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What is the Carl D. Perkins V Grant?
The Perkins V grant program is the primary federal government investment in Career and Technical Education (CTE) to both secondary and postsecondary institutions. In total, it provides near $1.4 billion annually to Local Education Agencies (LEAs) across the nation (1)1. These funds help improve CTE programs by allowing educators to supplement their program with new software, equipment, training, learning excursions, and professional development.
The Perkins V grant is the newest iteration of the Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Act of 2006, previously known as Perkins IV, and brings with it greater spending flexibility and increased accountability for each state. It was signed into law on July 31, 2018 (2)2.
Who was Carl D. Perkins?
Carl Dewey Perkins was a politician from Kentucky who served as a part of the U.S. Army in Europe during World War II (3)3. He graduated from the Jefferson School of Law in Louisville, Kentucky in 1935 and in 1948 he was elected to the House of Representatives. He served as chairman of the General Subcommittee on Education and assisted grade schools, high schools, and vocational schools. In 1967 he was referred to as “…the most persistent education advocate in Congress” (4)4. He died in 1984 leaving behind a legacy of championing for public education, teachers, and everyone seeking a better life in America (5)5. Part of that legacy was the establishment of the federal Perkins Grant for CTE.
How can the Perkins V grant improve your own CTE program?
Unfortunately, educational programs across the nation suffer from a lack of funding. This prevents students from accessing and utilizing the newest software, equipment, and training that professionals in the workplace do. The Perkins V career and technical education grant helps alleviate this divide with funding to help supplement and improve programs—allowing educators to more regularly update their own CTE program resources.
What may Perkins V funds be used for?
The Perkins V act states that “each eligible recipient that receives funds under this part shall use such funds to develop, coordinate, implement, or improve career and technical education programs…” (2). This moderately broad description may be more clearly defined by your own state. Check your state’s CTE or Perkins website which may include a list of specific allowable and unallowable expenditures. A link to each state’s website can be found below in the “Who should I contact for more information about Perkins V?” section. You can also contact your local CTE director or coordinator with any questions you have regarding Carl D. Perkins career education funding use.
Generally, spending must be directly related to the CTE field of study—some appropriate uses may include:
- Program equipment, tools, and machinery
- Instructional materials—including support for library resources
- Training resources
- Learning excursions and travel expenses
- Career and labor market information
- Teachers and faculty professional development
- Work-based learning opportunities—simulated work environments
- Industry-recognized certification examinations
- Professional consultant costs
- Administrative costs—limited to no more than 5 percent of such funds
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How do I apply for Perkins V funding?
Each state is required to submit their own Perkins V state plan. Because of such, the process for applying for funding is different across the nation. In most cases, a Perkins application must be completed and submitted to your state’s department of education. This may be done individually or jointly through a consortium.
Most states provide funds directly to LEAs so before starting an application it’s best to reach out to the CTE director or coordinator at your institution. Most likely they are already familiar with the Perkins V process and can assist you in submitting an application. If you are unsure of who your CTE director or coordinator is or if they aren’t familiar with the Perkins V act, then contact your State’s CTE director and/or grant office directly. See the “Who should I contact for more information about Perkins V?” section below for both state and regional contacts who can assist you.
The general process for applying for the Perkins V CTE grant:
- Understand what the Perkins grant is and how its funding may improve your own CTE program
- Contact your local CTE director, coordinator, or leadership—they should have more information on applying and eligibility
- Create a plan to improve your own CTE program
- Fill out your state’s Perkins application, or submit the necessary CTE improvement plan information to the entity that will be submitting it—again, coordinate with your local CTE director/leadership
Who should I contact for more information about Perkins V?
Reach out to your local CTE director or coordinator first with any questions regarding the Perkins V grant, if you are unsure of who that is or they aren’t familiar with the Perkins V act, then reach out to the state or regional contact below:
Last updated: 1/30/2024
- “Perkins V.” Perkins Collaborative Resource Network. Accessed January 18, 2024. https://cte.ed.gov/legislation/perkins-v. ↩︎
- Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Act of 2006.” Gov Info. Accessed January 18, 2024. https://www.govinfo.gov/content/pkg/COMPS-3096/pdf/COMPS-3096.pdf. ↩︎
- Perkins, Carl Dewey.” Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. United States Congress, Accessed January 18, 2024. https://bioguide.congress.gov/search/bio/P000230.
“Perkins, Carl D.” Berea College Hutchins Library. Berea College, Accessed January 18, 2024. https://libraryguides.berea.edu/carldperkins ↩︎
- Perkins, Carl D.” Berea College Hutchins Library. Berea College, Accessed January 18, 2024. https://libraryguides.berea.edu/carldperkins ↩︎
- Rep. Carl D. Perkins Dies at 71; Led the Fight for Social Programs.” The New York Times, August 4, 1984. https://www.nytimes.com/1984/08/04/obituaries/rep-carl-d-perkins-dies-at-71-led-the-fight-for-social-programs.html. ↩︎