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shall be, for 1999–2000 and succeeding academic years, the same amount as the institutional payment made for 1998–1999 adjusted annually thereafter in accordance with inflation as determined by the Department of Labor's Consumer Price Index for the previous calendar year.

(2) REDUCTION.—The institutional allowance paid under paragraph (1) shall be reduced by the amount the institution charges and collects from a fellowship recipient for tuition and other expenses as part of the recipient's instructional program.

(b) USE FOR OVERHEAD PROHIBITED.-Funds made available pursuant to this subpart may not be used for the general operational overhead of the academic department or program. SEC. 716. (20 U.S.C. 1135e) AUTHORIZATION OF APPROPRIATIONS.

There are authorized to be appropriated $35,000,000 for fiscal year 1999 and such sums as may be necessary for each of the 4 succeeding fiscal years to carry out this subpart. Subpart 3—Thurgood Marshall Legal Educational

Opportunity Program

SEC. 721. [20 U.S.C. 1136) LEGAL EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITY PRO

GRAM. (a) PROGRAM AUTHORITY.— The Secretary shall carry out a program to be known as the “Thurgood Marshall Legal Educational Opportunity Program” designed to provide low-income, minority, or disadvantaged college students with the information, preparation, and financial assistance to gain access to and complete law school study.

(b) ELIGIBILITY.-A college student is eligible for assistance under this section if the student is

(1) from a low-income family;
(2) a minority; or

(3) from an economically or otherwise disadvantaged background.

(c) CONTRACT OR GRANT AUTHORIZED.-The Secretary is authorized to enter into a contract with, or make a grant to, the Council on Legal Education Opportunity, for a period of not less than 5 years

(1) to identify college students who are from low-income families, are minorities, or are from disadvantaged backgrounds described in subsection (b)(3);

(2) to prepare such students for study at accredited law schools;

(3) to assist such students to select the appropriate law school, make application for entry into law school, and receive financial assistance for such study;

(4) to provide support services to such students who are first-year law students to improve retention and success in law school studies; and

(5) to motivate and prepare such students with respect to law school studies and practice in low-income communities.

(d) SERVICES PROVIDED.-In carrying out the purposes described in subsection (c), the contract or grant shall provide for the delivery of services through prelaw information resource centers, summer institutes, midyear seminars, and other educational activities, conducted under this section. Such services may include

(1) information and counseling regarding

(A) accredited law school academic programs, especially tuition, fees, and admission requirements;

(B) course work offered and required for graduation;
(C) faculty specialties and areas of legal emphasis; and

(D) undergraduate preparatory courses and curriculum selection;

(2) tutoring and academic counseling, including assistance in preparing for bar examinations;

(3) prelaw mentoring programs, involving law school faculty, members of State and local bar associations, and retired and sitting judges, justices, and magistrates;

(4) assistance in identifying preparatory courses and material for the law school aptitude or admissions tests;

(5) summer institutes for Thurgood Marshall Fellows that expose the Fellows to a rigorous curriculum that emphasizes abstract thinking, legal analysis, research, writing, and examination techniques; and

(6) midyear seminars and other educational activities that are designed to reinforce reading, writing, and studying skills of Thurgood Marshall Fellows.

(e) DURATION OF THE PROVISION OF SERVICES.—The services described in subsection (d) may be provided

(1) prior to the period of law school study;
(2) during the period of law school study; and

(3) during the period following law school study and prior to taking a bar examination.

(f) SUBCONTRACTS AND SUBGRANTS.–For the purposes of planning, developing, or delivering one or more of the services described in subsection (d), the Council

on Legal Education Opportunity shall enter into subcontracts with, and make subgrants to, institutions of higher education, law schools, public and private agencies and organizations, and combinations of such institutions, schools, agencies, and organizations.

(g) STIPENDS.—The Secretary shall annually establish the maximum stipend to be paid (including allowances for participant travel and for the travel of the dependents of the participant) to Thurgood Marshall Fellows for the period of participation in summer institutes and midyear seminars. A Fellow may be eligible for such a stipend only if the Thurgood Marshall Fellow maintains satisfactory academic progress toward the Juris Doctor or Bachelor of Laws degree, as determined by the respective institutions.

(h) AUTHORIZATION OF APPROPRIATIONS.—There are authorized to be appropriated to carry out this section $5,000,000 for fiscal year 1999 and each of the 4 succeeding fiscal years.

Subpart 4—General Provisions

SEC. 731. [20 U.S.C. 1137) ADMINISTRATIVE PROVISIONS FOR SUB

PARTS 1, 2, AND 3. (a) COORDINATED ADMINISTRATION.-In carrying out the purpose described in section 700(1), the Secretary shall provide for coordinated administration and regulation of graduate programs assisted under subparts 1, 2, and 3 with other Federal programs providing assistance for graduate education in order to minimize duplication and improve efficiency to ensure that the programs are carried out in a manner most compatible with academic practices and with the standard timetables for applications for, and notifications of acceptance to, graduate programs.

(b) HIRING AUTHORITY.-For purposes of carrying out subparts 1, 2, and 3, the Secretary shall appoint, without regard to the provisions of title 5, United States Code, that govern appointments in the competitive service, such administrative and technical employees, with the appropriate educational background, as shall be needed to assist in the administration of such parts. The employees shall be paid without regard to the provisions of chapter 51 and subchapter III of chapter 53 of such title relating to classification and General Schedule pay rates.

(c) USE FOR RELIGIOUS PURPOSES PROHIBITED. No institutional payment or allowance under section 703(b) or 715(a) shall be paid to a school or department of divinity as a result of the award of a fellowship under subpart 1 or 2, respectively, to an individual who is studying for a religious vocation.

