CanCode Program: Applicant guide 2021-2024
How to apply
The deadline to submit applications for CanCode is August 30, 2021 at 11:59:59 pm PST. Applications must be submitted electronically to the CanCode general mailbox (firstname.lastname@example.org). An acknowledgment e-mail confirming receipt of an application will be sent.
What to submit?
When submitting your application, please include the following documents:
- CanCode Application Form
- CanCode Application Quantitative Data Workbook
- Proof of Incorporation as a not-for-profit organization in Canada
- Any letters of support from individuals, organizations and/or financial contributors (if applicable to the delivery of your proposed project)
- Financial statements for the last two years (audited preferred)
- Signed Attestation Form
This Applicant Guide was developed to assist in the completion of the Application Form and the Quantitative Data Workbook. If you have further questions, we invite you to check the Frequently Asked Questions at FAQ website page. For general questions and comments, please contact the CanCode team. Please note that the Department of Innovation Science and Economic Development Canada will not be assisting applicants in the development of their applications.
|Telephone (toll-free in Canada):||1-800-328-6189|
|TTY (for hearing-impaired):||1-866-694-8389|
|Business hours:||8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Eastern Standard Time|
|By mail:||CanCode Program
Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada
C.D. Howe Building
235 Queen Street, 1st floor, West Tower
Ottawa, ON K1A 0H5 Canada
1. Program overview
The Department of Innovation Science and Economic Development Canada (ISED) has launched the third phase of the CanCode Program, under Budget 2021. This program is a non- repayable contribution program that will invest up to $80 million over three fiscal years (starting in 2021-2022 and ending in 2023-24) to provide Canadian students (kindergarten to grade 12) and their teachers opportunities to develop digital skills including coding, data analytics and digital content development. CanCode is focused on traditionally underrepresented groups in STEM including girls, Indigenous youth, youth with disabilities, black youth and youth residing in rural and remote communities including the North.
2. Program definitions
Digital skills are skills needed to engage with computers and the internet. CanCode is designed to provide students (kindergarten to grade 12) the opportunity to learn digital skills, including coding, data analytics, and digital content development with the intention of moving youth from passive consumers of digital content to active creators of digital technology and content.
Traditionally underrepresented groups in STEM
- Girls (including those identifying as girls)
- Youth with disabilities
- Black youth
- Indigenous youth
- Youth residing in rural and remote* areas including the North
*Rural and remote areas are non-metro localities (i.e., with a population density less than 100,000 inhabitants and with a distance that is outside the commuting zone of these metro centres).
3. Program objectives
The CanCode Program objectives are as follows:
- provide students (kindergarten to grade 12) opportunities to develop digital skills including coding, data analytics and/or digital content creation);
- provide digital skills training and professional development to pre-service, elementary, and secondary teachers, and;
- develop educational resources to support and enhance digital skills and coding learning initiatives and teacher training and development initiatives;
- encourage participation and intensity of training for underrepresented groups;
- to be fully self-sustainable at the end of the program (financing from other sources), with the exception of organizations serving primarily underrepresented groups. These organizations are still expected to demonstrate progress to self sustainability.
4. Project duration
Projects may start as early as September 1, 2021. All funded activities and components must be completed by no later than March 31, 2024.
5. Program funding
The CanCode Program will be investing up to $80 million in funding through contribution agreements with selected recipients.
- The opportunity to apply for funding will be held through a Call For Proposals.
- The total funding available for the program is $80 million over three fiscal years (2021-22 to 2023-24).
- The applicant must clearly demonstrate the need for the contribution and demonstrate that the requested amount is the minimum amount required to achieve the project objectives.
- The level of funding provided by the program will be contingent upon an assessment of the application and the availability of program funds.
- A recipient cannot receive more than $5 million in ISED funding per stream per fiscal year.
- A recipient may distribute contributions to ultimate recipients that are also not-for-profit organizations that are incorporated in Canada to expand or improve coverage of training across Canada. The primary recipient will be responsible for all of the terms and conditions outlined in a contribution agreement.
Maximum Contributions and Stacking Limits
CanCode proposal applications may include funding from other federal departments and/or agencies, other orders of government, private sector or not-for-profit partners. However, the total funding from all government sources (federal, provincial/territorial and municipal) cannot exceed 100% of eligible costs.
