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Solicitation (Request for Proposals)
Parents as Teachers

Solicitation (Request for Proposals)
Parents as Teachers

STATE OF ALASKA
Department of Health and Social Services
Public Health
State of Alaska - Department of Health and Social Services Seal
Request for Proposals
Parents as Teachers
For FY 2020
Grants and Contracts

NOTICE:  Proposals will ONLY be accepted through GEMS. Applicants are responsible for reviewing the GEMS homepage at https://gems.dhss.alaska.gov/ for details regarding agency registration and availability of technical assistance. Log into GEMS through myAlaska, https://my.alaska.gov/Welcome.aspx, to begin the application process. Once you are logged into GEMS, guidance and instruction are available in the Documents tab and from the film strip icon. Applicants are responsible for monitoring GEMS or the State Online Public Notices site for any changes or amendments that may be issued regarding this solicitation.

Relay Alaska provides assisted communication services at 711 or 1-800-770-8973 from a TTY phone, and at 1-800-770-8255 from a voice phone.


Proposal due date: December 13, 2019, 3:59 PM
Deadline for written inquiries: December 03, 2019, 3:59 PM
Project Period Begins: January 01, 2020
CONTACT PERSON: Amy O'Mara
PHONE: (907)465-4709
EMAIL: amy.omara@alaska.gov

Table of Contents

Online Posting Summary

The Department of Health and Social Services, Division of Public Health, seeks proposals from eligible applicants to provide services through the Parents as Teachers Program.

A pre-proposal teleconference will be held on Friday, November 22nd beginning at 8:00 AM Alaska Standard Time. Participants can join the teleconference at 1-866-484-0938 then entering access code 5104664410. Questions and answers from the teleconference will be published as an amendment to the solicitation.

Amendments

Amendment 1: Preproposal Teleconference Information, Response to Written Inquiry, Amendment11/29/2019

Explanation:

This amendment adds FY20-22 PAT Preproposal Teleconference Q and A as an attachment to the solicitation. The document is available under the Attachments section of the solicitation. This amendment also provides a written question received and the program response, and introduces a change in Section 1.03, Program Services/Activities.

Amendment Text:

Amendment to Section 1.03, Program Services/Activities, fourth bullet under components of the PAT model:

  • Screening – Developmental screenings to help parents understand their child’s development, recognize strengths,
    and identify areas of concern that might suggest the need for follow-up services. Health screenings should include
    overall health, vision, and hearing screenings performed by healthcare professionals. If a screening cannot be
    performed by a trained healthcare provider, vision, hearing, developmental, and overall health screenings can be
    performed by a trained Parent Educator/Home Visitor.


The following question was received in writing, and pertains to measures noted in Section 1.03
and also in Section 1.04.


Q:  Why are performance measures set at 75% of the national PAT requirements although
funding will not be received until January? Why not 50%?
A:  The DHSS PAT program requirement is 75% of the number of home visits required annually
by national PAT requirements and the State’s expectation will not be reduced. It is also a
requirement for PAT national affiliates. The goal emphasizes prioritizing efforts for the most
vulnerable, at risk families.
The National PAT program Measurement Criteria Essential Requirement 11 is for 60% of
families with “stressors” to receive at least 75% of the required number of visits in the program
year. DHSS PAT can’t change or reduce this affiliate requirement. The requirement emphasizes
prioritizing efforts for the most vulnerable, at risk families.

As an example, if the PAT National measurement criteria is 12 visits per year, it does not follow
that the goal becomes 6 visits every 6 months, or 3 visits per quarter. Family participation in
home visiting varies, dependent on the needs of the family, which is why engagement criteria is
aggregated across a longer span of time. For instance, families may have more frequent visits
when they first enroll or experience family stressors. They may have gaps, where they are still
enrolled, but have fewer visits, because of family needs, or the season of the year. Family needs
and engagement fluctuate throughout a one-year period. The annual goal gives programs
flexibility to respond to family needs while meeting affiliate requirements, and establishes
minimum levels for fidelity to the model. Successful proposers will not be penalized for not
completing a 12 month goal in 6 months, but will be expected to show how they have progressed
in 6 months toward the 12 month goal.

Section 1 - Grant Program Information

1.01Introduction and Program Description

The Department of Health and Social Services (DHSS or Department), Division of Public Health, is requesting proposals from eligible applicants to provide Parents as Teachers grant program services for the State of Alaska in FY2020 through FY2022. Program services are authorized under 7 AAC 78 Grant Programs. State of Alaska statutes and regulations are accessible at http://www.law.state.ak.us/doclibrary/doclib.html or through the contact person identified on the cover page of this Request for Proposals (RFP).

The purpose of Parents As Teachers (PAT) is to offer children and their parents and caregivers home-based services during the early years of child development. PAT offers parents and caregivers research-based information on how children grow and develop; types of activities and toys that will foster learning and nurture development; methods of positive discipline; new techniques for problem solving; realistic expectations of child behavior; and attitudes that will raise children's self-esteem.

The PAT philosophy is guided by the following principles:

  • Parents are their children’s first and most influential teachers.
  • The early years of a child’s life are critical for optimal development and provide the foundation for success in school and life.
  • Established and emerging research should be the foundation of parent education and family support curricula, training, materials, and services.
  • All young children and their families deserve the same opportunities to succeed, regardless of any demographic, geographic, or economic considerations.
  • An understanding and appreciation of the history and traditions of diverse cultures is essential in serving families.