(d) EVALUATION.- The Secretary shall evaluate the success of assistance provided to individuals under subpart 1, 2, or 3 with respect to graduating from their degree programs, and placement in faculty and professional positions.

(e) CONTINUATION AWARDS.—The Secretary, using funds appropriated to carry out subparts 1 and 2, and before awarding any assistance under such parts to a recipient that did not receive assistance under part C or D of title IX (as such parts were in effect prior to the date of enactment of the Higher Education Amendments of 1998) shall continue to provide funding to recipients of assistance under such part C or D (as so in effect), as the case may be, pursuant to any multiyear award of such assistance.

PART B-FUND FOR THE IMPROVEMENT OF

POSTSECONDARY EDUCATION

SEC. 741. (20 U.S.C. 1138) FUND FOR THE IMPROVEMENT OF POST

SECONDARY

EDUCATION. (a) AUTHORITY.—The Secretary is authorized to make grants to, or enter into contracts with, institutions of higher education, combinations of such institutions, and other public and private nonprofit institutions and agencies, to enable such institutions, combinations, and agencies to improve postsecondary education opportunities by

(1) encouraging the reform, innovation, and improvement of postsecondary education, and providing equal educational opportunity for all;

(2) the creation of institutions, programs, and joint efforts involving paths to career and professional training, and combinations of academic and experiential learning;

(3) the establishment of institutions and programs based on the technology of communications;

(4) the carrying out, in postsecondary educational institutions, of changes in internal structure and operations designed to clarify institutional priorities and purposes;

(5) the design and introduction of cost-effective methods of instruction and operation;

(6) the introduction of institutional reforms designed to expand individual opportunities for entering and reentering institutions and pursuing programs of study tailored to individual needs;

(7) the introduction of reforms in graduate education, in the structure of academic professions, and in the recruitment and retention of faculties; and

(8) the creation of new institutions and programs for examining and awarding credentials to individuals, and the introduction of reforms in current institutional practices related thereto.

(b) PLANNING GRANTS.—The Secretary is authorized to make planning grants to institutions of higher education for the development and testing of innovative techniques in postsecondary education. Such grants shall not exceed $20,000. SEC. 742. (20 U.S.C. 1138a) BOARD OF THE FUND FOR THE IMPROVE

MENT OF POSTSECONDARY EDUCATION. (a) ESTABLISHMENT.—There is established a National Board of the Fund for the Improvement of Postsecondary Education (in this part referred to as the “Board”). The Board shall consist of 15 members appointed by the Secretary for overlapping 3-year terms. A majority of the Board shall constitute a quorum. Any member of the Board who has served for 6 consecutive years shall thereafter be ineligible for appointment to the Board during a 2-year period following the expiration of such sixth year. (b) MEMBERSHIP.

(1) IN GENERAL.- The Secretary shall designate one of the members of the Board as Chairperson of the Board. A majority of the members of the Board shall be public interest representatives, including students, and a minority shall be educational representatives. All members selected shall be individuals able to contribute an important perspective on priorities for improvement in postsecondary education and strategies of educational and institutional change.

(2) APPOINTMENT OF DIRECTOR.—The Secretary shall appoint the Director of the Fund for the Improvement of Postsecondary Education (hereafter in this part referred to as the "Director”). (c) DUTIES.-The Board shall

(1) advise the Secretary and the Director on priorities for the improvement of postsecondary education and make such recommendations as the Board may deem appropriate for the improvement of postsecondary education and for the evaluation, dissemination, and adaptation of demonstrated improvements in postsecondary educational practice;

(2) advise the Secretary and the Director on the operation of the Fund for the Improvement of Postsecondary Education, including advice on planning documents, guidelines, and procedures for grant competitions prepared by the Fund; and

(3) meet at the call of the Chairperson, except that the Board shall meet whenever one-third or more of the members request in writing that a meeting be held.

(d) INFORMATION AND ASSISTANCE.—The Director shall make available to the Board such information and assistance as may be necessary to enable the Board to carry out its functions. SEC. 743. (20 U.S.C. 1138b) ADMINISTRATIVE PROVISIONS.

(a) TECHNICAL EMPLOYEES.—The Secretary may appoint, for terms not to exceed 3 years, without regard to the provisions of title 5, United States Code, governing appointments in the competitive service, not more than 7 technical employees to administer this part who may be paid without regard to the provisions of chapter 51 and subchapter III of chapter 53 of such title relating to classification and General Schedule pay rates.

(b) PROCEDURES.—The Director shall establish procedures for reviewing and evaluating grants and contracts made or entered into under this part. Procedures for reviewing grant applications or contracts for financial assistance under this section may not be subject to any review outside of officials responsible for the administration of the Fund for the Improvement of Postsecondary Education. SEC. 744. (20 U.S.C. 1138c) SPECIAL PROJECTS.

(a) GRANT AUTHORITY.—The Director is authorized to make grants to institutions of higher education, or consortia thereof, and such other public agencies and nonprofit organizations as the Director deems necessary for innovative projects concerning one or more areas of particular national need identified by the Director.

(b) APPLICATION.—No grant shall be made under this part unless an application is made at such time, in such manner, and contains or is accompanied by such information as the Secretary may require.

(c) AREAS OF NATIONAL NEED.-Areas of national need shall initially include, but shall not be limited to, the following:

(1) Institutional restructuring to improve learning and promote productivity, efficiency, quality improvement, and cost and price control.

(2) Articulation between 2- and 4-year institutions of higher education, including developing innovative methods for ensuring the successful transfer of students from 2- to 4-year institutions of higher education.

(3) Evaluation and dissemination of model programs.

(4) International cooperation and student exchange among postsecondary educational institutions.

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