How to Purchase School Safety Software With the BJA STOP School Violence Grant Program

BJA STOP School Violence Grant Program

The Student, Teachers, and Officers Preventing (STOP) School Violence Grant Program—provided through the Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA)—funds software that helps K-12 schools maintain a safe environment and recognize, respond to, and prevent violence on campus.

The overall goal is for schools to use the funding for:

BJA funds cannot be used to pay for security personnel, school resource officers (SRO), or target-hardening equipment such as cameras, locks, or fencing.

How to Apply

There are two steps to apply for the STOP School Violence Grant Program. Schools need to first complete a standard application on the Grants.gov website by August 2, 2021.  The remaining components of the application are completed on the JustGrants system by August 16, 2021. Applicants should submit at least 72 hours before the deadlines to make sure there is enough time to fix any issues if the application is rejected.

Solicitation and Application Categories

Applicants are required to choose and clearly state the category for their submission. Independent school districts, private K-12 schools, and public charter schools should apply to Category Two.

Category # of Awards Available Dollar Amount for Award Who Can Apply
Category One 10 Up to $2,000,000 State governments, including public and state-controlled universities
Category Two 140 Up to $1,000,000
  • Independent school districts, including public charter schools
  • Non-profits, including private K-12 schools, that have a 501(c)(3) status with the IRS
  • City or township governments
  • County governments
  • Native American tribal governments (federally recognized)
  • Private institutions of higher education

Applicants must also choose to respond to one or both key areas:

  1. Train school staff and students on how to prevent violence
  2. Implement software and/or threat assessment or intervention teams for danger awareness and response

Content of Application

This grant is highly competitive. It’s important that you write a detailed, persuasive application that clearly describes your project and how it will impact your school. Below we summarize the basic sections and requirements. You can read all the directions here.

Standard Form SF-424

As discussed above, this is step one of the two-step grant process. Submitted in Grants.gov, this form is used as a cover sheet for submitting your main application. You need to include who will be responsible for the main application to ensure the correct person is assigned as a user in JustGrants. You’ll also list the amount of funding needed for your project.

Standard Applicant Information

This section is pre-populated in JustGrants based on the information you submitted in your SF-424. You will need to provide the zip codes for your project area (i.e., the schools’ zip codes), who will be the Authorized Representative, and your schools’ names.

Proposal Abstract

This is a summary of how you plan to use the funding and why the project is important for your school community’s safety. You need to be specific and clearly describe what you plan to implement and how. Share your project’s goals, how you plan to measure success, and who will ultimately benefit from the project.

Proposal Narrative

This section of the application is the lengthiest and requires you to submit:

  1. Description – Briefly share why this project is necessary and how it going to improve your school’s safety.
  2. Project Design and Implementation – Being as specific as possible, describe how you will implement the project, how the project aligns with your current safety initiatives, and how your project relates to the overall goals of the grant program. List any activities, who will take ownership of each action, and how they will accomplish each task. Provide a timetable with milestones that will help you keep track of each activity.
  3. Capabilities and Competencies – Provide resumes of your project team who will help ensure your project is successful if you are awarded funds.
  4. Plan for Collecting the Data Required for this Solicitation’s Performance Measures – Discuss how you will measure the project’s success and who will be responsible for collecting and analyzing the data.
  5. Plan for Sustainability – Share how you will sustain the project after you have used all the awarded funds.

One of the most common reasons applications are rejected is because the applicant failed to follow the instructions. This section has multiple formatting requirements. The document must be double-spaced with 1-inch margins, and you must use 12-point Times New Roman font and not exceed 10 pages.

Budget Worksheet and Narrative

This section has many components, including a web-based budget form on JustGrants. The amount you list on the budget form must match the requested amount you listed on the SF-424. You must also provide an indirect cost rate agreement, answers to a brief questionnaire, and how you will determine applicable compensation.

Additional Components

There are many additional requirements that can be applicable to your school or district. For example, if you partner with a school safety expert or software provider for your project, you will need to include a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) that clearly details the roles of each partner.

Disclosures and Assurances

As part of your application, you must submit multiple forms, including but not limited to a Disclosure of Lobbying Activities and Disclosure of Duplication in Cost Items.

Application Review and Scoring Process

Your application will first be screened to ensure it meets the basic minimum requirements, including those listed above. Once that is confirmed, the peer review panel will evaluate your application for technical merit using the following scale:

  • Description of the Issue (20%) – How well does the proposal discuss the project and how it will impact the school?
  • Project Design and Implementation (30%) – How well did the applicant describe the project’s goals, objectives, timelines, and deliverables?
  • Capabilities and Competencies (20%) – Does the school have the right staff and resources to successfully accomplish the project?
  • Plan for Collecting the Data Required for this Solicitation’s Performance Measures (5%) – How well does the applicant understand how to report and analyze performance data?
  • Budget (15%) – Did the applicant provide a detailed, reasonable budget?
  • Sustainment (10%) – How well is the applicant’s plan to sustain the project after the funding is exhausted?

The reviewers will also consider strategic priorities, available funding, past performance, and how well your budget worksheet shows that the costs are necessary and allowable under the grant’s guidelines.

Purchasing Raptor with STOP Grant Funding

Raptor provides integrated visitor, volunteer, and emergency management software that can give you complete control over your school security and create the ultimate benefit: safety and peace of mind for everyone in your community. All Raptor software directly relates to the STOP Grant’s goals and allowable expenses. When you purchase Raptor, you also receive free age-appropriate Active Shooter Training from Safe Kids, Inc.

To learn more about Raptor and to schedule a personalized demo, contact us today.

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