Grantees are required to be a PAT Model Affiliate in Good Standing, or become an affiliate and submit the agency's affiliation certificate in the first grant year. To become an affiliate, agencies must meet the 20 essential components of the PAT model, which ensures each affiliate meets the minimum expectations for program design, infrastructure, and service delivery. For information on becoming a PAT Model Affiliate, please visit: https://parentsasteachers.org/getting-started-1/.

1.02Program Goals and Anticipated Outcomes

Program Goals:

  1. Support parent involvement in children’s education and development through high quality, personal visitation services and parent/child group sessions.
  2. Conduct continuous quality improvement cycles on priority indicators and share reports.
  3. Collect and use shared performance measures to demonstrate the value and impact of program services.

Anticipated Outcomes:

  1. Increased parent knowledge of early childhood development and improved parenting practices;
  2. Increased early screening and detection of developmental delays and health issues;
  3. Increased links between parents with children and local supports and resources;
  4. Increased levels of cooperation, coordination, and collaboration between PAT programs and other local entities providing services to and for families with young children; and
  5. Increased staff participation in individual PAT programs, and service/process improvements.  

The proposed project must demonstrate a thorough understanding and support of the grant program goals and outcomes anticipated by the Department. Projects must meet or exceed anticipated minimum outcomes described in this RFP.

1.03Program Services/Activities

Applicants agree to comply with the following program requirements and service standards.

The program uses an evidence-based model to deliver parent education services to eligible children, and to their parents and caregivers. Trained parent educators visit homes to support and build on parent and caregiver strengths, while teaching about optimal early childhood developmental learning. Further information regarding the Parents as Teachers National Office Essential Requirements is available at https://parentsasteachers.org/essential-requirements.

Successful project proposals will offer all components of the PAT model, which includes:

  • Personal visits – Individualized, strength-based visits where parent educators focus on child development and parent-child interaction. The training and curriculum, together with the parent educator’s interpersonal and communication skills, bring a valuable service to families and result in measurable impacts. The personal visits goal for families with one or fewer stressors is that 60% receive at least 9 personal visits per year. This is 75% of the PAT National Requirement of 12 annual personal visits. The personal visits goal for families with two or more stressors is that 60% receive at least 18 personal visits per year, or 75% of the PAT National Requirement of 24 personal visits per year.
  • Resource network – A network of community resources that parents can access as needed. It is essential that projects build comprehensive, collaborative, and community-based partnerships that build on family strengths, support long-term self-sufficiency, and impact real and long-lasting change. Because families often are not aware of services available in their community, the parent educator helps bridge the gap between available resources and families’ needs.
  • Group connections – An opportunity for parents to share experiences, discuss problems, learn from other parents, support each other, observe their child with other children, and practice parenting skills. In addition, child development information is shared and social connection between parents is fostered.
  • Screening – Developmental screenings to help parents understand their child’s development, recognize strengths, and identify areas of concern that might suggest the need for follow-up services. Health screenings should include overall health, vision, and hearing screenings performed by healthcare professionals.

In response to the RFP, applicant proposals must address or provide the following:

  • A copy of the most recent PAT affiliation certificate, or a complete plan to become an affiliate by the end of the first grant year.
  • The proposed parent, family, and community gathering activities that link groups of families to local supports and resources, and the ways in which Strengthening Families(TM) will be incorporated into the project. Strengthening Families is a research-informed, strength-based approach to helping families reduce stress, address risk factors, and promote healthy development by embedding protective factors in programs and communities. For more information, visit http://dhss.alaska.gov/ocs/Pages/families/default.aspx.
  • The ways in which the project proposes to link individual families to needed support services. Support services include, but are not limited to, special education; Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) programs; housing authorities; health, dental and mental health programs; other needed social services provided Tribally, by the State, or by the local community.
  • A timeline for the initiation of services and project activities and accomplishment of program goals.

Project proposals must describe the ways in which the project aligns with program intent. The submitted proposal will identify agency resources available to the project; describe project activities; and clearly state the project’s anticipated goals, outputs, and outcomes.

1.04Program Evaluation Requirements and Reporting

Results Based Budgeting Framework

Results based budgeting provides a framework in which allocated resources support, and are justified by, a set of outputs and expected results. Within this framework, actual performance and achieved outcomes are measured by objective performance measures.

Projects are required to align with program objectives expressing Department priorities and core services. Projects will use performance measures to evaluate progress toward meaningful outcomes, and to initiate data collection and reporting consistent with Department priorities.

The Department Priorities, Core Services, and Performance Measures of Effectiveness and Efficiency for this program are:

Department Priorities:

  • 3 Safe & Responsible Individuals, Families & Communities

Department Core Services:

  • 3.2 Protect Vulnerable Alaskans

Performance Measures:

Effectiveness

  • Number of children served
  • Number of families served
  • Number of hosted community events

Efficiency

  • 60% of families with one or fewer stressors receive at least 9 personal visits. This is 75% fo the personal visits required annually by PAT National.
  • 60% of families with two or more stressors receive at least 18 personal visits. This is 75% of the personal visits required annually by PAT National.

Proposals submitted in response to this RFP must include a proposed evaluation plan that incorporates the performance measures of effectiveness and efficiency identified above. Applicants can propose additional performance measures for evaluating the project’s progress in achieving results supportive of program goals and outcomes. The applicant's evaluation plan must include indicators and data gathering strategies that will be used, and will specify a Continuous Quality Improvement project to be implemented during the grant year.

Grant Reporting

Required quarterly reporting will include:

  1. Cumulative Fiscal Reports recording overall grant expenditures by budget line; and
  2. Program Reports with quantitative and qualitative data in the format prescribed by the program. Reports will include, but not be limited to, achievements and challenges in meeting grant priorities and requirements, staffing, caseload, trainings, client demographics, and performance measures.