6. Eligibility criteria
To qualify for funding, your organization must be a not-for-profit organization that is incorporated in Canada. Proof of incorporation such as a business number, article of incorporation and/or charitable registration number is required.
Not-for-profit organizations are legal entities that are incorporated under federal, provincial, or territorial legislation for purposes other than generating a profit for its shareholder. Post-secondary institutions, schools, school boards, and school districts are not eligible for direct funding through the program. These organizations can, however, partner with eligible not-for-profit organizations.
Your application must also clearly demonstrate that:
- Your organization or partners has a minimum of 3 years experience in the delivery of coding and digital skills initiatives at the time of application for funding with a proven track record of success;
- Your proposed initiative will target at least one traditionally underrepresented group in the STEM field;
- The proposed initiative will be delivered at no cost to participants (i.e. no participant user fees);
- Your organization will have the resource capacity and expertise with program funding, either internally or through partnerships, to successfully deliver the proposed initiative within the program time frame September 1, 2021 to March 31, 2024, and agree to accurately measure and report on success;
- How your organization plans to be fully self-sustainable at the end of the program (exception for organizations serving primarily underrepresented groups which are still expected to demonstrate progress to self sustainability).
Note: Applicants are encouraged to collaborate with a network of partners (not-for-profit organizations) to submit an application. One not-for-profit organization must take the lead on the application and submit the application on behalf of all partners. These partners will be considered part of the initiative and cannot submit a separate application for the same project.
Not-for-profit organizations that already deliver coding and digital skills training could apply to expand their programming and broaden their geographic reach in terms of underrepresented groups.
7. Merit criteria
Merit criteria will be used to establish a priority ranking of eligible applicants. The following criteria will be taken into consideration:
- The organization's history and purpose, directors, memberships, activities and experience, financial statements and forecasted financials for the project period (financial statements for the last two years are requested to support the application for funding, and to assess the organization's financial viability. Applications with audited financial statements are preferred and may be given priority consideration);
- The organization's capacity to undertake and successfully complete the project, including the qualifications of key individuals carrying out the proposed activities;
- The description of the proposed project, including location(s), work plan, budget, schedule, project benefits/results, and all information deemed necessary to assess the application;
- The identification and understanding of project risks and proposed mitigation measures;
- The organization's plan to be self-sustainable by the end of the program
- The organization's project contributors and/or partners including their roles and resources in support of the project;
- The representation that the organization is in good standing with regard to all federal, provincial, territorial and municipal laws and regulations;
- The amount of any federal, provincial, territorial or municipal assistance received or likely to be received for the project;
- The organization's plan and capacity to deliver to underrepresented groups;
- In the event that contributions are to be distributed by an eligible recipient to one or more ultimate recipients, the initial eligible recipient shall demonstrate that they have the appropriate resources, internal governance, network and processes in place to receive, evaluate, approve and monitor applications that meet program objectives.
8. Eligible activities
The proposed CanCode project's activities must explicitly and directly align with at least one of the two funding streams available through CanCode:
CanCode has two available funding streams to which Applicants can apply
Stream 1: Students training opportunities: the development and delivery of interactive training and skills development initiatives for students (kindergarten to grade 12) to learn digital skills, coding, and related concepts including artificial intelligence (AI) and digital content creation.
Student training opportunities are defined as follows:
|Training Duration||Opportunities this training counts for|
|1-5 hours (low intensity)||1 training opportunity each|
|6-15 hours (medium intensity)||2 training opportunities each|
|15+ hours (high intensity)||3 training opportunities each|
Stream 2: Teachers training opportunities: the development and delivery of interactive training and professional development initiatives for teachers to acquire the skills and confidence to introduce digital skills, coding and related concepts including AI and digital content creation into the classroom, and;
the development of educational resources to support and enhance digital skills and coding learning initiatives and teacher training and development initiatives.
Applicants can choose to apply to a single funding stream or to both funding streams.
9. Training accommodations
Official Languages: The coding and digital skills training must be offered or available to participants in at least one official language (English or French). Official language requirements will be addressed within the clauses of the contribution agreement with selected applicants. Please identify on the Application Form the language of your proposed program delivery (English and/or French and/or other).
