried out, rather than a template that they are signing.

Can we call into work group meetings? 

Some work group meetings will be webinars. It’s crucial to attend the first four meetings in person as they lay the foundation for the work group.

Mtg 1: Jan. 26th - Friday/Full Day Retreat

Mtg 2: Feb. 14th – Wednesday – 10am-1pm

Mtg 3: March 7th – Wednesday – 10am-1pm

Mtg 4: April 18 – Wednesday -10am-1pm

Mtg 5: June 2018 - webinar (3 hour)

Mtg 6: September 2018 - In person - full day

Mtg 7: October 2018 - Statewide event, in person attendance required

Mtg 8: December 2018 - webinar (3 hour)

*2019 - 4 meetings in the year

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