Additionally, a year-end program report, due no later than July 30, will gather project data on

  • Child and family demographics (race, language, and caregiver ages)
  • Program performance measures for health screenings and data related to Outcome Essential Requirements tools being used for annual reports to PAT National. This data may include, though is not limited to, observations of caregiver-child interaction, early literacy activities, immunizations, postpartum health care visits, depression, breastfeeding, smoke-free environments, child maltreatment, and well-child visits.

Draft examples of quarterly and annual report forms are provided as Attachments 1 and 2 respectively. Please note that both are in draft status, and the final versions may vary somewhat.

1.05Target Population and Service Area

Target Population: The target population for the solicited services is any family with children aged 0 – 5 years old.

Service Areas and Communities: Services are solicited statewide.

In response to this RFP, applicants must clearly describe the population targeted by the project, including the area or communities to be served. The target population narrative must identify sub-populations most in need of services, must cite community factors that place the targeted population at risk, and identify other factors considered in the selection of the targeted population. Proposals will be evaluated for compatibility with the program’s intended target population identified in this solicitation.

Each proposer must include a needs assessment supporting the need for PAT services in the proposed service area.

1.06Program Funding

Funds available for this program are anticipated to total $434,000 per year in General Funds.

No more than four (4) proposals will be awarded. There is no minimum amount for the award and the maximum grant award will not exceed $185,000. The allocation of grant funds will be based upon a number of variables, including the location of services, the level of community collaboration, and the number of families to be served.

The guideline for proposed budgets:

  • Projects proposing to serve 10 children or fewer will be funded in the range of $3,000 – $5,000 per family served
  • Projects proposing to serve 11 to 20 families:  $35,000 – $100,000
  • Projects proposing to serve 21 to 40 families:  $70,000 - $185,000

Proposed Budget: The applicant must submit a budget proposal for the first period of award, January 01 through June 30, 2020. The proposed budget detail and narrative will support the program’s results based service delivery and staffing requirements stated in this RFP.

The proposed budget will be fully compliant with the limitations described in this RFP, and those detailed in 7 AAC 78.160 (Costs). Regulations are provided under the GEMS Documents tab.

Resources specific to budgeting are also available under the GEMS Documents tab. DHSS Grant Budget Preparation Guidelines provide information and guidance about budget lines, cost detail groupings, and narrative requirements. Additionally, Grantee User Manual Part I provides detailed instructions for entering a budget proposal in the chapter "Responding to a Solicitation."

Other Agency Funding: Prior to submitting a proposal, applicants are required to list all other agency funding received and applied for. This task must be completed by an Agency Power User in the Other Funding section of the Agency Administration tab. This is part of the pre-award risk assessment required under Uniform Guidance 2 CFR 200.

Applicants will also address the project’s financial sustainability efforts, describing the other agency resources available for the project's continued operations in the event State funding is reduced and/or delayed.

Indirect Costs: If the proposed budget includes indirect costs, 7 AAC 78.160(p) requires a copy of the agency’s current federally approved Indirect Cost Rate Agreement. The agreement is to be uploaded in the Agency Administration tab. Lapsed agreements can be used if uploaded with the negotiating federal agency’s written approval to continue using the rate until a new agreement is negotiated.

Payment for Services/Grant Income: No fees will be charged for services under this program.

Section 2 - Applicant Qualifications

2.01Agency Experience

Proposal evaluation will include consideration of the applicant’s history of compliance with service and grant requirements, and previous experience in providing the same or similar services. Evaluation may include DHSS site reviews, program audits, and confirmation of the successful resolution of any findings. This is part of the pre-award risk assessment required under Uniform Guidance 2 CFR 200.

In response to this RFP, the applicant proposal must describe previous experience providing services the same or similar to those proposed. The description must clearly identify the time period over which services were provided and the target population served.

2.02Project Staffing

Project staffing must be sufficient to implement the proposed activities in order to meet program goals and the anticipated outcomes and meet PAT National Office Essential requirements. The minimum qualifications for parent educators are two years’ previous supervised work experience with young children and/or parents, AND a high school diploma, GED, or equivalent degree earned in countries outside the United States. Further information regarding the Parents as Teachers National Office Essential Requirements, including staff requirements, is available at https://parentsasteachers.org/essential-requirements.

Resumes, position descriptions, and professional credentials for key project personnel must also be uploaded as part of the response. This is part of the pre-award risk assessment required under Uniform Guidance 2 CFR 200.

Awarded grantees will be required to provide written notification to the DPH PAT Program Manager no fewer than 14 business days in advance of any Parent Educator’s planned leave extending beyond 10 business days. Parent Educator resignations and/or terminations must also be reported in writing to the PAT Program Manager within five (5) business days. This notification must include the agency’s proposed plan to fill the vacant position with an employee having appropriate credentials and experience for the position, along with a budget revision request for reallocation of Personal Services funds.

In response to the RFP, applicant proposals must:

  • Provide information about staff-to-family ratios, and the frequency of visitations and group/community activities
  • Describe the professional development staff will receive: What will be offered, how often, and to whom? In addition to regularly scheduled staff meetings for program development, suggested professional development topics include: orientation; issues of cultural and individual differences; working with, supporting, and strengthening families; developing family, community, and systems collaborations; fostering positive behavior; impact of Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) and trauma; activities aiding cognitive development; reflective supervision; and linking to standards and Early Learning Guidelines. The Guidelines are available at https://www.bestbeginningsalaska.org/what-we-do/building-strong-families/alaska-early-learning-guidelines/.

