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H.R. 4386 (115th): Fab Lab Classroom Modernization Act

The text of the bill below is as of Nov 14, 2017 (Introduced).


I

115th CONGRESS

1st Session

H. R. 4386

IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

November 14, 2017

introduced the following bill; which was referred to the Committee on Education and the Workforce

A BILL

To establish a grant program that encourages States to establish subgrant programs that encourage recipients to create, maintain, and improve digital fabrication laboratories, and for other purposes.

1.

Short title

This Act may be cited as the Fab Lab Classroom Modernization Act.

2.

Grant program

(a)

In general

From the amounts made available pursuant to section 9 for any fiscal year, the Secretary shall award a grant to each State with an approved application under section 3.

(b)

Grant frequency

The Secretary may not award more than 1 grant under this Act to a State for a fiscal year.

(c)

Award amount limit

No grant awarded under this Act may exceed $200,000.

3.

Application

Each State desiring a grant under this Act shall submit an application to the Secretary at such time and in such manner as the Secretary may require that shall include—

(1)

a description of the State’s proposed or existing competitive subgrant program;

(2)

a description of how the State’s program will comply or does comply with the requirements set forth in section 4; and

(3)

any other information the Secretary may require.

4.

Use of funds

(a)

In general

Each State that receives a grant under this Act shall use the funds to—

(1)

establish a program that complies with the requirements set forth in this section under which the State awards, on a competitive basis, subgrants to eligible entities; or

(2)

expand an existing competitive subgrant program that complies with such requirements.

(b)

Limitation; priority

(1)

Limitation

A State that receives a grant under this Act may not use any of such grant to pay any administrative costs associated with carrying out subsection (a).

(2)

Priority

In awarding subgrants under this section, a State shall use not less than 15 percent of the grant received under this Act to award such subgrants to eligible entities in rural areas, except that a State may apply to the Secretary for a waiver of the requirement under this paragraph.

(c)

Subgrant frequency

A State may not award more than 1 subgrant under this section to an eligible entity for a fiscal year.

(d)

Subgrant amount limits

A subgrant may not be awarded under this section in an amount greater than—

(1)

in the case of an eligible entity described in section 10(1)(A), $25,000; or

(2)

in the case of an eligible entity described in section 10(1)(B), $50,000.

(e)

Use of subgrant

(1)

In general

An eligible entity that receives a subgrant under this section shall use the subgrant for the purposes of—

(A)

purchasing equipment for use in a digital fabrication laboratory; or

(B)

providing professional development that relates to the incorporation of the digital fabrication laboratory into curriculum instruction.

(2)

Limitation

An eligible entity that receives a subgrant under this section may not use any of such subgrant to pay any administrative costs associated with carrying out paragraph (1).

(f)

Application

An eligible entity that desires a subgrant under this section shall, at such time and in such manner as the State that awards the subgrant may require, submit an application to such State that includes—

(1)

an assurance that the eligible entity will adopt a policy that any digital fabrication laboratory equipped using subgrant funds shall be used predominantly for instructional and educational purposes by students enrolled in one of the eligible entity’s elementary or secondary schools; and

(2)

a description of—

(A)

how the eligible entity plans to use the subgrant;

(B)

how ready the eligible entity is to purchase equipment for a digital fabrication laboratory;

(C)

the eligible entity’s long-term plan for the digital fabrication laboratory;

(D)

how the eligible entity will incorporate the digital fabrication laboratory into curriculum instruction;

(E)

how constructing the digital fabrication laboratory aligns with the eligible entity’s academic goals;

(F)

the extent to which the eligible entity plans to partner with local businesses and other community participants;

(G)

the eligible entity’s financial need;

(H)

how, if applicable, the eligible entity has utilized previous subgrant awards; and

(I)

any other information the State may require.

(g)

Matching requirement

(1)

In general

Subject to paragraph (2), an eligible entity receiving a subgrant under this section shall provide, from non-Federal sources, an amount equal to the amount of the subgrant (which may be provided in cash or in-kind) to carry out the activities supported by the subgrant, except that an eligible may use up to 5 percent of such amount for administrative costs associated with carrying out such activities.

(2)

Waiver option authorized

A State awarding a subgrant under this section may waive all or part of the matching requirement described in paragraph (1) for an eligible entity if the State determines that applying the matching requirement would—

(A)

result in a serious financial hardship for the eligible entity; or

(B)

otherwise be inappropriate.

(h)

Reporting requirement

(1)

In general

At the end of each subgrant period, an eligible entity receiving a subgrant under this section shall submit, to the State that awards the subgrant, a performance report that documents any information that the Secretary determines to be appropriate.

(2)

Performance report form

The performance report described in paragraph (1) shall be submitted on a form created by the State that awards the subgrant and approved by the Secretary before being used.

5.

Matching requirement

Each State that receives a grant under this Act shall provide, from non-Federal sources, an amount equal to the amount of the grant to carry out the activities described in section 3.

6.

State reports

Each State that receives a grant under this Act shall—

(1)

at the end of the 1-year period that begins on the date the State receives the grant, submit a report to the Secretary containing any information the Secretary determines to be appropriate; and

(2)

in the case in which the State does not receive a grant for the next fiscal year following the fiscal year for which the grant was received, submit a report to the Secretary containing any information the Secretary determines to be appropriate at the end of a 2-year period that begins on the date the State receives the grant.

7.

Evaluation

(a)

In general

The Secretary shall establish an evaluation program to determine the efficacy of the grant program established by this Act that shall commence 18 months after the first grant under this Act is awarded.

8.

Sunset

The Secretary may not award grants under this Act after the end of the 5-year period that begins on the date the Secretary awards the first grant under this Act.

9.

Authorization of appropriations

(a)

In general

There is authorized to be appropriated $10,000,000 for each of the fiscal years 2019 through 2023 to carry out this Act.

(b)

Limitation

Of the amounts appropriated pursuant to subsection (a) for a fiscal year, the Secretary may not use more than 5 percent to pay any administrative costs associated with carrying out section 1.

10.

Definitions

In this Act:

(1)

Digital fabrication laboratory

The term digital fabrication laboratory means a high-technology workspace that is equipped with computer-controlled additive and subtractive manufacturing components such as 3-dimensional printers, laser engravers, computer numerical control routers, and plasma cutters.

(2)

Eligible entity

The term eligible entity means—

(A)

a local educational agency; or

(B)

a consortium of two or more local educational agencies.

(3)

ESEA definitions

The terms elementary school, local educational agency, professional development, and secondary school have the meanings given the terms, respectively, in section 8101 of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 7801).

(4)

Existing competitive subgrant program

The term existing competitive subgrant program means a competitive subgrant program that is being carried out by a State as of the date the State applies for a grant under this Act and under which the State awards subgrants to eligible entities to purchase equipment to be used in a digital fabrication laboratory or provide professional development that relates to the incorporation of the digital fabrication laboratory into curriculum instruction.

(5)

Secretary

The term Secretary means the Secretary of Education.

(6)

State

The term State means each of the 50 States and the District of Columbia.