Introduction to FAQs for the OIE Professional Development Program Work-Related Service Payback Requirements

The Professional Development (PD) program provides grants to eligible entities to—

  1. Increase the number of qualified Indian individuals in professions that serve Indian people;
  2. Provide training to qualified Indian individuals to become teachers, administrators, teacher aides, social workers, and ancillary educational personnel; and
  3. Improve the skills of qualified Indian individuals who serve in the education field.

Grant awards are made to Institutions of Higher Education (IHEs) through a competitive grant process. Awards can also be made to consortiums of IHEs with State or Local Education Agencies, Indian Tribes or organizations, or Bureau-funded schools. As a condition of participating in the Professional Development (PD) grant program, participants and institutions are required to comply with the payback obligation rules and requirements outlined in the program regulations at 34 CFR § 263.1-10. The full regulations can be found on the Department of Education (ED) website for the Office of Indian Education (OIE) ( These regulations also implement the service payback obligation tracking requirements, which places the burden for ensuring that participants comply with their service obligation on the OIE. While OIE developed the following guidance document in response to questions frequently asked by grantees and participants, it does not cover all aspects of the regulations and should not be used alone.

OIE DCS Frequently Asked Questions