2.03Administrative, Management, and Facility Requirements

The applicant must demonstrate the agency's sustainable fiscal and administrative capacity. Executive, administrative, and financial staff must be qualified, as indicated by the resumes of position holders uploaded as an element of the proposal. This is part of the pre-award risk assessment requires under Uniform Guidance 2 CFR 200.

  1. The applicant must ensure procedures are in place to protect client confidentiality compliant with State and federal standards.
  2. The applicant must ensure its most recent financial audit was submitted to the appropriate state office (see Audit Requirements below), and any findings identified have been resolved.

Awarded proposers will be required to submit additional agency information if the agency GEMS record is not current.

Audit Requirements:

Federal Requirements: Agencies spending $750,000 or more total Federal Financial Assistance in the agency fiscal year may be required to comply with conditions of the Single Audit Act of 1984, P.L. 98-502, as amended by the Single Audit Act Amendments of 1996, P.L. 104-156, and as defined in 2 CFR 200.

State Requirements: Agencies spending $750,000 or more total State Financial Assistance in the agency fiscal year are required to comply with the conditions of 2 AAC 45.010-090.  The current regulations may be viewed at the State of Alaska, Department of Law website, http://www.law.state.ak.us/doclibrary/doclib.html, or copies may be obtained from the contact identified on the cover page of the RFP.

Information on State and Federal Single Audit Acts compliance may be obtained from:

State Single Audit Coordinator
Department of Administration
Division of Finance
PO Box 110204
Juneau, AK 99811-0204
Telephone: (907) 465-4666
Fax: (907) 465-2169

DHSS Program Audit Requirements: All DHSS grantees are subject to the requirements of 7 AAC 78.230. If awarded, agencies which are not required to file State Single Audits under 2 AAC 45.010 must ensure a fiscal audit of the agency operations under the grant program is performed by an independent, licensed, certified public accountant at least once every two years and submitted to:

State of Alaska Department of Health and Social Services
Finance and Management Services
Audit Section
PO Box 110602
Juneau, AK  99811-0602
Telephone:  (907) 465-3120

Facility, Service Access, and Safety:

  1. The applicant must address potential safety concerns for clients and staff in the management of services proposed in response to this RFP.
  2. The applicant should describe client accessibility to services and the way in which that will enhance project success.
  3. All applicants for DHSS grants should have a written plan for emergency response and recovery that provides for potential safety concerns and the safe evacuation of clients and staff. This plan is mandatory for agencies providing residential and/or critical care services as noted in the State Grant Assurances.

2.04Support/Coordination of Services

Applicants must demonstrate the proposed project has the necessary support and coordination for the successful delivery of services. The proposal must include the following:

  1. Community support where services are proposed;
  2. Partnerships and collaborations specific to the proposed project and formalized under Memoranda of Agreement (MOA) and/or Understanding (MOU) for each community partner noted in the proposal; and
  3. Coordination with necessary referring agencies and the role of each described.

Applicant proposals must include a plan to disseminate information to the community in a manner that is understandable and accessible.

Additionally, applicant responses must provide information about their Community Advisory Board (CAB), including meeting plans and board participants, and plans to include a parent/consumer on the community advisory board. The purpose of a CAB is to ensure community input and involvement, assist with coordination of services and linkages to referrals, and serving families in need.

Section 3 - General Instructions for Proposal Submission

3.01Eligibility

Applicants must be eligible to apply under 7 AAC 78.030 (Eligible Applicants). Eligible applicants are state agencies; political subdivisions of the state such as cities, organized boroughs, and Regional Educational Attendance Areas; nonprofit organizations and consortia of nonprofits; and Alaska Native entities. As follows, eligibility will be verified by Grants and Contracts.

  1. Political subdivisions of the state and Regional Educational Attendance Areas will be verified by State records.
  2. Eligible nonprofits are listed in the State’s database of registered nonprofit entities or the US Internal Revenue Service’s register of tax exempt organizations. Nonprofit subsidiaries of nonprofit corporations must also provide a letter from the parent organization confirming nonprofit status.
  3. Alaska Native entities as defined in 7 AAC 78.950(1) must submit, with the application, a legally binding resolution waiving the entity’s sovereign immunity to suit through the duration of the program, identified in RFP Subsection 3.05. The resolution must be authorized in compliance with the tribe’s constitution, either by the tribal council or by majority vote of the tribal membership. The required template is provided at Subsection 4.02, Other Technical Requirements.

Federal Funding Accountability and Transparency Act (FFATA):  In accordance with 2 CFR Chapter 1, Part 170 Reporting Sub- Award And Executive Compensation Information, reporting is required of any grant award with federal funding equal to or greater than $25,000. FFATA is intended to hold the federal government accountable for spending decisions. Accountability data is available to the public at www.USASpending.gov. Reporting requirements extend to recipients of State-issued awards with federal funds. An Agency Power User must complete the FFATA form under Federal Reporting in the GEMS Agency Administration tab. The report data will reflect the audited figures of the agency’s most recently completed fiscal year. The report captures expenses and executive compensation for your agency. More information regarding FFATA requirements can be found at www.fsrs.gov.

All grantees receiving awards with federal funds are required to obtain a Data Universal Numbering System (DUNS) number. A DUNS number can be secured with no fee at https://fedgov.dnb.com/webform. An Agency Power User must add the agency DUNS number in the General section of the Agency Administration tab.

Applicant agency GEMS records must contain the agency’s current State of Alaska Business License number, and a current governing board roster that includes titles, contact information, and terms of office for each seat. The roster must include emergency contact information outside the applicant agency for one or more officers.

