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National Research Service Award (NRSA) Childcare Costs

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From NIH Notice Numbers: NOT-OD-21-074  & NOT-OD-21-177

Background

In April 2021, NIH began providing childcare cost support to recipients of full-time NRSA fellowships in recognition that the high cost of childcare impacts graduate students and post-doctorates funded through NRSA fellowships, and hinders their ability to successfully complete their training and fully participate in the extramural research workforce (NOT-OD-21-074). As Phase 2 of this initiative, anticipated for awards made beginning in Fiscal Year 2022, NIH will begin providing childcare cost support to full-time predoctoral and postdoctoral trainees appointed on NRSA institutional research training awards.

Applicability

The NRSA childcare costs apply to full-time NIH-NRSA-supported fellowship positions and each full-time predoctoral or postdoctoral NIH-NRSA-supported institutional research training award appointment; undergraduate appointees are not eligible. Each full-time NIH-NRSA-supported fellow and full-time predoctoral or postdoctoral NRSA appointed trainee is eligible to receive $2,500 per budget period for childcare costs provided by a licensed childcare provider. For households where both parents are eligible full-time predoctoral or postdoctoral NRSA trainees or full-time NIH-NRSA-supported fellows, each parent is eligible to receive $2,500.

Childcare costs are permitted for dependent children living in the eligible full-time predoctoral or postdoctoral NRSA fellow or trainee’s home from birth until the age of 13, or, for children who are disabled*, until age 18. Childcare costs do not apply to elder or non-child dependent care costs.

Policy

Fellows

Each NRSA fellow may request $2,500 per budget period to defray childcare costs. Childcare must be provided by a licensed childcare provider. Recipients must maintain all supporting documentation (e.g., proof provider is licensed) and make it available to NIH officials upon request. NIH does not require recipients to submit this supporting documentation with each request.

The NRSA childcare costs are not tied to payback obligations, nor should it be reported as such.

When childcare costs are awarded, they are generally restricted and cannot be re-budgeted without prior written approval from the NIH awarding IC. In cases of early termination, recipients may not use any unused portion of the childcare costs. It will remain unobligated and will be adjusted by the agency as part of the closeout process.

Applicants and recipients may request the NRSA childcare costs as part of new applications, continuation applications (Type 5), or as an administrative supplement request (Type 3).

Trainees

NIH will provide an annual $2,500 per each full-time predoctoral or postdoctoral NRSA trainee appointment slot at the time the new, renewal, or continuation award is made. NIH will not provide childcare support for short-term predoctoral or postdoctoral NRSA trainees regardless of the activity code. For active awards, NIH anticipates beginning to award the additional $2,500 in childcare costs per trainee slot at the time of the next continuation award starting in Fiscal Year 2022.

For childcare costs to be considered allowable, eligible full-time predoctoral or postdoctoral NRSA trainees must be appointed to the NRSA institutional research training award prior to use of the childcare costs.

The NRSA childcare costs are not tied to payback obligations, nor should it be reported as such.

Childcare must be provided by a licensed childcare provider. Recipients must maintain all supporting documentation (e.g., proof provider is licensed) and make it available to NIH officials upon request. NIH does not require recipients to submit this supporting documentation except when specifically requested.

When childcare costs are awarded, they are restricted. Only eligible full-time predoctoral or postdoctoral NRSA trainees may use the costs and they must be used for childcare expenses; any unused funds cannot be rebudgeted and must be reported as an unobligated balance on the Federal Financial Report (FFR). The awarding IC will offset any unused funds in future years or will adjust the amount as a part of the closeout process.

Application Instructions for Fellows

New Applications

Applicants are strongly encouraged to request childcare costs for all applicable years that the project will be funded based on the dependent(s)’ age eligibility factor.

PHS Fellowship Supplemental Form

  • For the first year requested, all fellowship applicants are required to specify the requested childcare costs in field 28b (Supplementation from Other Sources: Amount, Number of Months, Type, and Source) on the PHS Fellowship Supplemental Form.
    • Enter $2,500 for the Amount
    • Enter 12 for the Number of Months
    • Enter ‘Childcare Costs’ (without quotation marks) as the Type
    • Enter NIH as the Source.

R&R Other Project Information form

  • For any additional years requested, applicants must provide the request as an ‘Other Attachment’ on the R&R Other Project Information form.
  • The attachment must be named “Childcare_Cost_Request.pdf” (without quotation marks). The attachment must specify the requested childcare costs amount, and number of years requested. The Recipients are not required to submit supporting documentation with each request. Recipients must maintain all supporting documentation (e.g., proof provider is licensed). NIH reserves the right to request proof at any time.

