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

The Professional Development Program (PDP) 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 and administrators; 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 PDP, participants and institutions are required to comply with the payback obligation rules and requirements outlined in the program regulations at 34 CFR § 263.1-12. The PDP was reauthorized in 2015 under the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) which can be found on the Department of Education (ED) website for the Office of Indian Education (OIE) ( The program regulations guide the service payback obligation tracking requirements, which places the burden on OIE for ensuring that participants comply with their service obligation. 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 PDPDCS Frequently Asked Questions