Grants and Contracts will verify neither the applicant agency nor its principals are presently debarred, suspended, proposed for debarment, declared ineligible, or voluntarily excluded from receiving grant assistance from any State or federal department or agency. If an agency or its principals are excluded from receiving grant assistance, the proposal may not be considered.

Applicants who have had a contract or grant to help produce this RFP are not eligible to apply and any submitted proposal will not be considered.

3.02Acceptance of Terms

By submitting a proposal, an applicant accepts all terms and conditions of this RFP including all identified attachments and guidelines, 7 AAC 78, and any other applicable statutes and regulations. Copies of these may be accessed through the contact person identified on the cover page or through the web addresses identified in this RFP.

If a grant is awarded, this RFP and the applicant’s proposal become part of the grant agreement. The applicant will be bound by the provisions contained in the awarded proposal unless the Department agrees that specific parts of the proposal are not part of the agreement.

Proposals and other materials submitted in response to this RFP become the property of the State and may be returned only if the State allows. Proposals are public documents and may be inspected or copied by anyone after grants have been awarded.

3.03Inquiries

Applicants should immediately review this RFP for defects and questionable or confusing content. Questions that can be answered by directing the applicant to a specific section in the RFP may be answered verbally by the contact person identified on the RFP cover page. Questions that cannot be answered by directing an applicant to a specific section of the RFP may be declared substantive. The applicant will be directed to submit the question in writing to the contact person at the email address on the cover page no later than the Deadline for Written Inquiries, also identified on the cover page. This will allow issuance of any necessary amendments and/or clarifications to all prospective applicants.

Applicants are responsible for monitoring the State’s Online Public Notices website (http://aws.state.ak.us/OnlinePublicNotices/) or GEMS for any clarifications or amendments that may be issued regarding this solicitation.

Proposals will not be accepted after 3:59 PM prevailing local time on the due date identified on the cover page.

3.04Proposal Costs and Content

The Department will not be responsible for any expenses incurred by the applicant prior to the authorized grant performance period. All costs of responding to this RFP are the responsibility of the applicant.

The applicant is responsible for the content of the proposal.

3.05Duration

This RFP is for a two and one-half year period, beginning 1/1/2020 through 6/30/2022. The initial period of the award is January 1, 2020 through June 30, 2020. At the discretion of the Department, a project funded under this RFP may be considered for continued funding in subsequent program year(s). The annual decision to continue funding for the subsequent years of the two and one-half year grant cycle is based on the following general conditions:

  1. the Department’s judgment that there is a continued need for the grant project service;
  2. the grantee’s satisfactory performance during the previous grant year;
  3. the availability of sufficient grant program funds, and whether continuation of the financing is consistent with public health and welfare; and
  4. the ability of the grantee and the Department to agree on any adjustments in payments or service.

Applicants will submit a budget proposal for the first period of the grant only. Funding in each subsequent year will require submission and approval of documents needed to update service plans, evaluation measures, and budgets. Grants and Contracts will notify grantees of specific submission requirements necessary to qualify for consideration of continued funding.

3.06Proposal Review

Following the deadline for receipt of proposals, no revisions will be accepted unless provided in response to a request from the contact person named in this RFP. Proposals will be reviewed as follows:

  1. Proposals will be evaluated in a manner that will avoid disclosure of contents before notices of grant award have been issued.
  2. DHSS staff will evaluate each proposal for minimum responsiveness and other technical requirements, and eliminate nonresponsive proposals from consideration.
  3. Using the criteria set out in this RFP and 7 AAC 78.100 (Criteria for Review of Proposals), DHSS staff will evaluate each responsive proposal. Scores for each criterion will be based solely on the response to the associated question. Points will not be earned if the information was provided in response to another question in Section 4. DHSS staff will also review relevant departmental documentation regarding the applicant. Staff recommendations regarding awards and levels of funding will include consideration of the following:
    1. a history of the applicant’s compliance with grant requirements, to include records of program performance, on-site program reviews, and prior year audits;
    2. priorities in applicable State health and social services plans;
    3. requirements of applicable State and federal statutes; and
    4. municipal ordinances or regulations applicable to the grant program.

If there are multiple responsive proposals for which there is insufficient money to fully fund, or supplementary expertise is deemed necessary to the review of proposed services, the Department may appoint a Proposal Evaluation Committee (PEC) as an additional advisory body. PEC members will initially evaluate proposals, independently of other committee members. As a committee, the PEC will meet in a closed session (7 AAC 78.090 Review of Proposals) to further review proposals and develop recommendations. Scores will be assigned based on the applicant's response to each individual question and the associated criteria. Applicants will not earn points for a given question based on a response to another question in the RFP. The PEC review will include discussion of each proposal’s merits. PEC recommendations will rank proposals in priority order and include approval or disapproval for award, modifications to the proposed project, and special compliance conditions.

All staff advisory recommendations and, if applicable, those of the PEC, and all review materials will be submitted for consideration by the Division Director, who will make recommendations to the Commissioner of the Department of Health and Social Services or the Commissioner’s designee.

3.07Final Decision Authority

Recommendations are advisory only, including those from any PEC that may be held. The final decision to approve or disapprove award, the amount of each award, and whether to impose special conditions or modifications rests with the Commissioner or Commissioner’s designee.

NOTE: The final decision may include additional considerations, such as a lack or duplication of services in certain locations, or alternative services that may be available; a critical need for services by vulnerable populations; and matters of health, life and safety. The Department has the responsibility to ensure public monies are utilized in a manner that protects the interests of the people of the State, and retains the right to make final awards that ensure responsible distribution of grant funds.