Continuation Applications

Current fellows may request childcare costs for future years via the Research Performance Progress Report (RPPR). In Section G.1 of the RPPR, recipients must upload a PDF named "Childcare_Cost_Request.pdf" (without quotation marks). The attachment must specify the requested childcare costs amount and number of years requested. Applicants are strongly encouraged to request childcare costs for all remaining years that the project will be funded based on the dependent(s)’ age eligibility factor. Recipients are not required to submit supporting documentation with each request. Recipients must maintain all supporting documentation (e.g., proof provider is licensed). NIH reserves the right to request proof at any time.

Administrative Supplements

Current fellows may request an administrative supplement to provide childcare costs on an existing award. Applications should be prepared in either the NIH ASSIST system (SoM) or Cayuse (all other schools) and must be submitted using Notice of Special Interest NOT-OD-21-070. Applicants are strongly encouraged to request childcare costs for all remaining years that the project will be funded based on the dependent(s)’ age eligibility factor.

PHS Fellowship Supplemental Form

  • For the first year requested, all fellowship applicants are required to specify the requested childcare costs in field 28b (Supplementation from Other Sources: Amount, Number of Months, Type, and Source) on the PHS Fellowship Supplemental Form.
    • Enter $2,500 for the Amount
    • Enter 12 for the Number of Months
    • Enter ‘Childcare Costs’ (without quotation marks) as the Type
    • Enter NIH as the Source.

R&R Other Project Information form

  • For any additional years requested, applicants must provide the request as an ‘Other Attachment’ on the R&R Other Project Information form.
  • The attachment must be named “Childcare_Cost_Request.pdf” (without quotation marks). The attachment must specify the requested childcare costs amount, and number of years requested. The Recipients are not required to submit supporting documentation with each request. Recipients must maintain all supporting documentation (e.g., proof provider is licensed). NIH reserves the right to request proof at any time.

SeRA Supplement Proposal Development Routing Form (PDRF)

SoM fellows requesting an administrative supplement to provide childcare costs on an existing award should contact the RMG Fellowship Office.

Non-SoM fellows requesting an administrative supplement to provide childcare costs on an existing award, in addition to preparing the administrative supplement application in Cayuse, the fellow or supporting department also needs to within SeRA initiate, complete and route a SeRA Supplement Proposal Development Routing Form (PDRF).

Application Instructions for Training Grants

New, Renewal, and Continuation Applications

Childcare costs will be provided, unless otherwise specified on the notice of award, based on the number of trainee slots awarded. No additional action is needed on the part of the applicant at the time of application to request these funds.

Reporting for Continuation Applications

In Section G.1 of the RPPR, recipients must upload a PDF named “Childcare_Costs.pdf” (without quotation marks). The attachment must specify the number of trainees who used childcare costs in the reporting period. System enhancements are forthcoming that will incorporate reporting via xTrain. Additional information and implementation guidance will be issued.

*Defined as those with a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities, as described in the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, as amended.

Stanford Process

Childcare Stipend for NRSA Fellowships

NRSA Individual Fellows (F30, F31, F32, and F33 recipients) may request $2,500 per budget period to defray childcare costs.

Fellow Information

  • Work with your department research administrator and institutional official (RMG for SoM, OSR for all other schools) to request these funds for your specific NRSA application/award - See above Application Instructions for Fellows.
  • Once awarded by NIH, in order to receive these funds, the fellow must complete the Stanford Request for Payment NRSA Childcare Costs Form and submit it to their department administrator.

Department Administrator Information

  • Once Child Care Costs are awarded with the F30, F31, F32, and F33 NOA, then OSR will budget the funding for these costs in a separate task.
  • Completed forms from the fellow should be attached to the SeRA project record.

Childcare Stipend for NRSA Training Grants

Full-time NRSA Training Grant trainees may request $2,500 per budget period to defray childcare costs.

Trainee Information

  • Beginning in FY22 NIH will award the additional $2,500 in childcare costs per trainee slot at the time of the next continuation award i.e. no separate sponsor request should be needed to secure these funds from the NIH.
  • In order to receive these funds, the trainee(s) must complete the Stanford Request for Payment NRSA Childcare Costs Form and submit it to their department administrator.

Department Administrator Information

  • OSR will budget the funding for these costs in a separate task.
  • Completed forms from the trainee(s) should be attached to the SeRA project record.

Resources

Stanford Request for Payment NRSA Childcare Costs Form


Need further NRSA Childcare Costs assistance? Have questions, feedback, or are experiencing other issues? Please reach out to your OSR Post Award Research Accountant