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S. 1812 (110th): Mentoring America’s Children Act of 2007


The text of the bill below is as of Jul 18, 2007 (Introduced).


II

110th CONGRESS

1st Session

S. 1812

IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES

July 18 (legislative day, July 17), 2007

(for herself, Mr. Kerry, Mr. Akaka, and Mr. Bayh) introduced the following bill; which was read twice and referred to the Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions

A BILL

To amend the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 to strengthen mentoring programs, and for other purposes.

1.

Short title

This Act may be cited as the Mentoring America’s Children Act of 2007.

2.

Amendments to mentoring programs

(a)

Purpose; definitions

Section 4130(a) of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 7140(a)) is amended—

(1)

in paragraph (1)—

(A)

in subparagraph (B), by striking achievement of such children and inserting outcomes of such children by improving their school connectedness, decreasing absenteeism, and increasing academic performance;

(B)

in subparagraph (D), by striking and at the end;

(C)

in subparagraph (E), by striking the period at the end and inserting ; and; and

(D)

by adding at the end the following:

(F)

to foster character education.

;

(2)

in paragraph (2)(A), by striking or who lacks strong positive role models and inserting who lacks strong positive role models, is a foster youth, or has 1 or both parents incarcerated;

(3)

in paragraph (2)(B)(iii), by striking a partnership between a local educational agency and a nonprofit, community-based organization and inserting a consortium between 1 or more local educational agencies, nonprofit community-based organizations, and other partners, such as corporations, universities, or foster care group homes; and

(4)

in paragraph (2)(C)(iii), by inserting and successful after responsible.

(b)

Grant program

Section 4130(b) of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 7140(b)) is amended—

(1)

in paragraph (1), in the matter preceding subparagraph (A), by striking this subpart under section 4003(2) and inserting this section under subsection (d);

(2)

in paragraph (1)(A), by striking (particularly and all that follows through failure) and inserting , particularly children living in rural, suburban, or urban areas facing high rates of crime, gang involvement, drug use, dropouts, or youth suicides,;

(3)

in paragraph (1)(B), by striking clauses (vi) and (viii) and inserting the following:

(vi)

Encourage setting goals and planning for the future, including encouragement of graduation from secondary school, planning for postsecondary education or training, and participating in internships.

(vii)

Discourage involvement in gangs.

;

(4)

in paragraph (4)—

(A)

in subparagraph (I), by striking and at the end;

(B)

in subparagraph (J), by striking the period at the end and inserting a semicolon; and

(C)

by adding at the end the following:

(K)

information regarding the staffing plan and levels the eligible entity will use to monitor the mentor/mentee match over the duration of the match; and

(L)

information regarding the eligible entity’s sustainability plan, specifically how the eligible entity will meet the required match, which is—

(i)

in year 1 of the grant, not less than 10 percent of the amount awarded for that year;

(ii)

in year 2 of the grant, not less than 25 percent of the amount awarded for that year;

(iii)

in year 3 of the grant, not less than 50 percent of the amount awarded for that year; and

(iv)

for an entity receiving subsequent funding under paragraph (5)(E), in all 3 years of the grant the match shall be not less than 50 percent of the amount awarded for that year.

;

(5)

in paragraph (5)—

(A)

by striking subparagraph (B)(i) and inserting the following:

(i)

serves children with greatest need living in rural areas, high-crime areas, troubled home environments, or communities with a high rate of youth suicide, who attended school with violence problems, or who are foster children;

;

(B)

in subparagraph (C)—

(i)

in clause (i), by striking urban and rural and inserting urban, suburban, and rural;

(ii)

in clause (ii)(II), by inserting after organizations, the following: children,; and

(iii)

in clause (iii), by inserting after mentoring program the following: and sustain it for the duration of the grant and beyond; and

(C)

by adding at the end following:

(E)

Subsequent grants

In awarding grants under subparagraph (A), the Secretary shall consider entities who have received funding in a prior grant cycle for a new grant only if each of the following criteria is met:

(i)

Performance during the initial grant was satisfactory in terms of program design and numbers of children served.

(ii)

The subsequent grant will exclusively support expanded service to a new geographic area or target population.