3.08Notification of Grant Award and Appeals

Within fifteen (15) days after the decision regarding grant awards, applicants will be notified of the final funding decisions, and, if awarded, any conditions of award or modifications. Following any necessary negotiations for revisions to the proposed budget and scope of services, successful applicants will be issued a grant agreement. This formal agreement will contain specific performance and reporting requirements consistent with Department policy and procedure and 7 AAC 78.

Per 7 AAC 78.305 (Request for Appeal), an applicant may appeal a final grant award decision. Requests for hearing must be addressed to the Commissioner, and received in writing at the address below within 15 days after the applicant receives notification of the decision. The request must contain the reasons for the appeal and must cite the law, regulation, or terms of the grant upon which the appeal is based.

With a copy to the contact identified on the solicitation cover page, send appeal to:

Adam Crum, Commissioner
Department of Health & Social Services
3601 C Street, Ste 902
Anchorage, Alaska 99503

3.09Cancellation of the RFP/Termination of Award

Contingent upon funding appropriations and the Governor’s approval, the Department may fund proposals from eligible applicants. DHSS may withdraw this RFP at any time and reserves the right to refrain from making an award when such action is deemed to be in the best interest of the State. Funds awarded for a grant as a result of this RFP may be withheld and the grant terminated by written notice from the State to the grantee at any time for violation by the grantee of any terms or conditions of the grant award, or when such action is deemed to be in the best interest of the State.

Section 4 - Submission Requirements/Evaluation Criteria

If applicable, please provide a response in the text box (or the requested document) of each question below. Scores will be assigned based on the applicant's response to each individual question and the associated criteria. Applicants will not earn points for a given question based on a response to another question in the RFP.

4.01Minimum Responsiveness Criterion per 78.100(2)(A)

Proposals that fail to meet the minimum responsiveness requirement below will be eliminated from consideration per 7 AAC 78.090(b)(2).

1. Applicant is eligible per 7 AAC 78.030.
Evaluation Criteria Points
a. Applicant is eligible per 7 AAC 78.030.

4.02Other Technical Requirements per 7 AAC 78.060, 78.090(b) and 78.100

Response & Organizational Documentation

1. If applying as a non-profit organization, confirm non-profit status is documented.
Evaluation Criteria Points
a.

The agency is confirmed as a non-profit in good standing on the State's corporation database, https://www.commerce.alaska.gov/cbp/main/search/entities, and/or

b. The agency’s current 501(c)(3) status is confirmed on the Exempt Organizations page, accessible at https://apps.irs.gov/app/eos/.
c. If a non-profit subsidiary of a non-profit corporation, a verifying letter from the parent non-profit agency is uploaded to the applicant's agency GEMS record (under General in the Agency Administration tab). The parent corporation must meet criteria a and/or b.
2. If applying as a Federally recognized tribal entity, upload a signed Resolution for Tribal Entities using the template provided below. Confirm the following criteria are met.
The following document needs to be completed and submitted: FY20-22 PAT Resolution.pdf
Evaluation Criteria Points
a.

The applicant is a recognized Alaska Native entity as verified by the Federal Register at https://www.federalregister.gov/documents/2019/02/01/2019-00897/indian-entities-recognized-by-and-eligible-to-receive-services-from-the-united-states-bureau-of. If a tribal consortium, all members are recognized Alaska Native entities.

b. A Resolution, completed on the provided form, is uploaded in the space provided. If a tribal consortium, a Resolution from each member tribe is uploaded as a single file.
3. If applying as a government entity, confirm the following criterion is met.
Evaluation Criteria Points
a. The applicant is another State Agency, such as the University; a political subdivision such as a city or municipality, verified at https://www.commerce.alaska.gov/web/dcra/LocalBoundaryCommission/MunicipalCertificates.aspx; or an REAA under AS 14.08.031 verified at http://education.alaska.gov/facilities/pdf/doe2013map.pdf.
4. Confirm neither the applicant agency nor its principals are presently debarred, suspended, proposed for debarment, declared ineligible, or voluntarily excluded from receiving grant assistance from any State or federal department or agency. If an agency or its principals are excluded from receiving grant assistance, the proposal may not be considered.
Evaluation Criteria Points
a.

Neither the applicant agency nor its principals are barred from receiving federal assistance as verified in the federal System for Awards Management at https://www.sam.gov/SAM/.

5. Electronically sign the State Grant Assurances form.
Evaluation Criteria Points
a. State Grant Assurances form is signed by an individual authorized to enter into legal agreements on behalf of the applicant agency.
6. Confirm the following information is provided at the Agency Administration tab. These records must be maintained by a Power User. If the information is found to be incomplete or not current, there may be delay in execution of any offered award.
Evaluation Criteria Points
a. The General section contains a current governing board roster. The roster includes terms of each seat and contact information outside the applicant agency for one or more officers.
b.

The Other Funding section contains a record for each source of agency operating funds. The record includes funds applied for under this solicitation. This is part of the pre-award risk assessment required under Uniform Guidance 2 CFR 200.

c.

The General section contains a State of Alaska business license number, verified at https://www.commerce.alaska.gov/cbp/main/.

d. All agency contact records are up to date, including Head of Agency, Primary Contact, and Head of Financial Operations.
e. The applicant’s agency record contains the Agency Fiscal Year Start Date.
f.

The applicant's agency record contains a current Federally Negotiated Indirect Cost Rate Agreement. If lapsed, the agreement is uploaded with written confirmation from the negotiating agency that the rate is valid until a new agreement is approved.

