Out-of-School Time RFP Q&A

Responses to Questions about Say Yes Cleveland’s Out-of-School Time Program RFP

Below in bold are responses from Say Yes Cleveland to questions submitted by providers to the Out-of-School Time Program RFP. (Reminder: Proposals will be accepted until midnight of Wednesday, July 17, 2019.)

  1. What is the page limit, font size & spacing requirement (DS/SS) for the Program Profile? Where is Program Profile submitted (I don’t see a spot for it in the online application)? What is the page limit, font size & DS/SS for Program Profile? Where is Program Profile submitted (we don’t see a spot for it in the online application)?

See RFP instructions on website. There are no font or font size requirements. The Program Information Form (excel sheet) and other required documents should be uploaded where indicated at the bottom of the Proposal Submission Form. **Please note that all open-ended responses on the Proposal Submission Form are capped at 4000 characters due to technical limitations.

  1. Do the programs have to be after school – can they be during the day?

At this time, we are only considering programs that take place after school time.

  1. What is the budget cap per school per program? There isn’t a budget amount designated within the RFP, does that mean that you will determine the amount each organization receives based upon their budget submitted?

The RFP does not include a budget cap. We are seeking proposals for what providers feel is a reasonable cost to provide a quality program.

  1. Can we submit more than 1 proposal per program or school?

Programs are not proposed for specific schools. Providers can propose more than one program in their submission.

  1. We would like to apply as both a coordinating provider and a specialized provider. Would you prefer that we submit a separate application for each provider type, or can we submit one application that covers both types of services?

If applying as both a Coordinating and Specialized provider, please submit a separate proposal for each.

  1. Are there any restrictions regarding the certificate of good standing from the Ohio Secretary of State? How current does the certificate of good standing from the Ohio Secretary of State need to be? If we have a certificate of good standing, do we need a certificate of continued existence?

Providers are required to submit a current Certificate of Good Standing from the Ohio Secretary of State. No certificate of continued existence is necessary. A current Certificate of Good Standing must be submitted to Say Yes Cleveland prior to contract execution.

  1. Our capacity will depend largely on how much time we have from notification to program implementation. Have you considered reducing the expectations of 1st semester to 6 or 8 weeks instead of 12 to allow time to recruit, hire, and train staff? Can we provide programming on a smaller scale 1st semester and then scale up and offer more 2nd semester after having time to recruit, hire, and train staff?

Since this is the first school year for the Say Yes Cleveland OST programming, we anticipate programs beginning in October, which will abbreviate 1st semester programming, and allow programs to scale up to full strength for the 2nd semester.

  1. How do we complete the form where it asks what the number of participants served will be? We could do a little or a lot. It depends on the level of funding received and time allowed to get staff in place.

Providers are asked to indicate both the proposed number of students for each program, along with the maximum number of students that could be served. These numbers should indicate what you feel is optimal and feasible in order to provide a quality, viable program.

  1. Can we partner with another organization to develop and implement a program? Can we contract with another agency on our own to do part of the program or would they also need to apply separately to be a Say Yes provider? If both agencies have to apply to be a Say Yes provider, is there a way to submit a joint proposal?

Yes, a provider can partner with other organizations to implement programs. To do so, the lead organization should apply as a Coordinating Provider, and the other should apply as a Specialized Provider. The Coordinating Provider should state the partner relationship under “Coordinating Provider Qualifying Evidence” on the Proposal Submission form.

  1. The RFP indicates a 1:18 staff/youth ratio, but it also says 2 staff/volunteers are required…. can you explain?

Programs are required to have a minimum ratio of 1 staff member to every 18 youths. In addition, a minimum of two adults must be on the premises, in case of emergency. The second adult is not required to be program staff.

  1. Will there be a school staff person at each site to serve as the second adult on-premises?

That hasn’t been determined yet, so providers should plan to have a second adult on-site.

  1. If there is no guarantee that CMSD staff will be onsite during the in-school programming who is liable in case of an injury or other negative incident involving a student? Are staff in this sense defined as teachers or does this include security guards and janitorial staff?

