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Purpose of Program: The purpose of the Demonstration Grants for Indian Children program is to provide financial assistance to projects that develop, test, and demonstrate the effectiveness of services and programs to improve the educational opportunities and achievement of preschool, elementary, and secondary Indian students.

Background: For FY 2016, the Department will continue to use the priority for Native Youth Community Projects (NYCP) first used in FY 2015 to support community-led, comprehensive projects to help American Indian/Alaska Native (AI/AN) children become college- and career-ready. NYCP funding is one of many efforts across the Federal government to coordinate, measure progress, and make investments in Native youth programs as part of the Generation Indigenous Initiative. These efforts aim to address educational outcomes, access to the internet, the availability of teacher housing, Indian Child Welfare Act implementation, tribal criminal justice, and the suicide rate. The Department intends to award several NYCP grants for communities to improve educational outcomes, specifically college- and career-readiness, through strategies tailored to address the specific challenges and build upon the specific opportunities and culture within a community. Due to increased funding for FY 2016, the Department expects to support more comprehensive projects that implement multiple strategies. Given the interconnectedness of in-school and out-of-school factors that relate to student achievement and positive youth development, grants will support a community-led approach to providing academic, social-emotional, cultural, and other support services for AI/AN students and students' family members. Recognizing the importance of tribes to the education of Native youth, NYCP projects are based on a partnership that includes at least one tribe and one school district or BIE-funded school. We expect that this partnership will facilitate capacity building within the community, generating positive results and practices for student college- and career-readiness beyond the period of Federal financial assistance. The requirement of a written partnership agreement helps to ensure that all relevant partners needed to achieve the project goals are included from the outset. Finally, grantees' project evaluations should help inform future practices that effectively improve outcomes for AI/AN youth.