4.03History of Compliance with Grant Requirements per 7 AAC 78.100(2)(B)

1. Previous recipients of DHSS awards will confirm the following criteria pertaining to past performance and compliance are met. This is part of the pre-award risk assessment required under Uniform Guidance 2 CFR 200. All other applicants will mark Complete without confirming.
Evaluation Criteria Points
a. Fiscal, narrative, and data reporting in prior years has been complete and timely.
b. Required State and Federal Single Audits have been submitted, verified at http://doa.alaska.gov/dof/ssa/ssainfo.html. Any prior year audit exceptions have been resolved, verified by the Finance and Management Services Audit Section contact identified at http://dhss.alaska.gov/fms/Pages/Audit.aspx.
c. Activities in prior year(s) demonstrate effective delivery of services. DHSS review may include documentation such as performance reports, audit reports, grant records, site visits, etc.
d. Agency historically maintains required standards. Verification may include, though is not limited to, quality assurance reviews, licensing, and certifications.

4.04Questions and Criteria Related to Program Policy, Goals, Outcomes, and Activities

1. Describe the proposed project in the text box below, identifying the ways in which it will achieve the program goals and anticipated outcomes stated in this RFP. The response must describe the ways in which the proposed project will:
  • Ensure fidelity to the PAT model;
  • Recruit children and their families;
  • Manage enrollment and wait-lists;
  • Ensure provision of vision, hearing, developmental, and social/emotional screenings;
  • Link individual families to needed support services such as special education, WIC, housing authorities, health, dental and mental health programs, other social services provided by the local community, Tribally, or by the State; and
  • Plan for and conduct parent, family, and community gathering activities that link groups of families to local supports and resources, and how Strengthening Families protective factors will be incorporated into the program.
Evaluation Criteria Points
a. The description demonstrates a thorough understanding of program goals and outcomes, and clearly identifies the ways in which they will be achieved. 100
b.

Recruitment, eligibility determinations, and the management of enrollment and the management of wait-lists are well described.

100
c.

Proposed plan for linking families to services is clear, and identifies adequate levels of services and providers.

100
d.

Gathering activities are well described, and planned for success based on ease of access by families and community members.

100
e.

Identifies the ways in which Strengthening Families protective factors will be incorporated into the project.

100
2. In the text box below, describe the ways in which the project aligns with program intent. The response will identify project resources and activities, and clearly state the project’s anticipated goals, outputs, and outcomes.
Evaluation Criteria Points
a.

The described activities are well developed, reasonable, and supportive of program intent.

100
b. The proposal’s identified goals, outputs, and outcomes align with those of the PAT National Model. 100
3. In the text box below, describe the project evaluation plan, including indicators and data gathering strategies that will be implemented to address the program's performance measures identified in Subsection 1.04.  The response must:
  1. Describe the ways in which the evaluation information and data will be used to implement and improve programming, provide feedback to stakeholders and staff, and inform program direction.
  2. List the types of data, frequency of collection, and the program objectives they address. Required screenings and screening data will be included.
  3. Describe the assessment of the quality of engagement efforts, parent resource materials, and inclusion of Strengthening Families.
  4. Describe the ways the proposed project will assess the effectiveness of intervention efforts, including information on any tools that will be used.
Evaluation Criteria Points
a. The proposed evaluation plan includes indicators and data gathering strategies aligned with the program performance measures identified in Subsection 1.04. 100
b.

The proposed evaluation plan includes assessment of efforts and of parent resource materials. It also provides for ongoing assessment of the effectiveness of interventions.

100
c.

Evaluation tools are appropriate to data gathering needs of the program. If in the selection process, the process itself is cohesive and thorough.

100
d.

The proposed evaluation plan includes Information about the two Outcomes Essential Requirement tools to be used.

100
4. Upload a timeline for program implementation for the first grant year including professional development and parent, family, and community engagement activities.
Evaluation Criteria Points
a. A timeline for program implementation for the first year of the grant is uploaded. 100
b. The timeline is complete, including professional development and parent, family, and community engagement activities. 50
c. Program implementation timeline adequately supports the program goals and anticipated outcomes stated in the RFP. 50
5. In the text box below, describe the target population and service area(s) of the proposed project. Identify sub-populations most in need of services, community factors that place the targeted population at risk, and identify other areas of consideration in selection of the targeted population. In the upload field, provide the needs assessment demonstrating the ways in which the target population will benefit from grant program services.
Evaluation Criteria Points
a. The description clearly identifies the proposed target population and service area, and meets the intent of the services solicited. 100
b.

The needs assessment is included and clearly supports delivery of services to the target population identified by the proposer.

100
6. In the upload field, provide the project's sustainability plan to ensure continued services should there be reductions or delays in State funding. Using the Budget form, provide the proposed budget for the first period of award, January 01 - June 30, 2020. Include detail and supporting narrative as shown in the DHSS Grant Budget Preparation Guidelines (Documents tab). Confirm the following criteria are met.
Evaluation Criteria Points
a. The budget narrative is complete and mutually consistent with the budget detail.
b. Cost line items are allowable under 7 AAC 78.160, and are compliant with stated program requirements.
c. Travel costs are consistent with 7 AAC 78.160(h) and (i), and with any program requirements or limitations identified in the solicitation.
d. Equipment costs and subcontract costs are allowed by the program and consistent with 7 AAC 78.280.
e. Indirect costs are fully compliant with rates and exemptions of the agency's current Federally Negotiated Indirect Cost Rate Agreement, uploaded in the General section of the Agency Administration tab.
f. The budget supports the proposed project and program intent, and the project appears achievable with demonstrated resources. 50
g. Costs are reasonable and substantiated in the narrative. 50
h. The proposed budget narrative clearly describes any necessary allocation of resources among target populations or service areas. 50
i.