All providers are required to submit proof of liability insurance with their proposal. The possibility of having school personnel on-site during OST programming will be determined after the proposal submission period. For the purposes of this RFP, ‘staff’ refers to provider-designated professionals who will be conducting programming and supervising students. In addition to staff (in a minimum ratio of 1 to 18 youths), there must be at least one additional adult on premises who can assist staff in the case of an emergency.

  1. When applying as a provider, is it mandatory that we serve all 16 schools?

No, your capacity will determine how many schools you will be partnering with.

  1. Where can providers see a list of the 16 schools?

The list of schools is listed on the Say Yes Cleveland website.

  1. Can programs be held on school sites and off school sites?

Yes, programs can be located either.

  1. What is the length of the RFP cycle?

The RFP cycle refers to programming and funding for this school year.

  1. Is the RPF also for summer programing?

No, at this time we are focusing on the school year.

  1. What should we tell schools that approach our organizations directly?

For the 1st cohort of 16 Say Yes schools, OST programming will be coordinated through Say Yes Cleveland.

  1. When determining program costs, should direct and indirect cost be included?

Yes, both indirect and direct cost should be calculated into your cost per student.

  1. Can OST programming start at the beginning of the school year if the provider is ready?

No, the OST programs will begin in October 

  1. Can programming take place on Saturday?


  1. Can youths from non-Say Yes schools participate in OST programing alongside students from Say Yes schools?

Yes, but Say Yes can only fund the costs related to students from Say Yes schools.  

  1. What is the difference between coordinating vs specialized providers?

Coordinating providers organize and manage multiple different programs, some or all of which are conducted by Specialized Providers, which focus on their individual programs.

  1. What if I am already working with a Say Yes school and would like to stay?

In order to provide OST programming at a Say Yes school, a provider must submit a proposal to be considered. Specific programs for each school will be determined by school principals and Say Yes Cleveland.

  1. What does framework alignment mean?

Providers should carefully read the “Say Yes Cleveland Out of School Time Framework” section of the RFP and describe what makes their proposed programming special, particularly in relation to the Vision and Values outlined in the RFP. Additionally, proposals should reflect how a provider expects to impact students in the context of the program domains described on page 3 of the RFP.

  1. Can a provider be selected to deliver programming at more than one Say Yes school?

Yes, as long as the provider demonstrates sufficient capacity.

  1. What data is Say Yes planning to collect to assess OST program quality? Are partners responsible for collecting that information?

OST programming will be assessed over the course of the year using student satisfaction surveys, YPQA observation teams, program and school attendance, and parent focus groups. OST providers will only be expected to track program attendance.

  1. Will there be an RFP for in-school time programming?

No, our timeline at this point is only focusing on OST and, later this school year, summer programming.=

  1. Will there be a site coordinator at each school?

This has not yet been determined.

  1. Is there a frequency requirement for programs?

The Program Expectations section of the RFP includes detailed requirements for dosage, objectives etc.

  1. How is dismissal handled? Will youth attending the afterschool in-school programming have to arrive in the classroom within, for example, 15 minutes after dismissal or will students be allowed to come and go throughout the 2-hour time period?

Dismissal and related issues will be finalized as part of post-proposal discussions between providers, school leaders and Say Yes Cleveland.

  1. Are provider organizations responsible for student transportation home from in-school programs? If we’re a specialized service provider are there restrictions on reimbursing transportation?

Student transportation issues are still to be finalized. When completing the Program Information Form, please indicate for each program (under Column D) whether transportation is ‘Included in program Budget,’ ‘Not Necessary,’ or ‘Say Yes Support Requested.’

  1. Do agencies have to be Cleveland based?

No, our focus is on quality programing that understands our community.

  1. If a program is proposed for an off-school property location, are there requirements for the site? If a site is already a vendor with CMSD, will that the sufficient?

An off-school programming site must be in compliance with CMSD facility requirements and with the City of Cleveland Building and Zoning Codes.

  1. For programs in school buildings, should we assume facility-related expenses are included in the framework?

That is still to be determined, but proposals don’t need to include costs associated with custodial services, or with opening or closing buildings.

  1. If we say we can serve 30 students, does it have to be the same 30 students? I.e. if students move, will more students be added to replace them?

We want as many students receiving programming as possible, so every effort will be made to ensure that available program spots are filled when they become available.