(iii)

The eligible entity demonstrates that it is able to provide a 50 percent match to Federal funds for all 3 years of the new grant.

(F)

Policy on one entity having two grants at same time

In awarding grants under subparagraph (A), the Secretary may have in effect a policy under which an entity is prohibited from having 2 grants at the same time. However, such a policy shall not prohibit an entity from having 2 grants at the same time when the periods of the 2 grants overlap by 3 months or less.

.

(c)

Additional provisions

Section 4130 of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 7140) is amended by adding at the end the following:

(c)

Ensuring quality grants

(1)

Support for grantees

In order to ensure the strongest possible outcomes for children mentored through this section, the Secretary shall—

(A)

provide training and technical assistance to grant recipients, beginning in year 1 and continuing throughout the span of the grant;

(B)

track the mentoring practices and outcomes of all grant recipients throughout the 3-year span of the grant utilizing a robust online tracking and evaluation system; and

(C)

submit an annual report to Congress detailing the number of children served by grant recipients and the outcomes achieved for those children.

(2)

Research on school-based mentoring

In order to ensure that grant recipients have access to the most current research-based knowledge about building and carrying out strong and effective mentoring programs, the Secretary shall do the following:

(A)

Consult with leading mentoring organizations and researchers, including the Federal Mentoring Council and the National Mentoring Working Group, to determine priorities for research on school-based mentoring and appropriate research design, with consideration for—

(i)

determining the ideal school environments in which school-based mentoring succeeds;

(ii)

identifying techniques for matching children with specific characteristics (such as age, academic situation, risk factors) with the most appropriate mentoring models;

(iii)

determining the ideal infrastructure needed to foster the expansion of school-based mentoring in a sustainable way; and

(iv)

refining best practices, match activities, and a range of mentoring models to lead to the best possible outcomes for children.

(B)

Issue grants or contracts to high-quality research entities to perform research on the priorities identified in subparagraph (A), with the following criteria:

(i)

The proposed research design shall meet accepted standards within the academic community.

(ii)

All research results and findings shall be widely disseminated to existing grantees and to the larger mentoring community.

(C)

Issue grants or contracts only if amount appropriated for each fiscal year under subsection (d)(1) exceeds $50,000,000.

(d)

Authorization of appropriations; reservation of certain amounts

(1)

Authorization

There are authorized to be appropriated to carry out this section $100,000,000 for fiscal year 2008 and such sums as may be necessary for each succeeding fiscal year.

(2)

Reservations

Each fiscal year, the Secretary shall reserve—

(A)

not more than 5 percent of the amount appropriated for that fiscal year under paragraph (1) for expenditure on support for grantees as authorized by subsection (c)(1); and

(B)

not more than 10 percent of the amount appropriated for that fiscal year under paragraph (1) for expenditure on research as authorized by subsection (c)(2).

.

(d)

Revisions to other education programs

(1)

Inclusion of mentoring for minority programs

(A)

Section 7121(c)(1) of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 7441(c)(1)) is amended—

(i)

in subparagraph (E), by inserting , including mentoring, after programs and projects; and

(ii)

in subparagraph (J), by inserting , including mentoring, after programs.

(B)

Section 7205(a)(3) of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 7515(a)(3)) is amended—

(i)

in subparagraph (H)(ii), by inserting , including mentoring after programs; and

(ii)

in subparagraph (I)(iii), by inserting , mentoring, after counseling.

(C)

Section 7304(a)(2)(P) of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 7544(a)(2)(P)) is amended by inserting or mentoring programs after program.

(2)

Transition services

Section 1418(a)(2)(C) of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 6438(a)(2)(C)) is amended—

(A)

in clause (iv), by striking and at the end;

(B)

in clause (v), by striking the period at the end and inserting ; and; and

(C)

by adding at the end the following:

(vi)

youth mentoring programs.

.

(3)

National safe and drug-free schools programs

Section 4121(a)(2) of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 7131(a)(2)) is amended—

(A)

in subparagraph (C), by striking and at the end;

(B)

in subparagraph (D), by adding and at the end; and

(C)

by adding at the end the following:

(E)

school and community-based mentoring programs;

.