Accessibility: It is expected that accessibility needs are taken into account when providing digital skills and coding training by ensuring that the required assistive technologies are available to participants. Specific requirements will be addressed within the clauses of the contribution agreements with successful applicants.
10. Eligible and ineligible costs
Eligible costs are costs that are directly related to the approved project and fully adhere to all terms and conditions set out in CanCode. These costs will be outlined in the contribution agreement and include:
- costs associated with the delivery of coding and digital skills learning opportunities (e.g., program design, communication and outreach, salaries, room rentals, travel that is authorized according to the Treasury Board Travel Directive at the time of travel, etc.);
- incremental administrative costs* (e.g. administrative salaries, overhead, accounting expenses, office supplies, etc), and;
- costs associated with the purchase, rental or repair of technological equipment/materials (e.g.bcomputers, tablets, technology-based consumables, etc) required for the delivery of the learning opportunities (up to 20% of eligible costs funded by ISED**).
* A recipient's administrative costs will be limited to 10% of ISED's funding through the CanCode program. Exceptions up to a maximum of 30% of total ISED funding will be considered and negotiated at the time of signing a contribution agreement for recipients headquartered in Canada's North (YT, NT, or NU).
** Eligible costs associated with technological equipment and materials will be considered only in cases where an organization demonstrates the need for such equipment to expand or scale-up an existing program.
Ineligible costs are those costs that are not covered under CanCode. Some examples include:
- expenditures that are not related to the CanCode program;
- expenditures incurred before the date of eligibility or after the project completion date;
- accounting and administrative expenses related to existing organizational activities;
- costs associated with the construction of or major renovation to building and structures;
- the purchase or lease of land;
- hospitality where the primary benefactor is the organization and/or an ineligible participant group, and;
- all costs associated with travel outside Canada.
11. CanCode quantitative data workbook
The CanCode Quantitative Data Workbook is an application document that details the proposed project's budget. The budget must include sufficient information to determine if project costs meet the following requirements:
- All requested funding is for eligible costs of the CanCode Program;
- All requested funding is reasonable and necessary to ensure that the proposed project is successfully completed and the objectives of the project are achieved;
- The requested funding does not exceed the $5 million per fiscal year per stream in ISED funding;
- Each fiscal year of requested funding is detailed separately;
- The proposed budget includes identification of in-kind contributions, other government funding, and all other sources of funding including partners and other contributors to the project.
- Eligible in-kind contributions are included in the calculation of the total project cost. To be eligible, the in-kind contributions must be for goods or services that are both eligible under the program and necessary to deliver the project. In-kind contributions must be detailed in the application but will not be reimbursed by ISED.
12. Anticipated training locations
Applicants are asked to provide the most specific information possible when identifying training locations. Outside of the metropolitan areas, please refer to the numeric identifier(s) available on the Census Divisions Map when the actual address or postal code are not known. In metropolitan areas, the first three digits of the postal code may be used if the full postal code is not known. Please refer to the example provided on the Training Events and Participant tab on the CanCode Quantitative Data Workbook.
Please note that when accessing the map, you can zoom in on its content by holding the control button on your keyboard and scrolling up on your mouse wheel (or by hitting the + key). The identifier is in small black text, and typically located in the middle of the area it is identifying.
13. Assessment process
All applications will be assessed through a competitive process against the program's eligibility and merit criteria. ISED will select proposals for funding that optimize program objectives and ensure equitable access to services across Canada for eligible participants.
Applicants must clearly demonstrate the extent to which the proposed project meets all criteria when completing the application. The strongest applications will be those that clearly explain how the proposed project will meet the eligibility and merit criteria as opposed to those that simply state a criterion will be met. ISED reserves the right to remove from consideration those applications found to be incomplete. ISED may request supplemental documentation for assessment purposes.
14. Project reporting
Applications selected to be recipients of program funding will be required to submit data, schedules, updates and reports with specific requirements outlined in a contribution agreement with ISED.
Recipient reporting will enable the Minister to:
- assess the progress of the project and the results achieved;
- carry out the post-completion monitoring called for in the contribution agreement; and
- support evaluation of the Program in accordance with the evaluation plan of the Department.