  1. Is there a place to include letters of support in the proposal?


  1. Was participation in the RFP information session mandatory for applying?


  1. When is the due date for the letter of intent to submit a proposal?

There is no requirement to submit a letter of intent prior to applying.

  1. Is there enrollment data available for the schools?

CMSD can provide projected enrollment data.

  1. Are there caps on admin costs?

No, there are no specific caps. Just indicate your cost per student to fund what you think is a quality program.

  1. The RFP makes reference to Health and wellness interventions based on PPS data. Please define PPS data.

The Postsecondary Planning System is a way to connect students and their families with services and programs. PPS tracks 30+ indicators for each student, based on inputs from student, family, and staff surveys. These indicators help tell us if the student is on track to succeed. If a student is not on track, he or she can be connected to helpful services and receive extra support.

  1. Are the program period and hours of operation minimums for each program proposed, or are they minimums for each provider?

They are minimums for each program.

  1. If you have multiple organizations that provide similar programming, how will you determine which organization is the most effective or best equipped to provide the service/program?

Program proposals will be assessed holistically based on relevant experience, capacity, cost, responsiveness to RFP requirements, alignment with Say Yes Cleveland’s vision, values and framework, and the outcomes of post-proposal discussions between providers, school leaders, and Say Yes Cleveland.

  1. You are asking for 2 days minimum per week with 2 hours of programming each day, that sounds like you are looking for 48 hours of programming across a 12-week semester. Is it possible to submit fewer than 4 hours of programming per week? Does each program have to be 2 days at 2 hours each?

The first semester of programming this year will not be 12 weeks, just October through mid-December. Four hours of programming each week is the minimum requirement. Those programming hours need to be delivered over at least two sessions each week but could be conducted over more than two sessions.

  1. If less than 4 hours is not acceptable, can the 4 hours be met by providing programming for more than 1 grade level? For example, 2 hours of programming/week for grades 7-8 and 2 hours of programming/week for grades 5-6? Can the 2 days minimum be offered at different sites? For example, 1 day/week with 2 hours of programming at school A and repeating that same program at school B on another day that week? If the 4 hours minimum can be covered by offering programming to multiple schools, could the model instead be a 1-hour weekly program offered at 4 different schools over the course of the week?

No. The dosage and frequency requirements in this RFP describe the programming and touch points that each student in the program receives each week.

  1. Do you anticipate that there will be a different cohort of students participating in programming each 12-week semester, or will some/all of the students will engage in the same programming for all 24-weeks (both semesters)?

That will likely depend on specific student needs and school preferences, so that’s not possible to say at this time.

  1. If we are seeking to apply as a Coordinating Provider, do we reflect the costs associated with the coordinating role in the excel spreadsheet?

Yes, a Coordinating Provider should incorporate costs associated with the coordinating role into the Administrative Overhead field (column X) on the Program Information Form excel sheet.

49.Is there a word (or character) limit on the Proposal Submission Form?

All open-ended responses on the Proposal Submission Form are capped at 4,000 characters due to technical limitations.

50. If an organization has yet to file taxes what other documentation can be used to substitute?

For a new organization (first year), we would suggest a Certificate of Good Standing, along with the current year operating budget. 

51. What is the minimum liability insurance necessary?

Not less than: Bodily and Property Damage $1,000,000 combined single limit per occurrence, $2,000,000 general aggregate; and contractural liability limits of $1,000,000. 

52. The “dosage” of the program is currently at least 12 weeks per semester, at least 4 hours per week, spread over at least 2 days, for 1 specific group of youth. Additional youth would require a separate program. Is that correct?

The dosage and frequency requirements in this RFP describe the programming and touch points that each student in the program receives. So whether an OST program serves 5, 10 or 100 students, we would expect each student to receive at least the minimum dosage and frequency of programming.  

53. If a program is scheduled to follow that dosage, does it have to be (1) consistent person teaching or can the 48 hours of programming over the semester or can the program make use of multiple teachers? (i.e. If we run a visual arts program, can we offer 4 hours of ceramics, 4 hours of painting, 4 hours of paper making, etc)

It would not require one sole staff member over all programming, if that wouldn’t be consistent with the programming model. 

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