Stronger Connections Grant


The U.S. Department of Education announced North Dakota's allocation of $4,883,025 for the Stronger Connections Grant Program (SCG).  This competitive grant provides the opportunity for high-needs LEAs to improve conditions for student learning by encouraging schools to implement a comprehensive plan incorporating evidence-based activities, programs, and practices to create safer and healthier learning environments that promote positive school climates as outlined in the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) Section 4108. (20 U.S.C. 7118) ACTIVITIES TO SUPPORT SAFE AND HEALTHY STUDENTS. 

For questions or more information, contact or 701-328-2265. 


The Stronger Connections Grant must be used to develop, implement, and evaluate comprehensive programs within high-need local educational agencies (LEAs). The grants may be fully or partially funded. Several factors will determine the size of the awards; review of submitted applications, the potential scope of the project, projected cost for implementation, and available funds. 

Districts that submit applications that demonstrate a strong commitment to providing the greatest promise for positive impact and have demonstrated the required fiscal practices for grant management are factors that will also be taken into consideration when awarding the SCG funds. 

Grant Period 

The grant will be for the following consecutive school years (SY); SY 23/24, SY 24/25, and SY 25/26. This period includes the additional one-year period of funding availability provided under section 421(b) of the General Education Provisions Act (GEPA)(the Tydings Amendment).  Funds will be available July 1, 2023, and will need to be expended by June 30, 2026. As with any Federal Funds, they are intended to be expended during the grant period. We do not anticipate any further extension period for these funds. 


The Stronger Connections Grant funds will be awarded to high-need LEAs through a competitive grant process and must align and fund activities allowable under section 4108 of the ESEA. High-need LEAs have been identified using the following three indicators: (1) high percentages of students living in poverty (40 percent or higher), (2) high rates of chronic absenteeism, and (3) high rates of students who are disengaged.   See the District High-Needs Score chart,  identifying the high-need LEAs. 

Grant Components

Other Resources