A sustainability plan has been included with the application.

100

4.05Applicant Qualifications - Criteria Relating to Personnel, Management, and Facilities

1. In the text box below, describe the agency's previous experience in providing services the same as, or similar to, those proposed. Clearly identify the time period over which services were provided and the population served. This is part of the pre-award risk assessment required under Uniform Guidance 2 CFR 200. Describe any experience delivering PAT services under an affiliate status, or any experience delivering services under another evidence-based home visitation model. In the upload space, provide either
  1. A copy of the most recent PAT affiliation certificate if your agency is a PAT Model affiliate in good standing, and copy of Blue Ribbon Affiliate status if applicable; or
  2. The applicant agency's proposed plan to become an affiliate in good standing by the end of the grant year.
Evaluation Criteria Points
a. The applicant's previous experience providing the same or similar services demonstrates the resources and capacity needed to provide the solicited program services. Note: DHSS staff review will also include DHSS documentation such as prior year performance reports, audit reports, site visits, etc. as noted in Subsection 4.03. 100
b.

The uploaded document either confirms the applicant as a PAT Model affiliate in good standing or proposes an achievable plan to become an affiliate in good standing by the end of the award period.

100
2. In the text box below, describe the proposed project's program and administrative staffing needs. Response must:
  • Describe the staffing for proposed programs, staff-to-family ratios, visitations, and activities.
  • Describe how existing administrative capacity will be utilized to support program services.
  • Describe the types and frequency of professional development that will be offered to new and existing Parent educators.
  • Describe how reflective supervision and staff meetings will be offered to Parent Educators and the frequency of both.
Scan the following documents as a single file and upload in the space provided:
  1. Position descriptions for key project positions;
  2. Resumes and professional credentials for position holders; and
  3. Resumes of administrative staff providing supervision, fiscal, reporting, and management needs.
This information is part of the pre-award risk assessment required under Uniform Guidance 2 CFR 200.
Evaluation Criteria Points
a.

Staff providing services are qualified and competent as demonstrated by the uploaded position descriptions, resumes, and professional credentials.

100
b.

Staffing levels are sufficient to support the visitation requirements of the proposed project and compliant with all identified program mandates. Staff-to-family ratios are sufficient to provide quality service delivery.

100
c. Position descriptions support the intent of the RFP and the project proposed. 50
d.

The plan for reflective supervision and staff meetings is included.

50
e.

Professional development opportunities are available and outlined.

50
f.

Administrative staff is qualified as demonstrated by the resumes provided.

50
g.

Administrative capacity demonstrates capability to meet management and reporting needs.

50
3. In the text box below, describe the management structure and oversight of the agency and program. Response must:
  1. Describe your organizational structure and how it will result in effective management of your PAT program. Include information indicating the percentage of time the agency’s administrator will spend overseeing the requirements of this grant, the percentage of time site administration will spend collecting data and overseeing each PAT site, and the percentage of time any other administrative staff (such as secretarial support) will spend with grant duties.
  2. Describe how you will provide oversight at the local site level and monitor program implementation.
  3. Include information on program documents and materials, production of parent materials, handbooks, policy information, etc.
Evaluation Criteria Points
a.

Applicant’s described structure aligns well with the proposed oversight and monitoring plan. The materials are well explained and offer an integrated picture of materials, policy, and handbooks.

100
4. In the text box below, describe the procedures that will be used to protect client confidentiality.
Evaluation Criteria Points
a. The applicant's description identifies the procedures necessary to protect client confidentiality compliant with State and Federal standards. 100
5. In the text box below, describe the administrative facilities and locations.
Evaluation Criteria Points
a.

The facilities described are safe and appropriate to the administration of the program.

100

4.06Demonstration of Support/Coordination of Service

1. In the text box below, describe community support in the community or communities to be served. The description will necessarily provide information about the project’s Community Advisory Board (CAB), including schedule of meetings, board participants, and the inclusion of parents/consumers on the board.
Evaluation Criteria Points
a.

As described, the project has adequate community support, and that support is also reflected in the described composition and activities of the CAB.

100
b.

The CAB is sufficiently organized to effectively assist with coordination of services, linkage to referrals, and serving families and communities in need.

100
2. In the text box below, describe partnerships or collaborations necessary to the proposed project.
  • Describe partnerships and collaborations formed to provide the services of the program that support but do not supplant existing services.
  • Describe other early childhood programs currently serving target population and existing gaps. 
  • Describe how existing Early Childhood and Family services programs were consulted in a timely and meaningful manner during the design and development of this program.
In the upload field, provide a single-file scan documenting existing partnerships and collaborations specific to the proposed project. Current Memoranda of Agreement (MOAs) or Understanding (MOUs) for each community partner cited in the applicant's proposal must be submitted.  
Evaluation Criteria Points
a.

Partnerships and collaborations necessary for the effective delivery of services are well described. Evidence specific to the proposed project is provided.

100
b.

Uploaded MOAs/MOUs are current and are specific to the project services proposed.

100
3. In the text box below, describe the in-place or planned coordination with the State or other providers for referrals necessary to project success. Identify the project staff involved as well as the responsible positions at the referring agencies.
Evaluation Criteria Points
a.

The applicant's description demonstrates a clear understanding of the roles that must be performed by the applicant and by referring agencies for the effective delivery of services to the targeted population.

100

Attachments