15. Timing and method of payments
Expenditures will be eligible for federal reimbursement subject to the date of the last signature fully executing a contribution agreement. Expenditures incurred prior to the full execution of an agreement, as well as any expenditure related to contracts signed prior to the full execution of an agreement are ineligible for reimbursement. The Minister may approve payments to cover eligible costs retroactive from the date of the departmental signature to no earlier than the Minister's conditional approval date*.
Payments to recipients will be made in one of the following forms:
- Payments will be made on the basis of documented claims for reasonable eligible costs incurred and will be submitted by the recipient not more frequently than quarterly; or
- Payments may be made in the form of advance payments according to recipients' quarterly cash flow requirements to be provided to the Minister by the recipient as part of its Annual Corporate Plan, or as requested by ISED. For each fiscal year, recipients will provide evidence satisfactory to the Minister that all eligible expenditures have been incurred and paid, as requested by the Department.
Each claim is to be accompanied by a progress report of the work completed, as well as details and documentation of all costs being claimed, in a form satisfactory to the Minister. The report will cover the progress made on the relevant project milestones and activities. All claims shall be certified by an authorized officer of the recipient. The Minister may request at any time that recipients provide satisfactory evidence to demonstrate that all eligible costs claimed have been paid.
Prior to the reimbursement of final payments of an agreement, the Minister may, at the Minister's discretion, withhold an amount of the Contribution from the total amount of Eligible Costs claimed at any point in time. The Minister shall determine the percentage of the hold back based on the amounts of the Contribution, as set out in the Project Budget, and using the then-current Assessment of Risk.
* Where an application is selected for conditional approval to receive funding, expenditures from the date of the conditional approval will be deemed eligible for reimbursement, subject to fully executing a contribution agreement. If a contribution agreement is not signed, ISED will not reimburse any costs incurred.
16. Program definitions
|Applicant||Individual or entity that has applied for a transfer payment.|
|Contribution||Transfer payment subject to performance conditions specified in a contribution agreement. A contribution is to be accounted for and is subject to audit.
Contributions are non-repayable per the terms and conditions of CanCode.
|Contributor||Partner that provides cash or in-kind contributions to the applicant/recipient's project.|
|Eligibility Date||Earliest date on which eligible costs may be incurred. Cannot be prior to the date that the application for funding has been received.|
|Eligible Costs||Project costs that are incurred by the recipient and which, in the opinion of the Minister, are reasonable and required to carry out the eligible activities to which they relate. Eligible costs are those costs on which the contribution will be paid.|
|Ineligible Costs||Project costs that are not eligible under the program.|
|In-kind Contributions||Non-monetary resources and cash-equivalent goods or services provided to the applicant/recipient in support of the project. The in-kind contributions must be for goods or services that are both eligible under the program and necessary to deliver the project.|
|Partner||An entity that may receive funding from the applicant/recipient in support of direct delivery of the project activities.|
|Recipient||Individual or entity that has been authorized to receive a transfer payment or that has received a transfer payment.|
|Primary Recipient||The lead individual or entity on a multi-applicant application that that has been authorized to receive a transfer payment or that has received a transfer payment.|
|Terms and Conditions||Document, approved by Treasury Board or a minister, which sets out the parameters under which transfer payments may be made for a given program.|
|Total Government Funding||Total funding provided by the federal, provincial, territorial and municipal governments for the project.|
|Total Eligible Costs||Total amount of project costs that are eligible under the program and for which the contribution will be paid. Total eligible costs exclude costs that are deemed ineligible under the program.|
|Total Project Cost||The total cost of the project including: total government funding (federal, provincial/territorial, and municipal), and all other sources of funding including amounts from partners and other contributors to the project, and the total value of all in-kind contributions for the project.|
|Transfer Payment||Monetary payment, or transfer of goods, services or assets made, on the basis of an appropriation, to a third party, including a Crown corporation, that does not result in the acquisition by the Government of Canada of any goods, services or assets. Transfer payments are categorized as grants, contributions or other transfer payments. Transfer payments do not include investments, loans or loan guarantees.|
Personal information provided in the CanCode Application Form and Proposed Budget Form is protected under the Privacy Act, however, other information provided by organizations signing a contribution agreement with Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada is not protected under this legislation. This information could be provided to any entity requesting it under the Access to Information and Privacy Act. Information on the federal government's Access to Information Act is available on the following website: http://laws-lois.justice.gc.ca/eng/acts/A-1/
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