Yep, it is true, the DoEd recently announced they will be accepting applications for new projects under the Carol M. White PEP Program. The CFDA number is 84.215F if you would like to look up the new guidelines once they are published. The guidelines are scheduled to be released sometime on or shortly after 01.15.2009.
I will take some time and publish my thoughts on the new guidelines once I have had the chance to carefully review them. I don't think they will change too much, but I do expect clearer guidance on the GRPA requirements for grant recipients. I am also hopeful that the guidance published for reviewers by the DoEd is clearer and put an emphasis on research-based programs.
It seems a larger than desired percentage of recipients that are approved are not exactly clear on what type of program they would like to implement nor the true scope and sequence of their program. It is a shame that some of the federal dollars go to these districts. Trust me, I have seen it first hand and it is a waste of this resource.