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The summary below was written by the Congressional Research Service, which is a nonpartisan division of the Library of Congress, and was published on Feb 26, 2015.
Investing in Innovation for Education Act of 2015
Amends the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 to direct the Secretary of Education to award competitive grants to local educational agencies (LEAs), educational service agencies, and nonprofit organizations to support the school innovation efforts of public schools and LEAs.
Requires at least 25% of the grant funds to be awarded for projects in rural areas.
Requires each grant applicant to demonstrate that it has partnered with at least one private, nonprofit, community-based, or governmental entity that will provide matching funds. Allows the Secretary to waive the matching funds requirement upon a showing of exceptional circumstances.
Requires each grant to be used to address at least one of the following areas of school innovation:
improving the effectiveness of teachers and school leaders and promoting their equitable distribution, strengthening the use of data to improve education, providing high-quality instruction that is based on rigorous academic content standards and measuring students' proficiency using high-quality assessments that are aligned to those standards, turning around the lowest-performing schools, and any other area of school innovation the Secretary chooses. Directs the Secretary to establish performance measures for tracking each grantee's progress in: (1) improving the academic performance of public elementary and secondary school students, and specified subgroups of those students; and (2) implementing its project in rural schools, as applicable. Requires grantees to use grant funds to develop or expand strategies to improve high-need students' showing on those performance measures.