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Under new instructions from the US Department of Education, school districts and charter school organizations may have an additional 18 months to spend Covid assistance for K-12 public schools.
In a letter to the Association of School Superintendents (AASA), the department proposed to consider expanding for local educational agencies that have allocated funds for certain capital projects, but funding has not yet been eliminated by the end of September 2024 to use $ 122. billion allocated to K-12 schools in the US Rescue Plan. In a later email to Education Week, an Education Department official said the extensions could apply to all types of contracts in all three rounds of primary and secondary school assistance (ESSER). Requests for extension will be received through public education authorities.
Washington State Education Funding
“The department understands the need for schools to address urgent and urgent projects, including school infrastructure projects aimed at protecting the health and safety of students, teachers and staff during this pandemic,” wrote Roberto Rodriguez, assistant secretary of the Planning Office. Evaluation and policy development. The letter emphasizes the importance of improving heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) systems and reiterates the Department’s warning about major construction projects.
Washington State’s Broken Model For Higher Education Funding”
School district leaders have expressed concern that natural delays in supply projects, exacerbated by supply chain problems, will prevent schools from spending their federal aid until the end of funding by the end of 2024. According to a FutureEd analysis, about half of school districts and charter schools plan to invest some of the money received from Covid in upgrading heating, ventilation and air conditioning, and a third spends on disease prevention repairs, a category that includes lead restriction and mold removal, according to with FutureEd analysis of spending plans for more. more than 4,700 districts and charters drawn up by Burbio.
In addition to helping Covid, President Joe Biden’s latest budget proposal will more than double the amount the federal government invests in schools with concentrated poverty, a move the president has tried and failed to achieve this fiscal year.
The 2023 fiscal year, announced in March, will provide $ 88.3 billion for the U.S. Department of Education, including $ 36.5 billion for Title I schools that support students from low-income communities. It also requires $ 16.3 billion for students with disabilities. The spending plan aims to provide $ 1 billion to more school mental health professionals, including school counselors, nurses, school psychologists and social workers. In addition, Biden’s offer will also benefit from full-service public schools, English-speaking students, and in-house teacher recruitment programs.
The new budget proposal came less than a month after Congress approved a spending plan that provided $ 42.6 billion for K-12 schools for the rest of the fiscal year, $ 2 billion more than last year with additional funding for schools. that offer students. serve those living in poverty for mental health services and public school programs. the omnibus plan was far less ambitious than the budget proposed by President Joe Biden and approved by the House of Representatives last fall.
Washington State K 12 Funding Debacle…and Failure
The largest share of K-12’s money in this figure, $ 17.5 billion, will go to the Title I program, which serves students with disabilities. That’s $ 1 billion more than last year, compared to the $ 20 billion increase originally proposed by Biden. Another $ 13.3 billion will go to subsidies to support students with disabilities, which is more than in fiscal year 2021, but below the level of funding offered during the pandemic. About $ 2.2 billion will be spent on training and supporting educators, and $ 1.2 billion on subsidies to support school safety and student health.
The proposal does not include an extension of the exemption, which allows schools to continue to provide free meals to all students, but provides $ 26.9 billion for children’s meals in the Ministry of Agriculture’s budget.
In total, the Department of Education will receive $ 76.4 billion in K-12 and higher education from a $ 1.5 trillion package to run the government and provide additional support to Ukraine. Biden’s other initiative, the Build Back Better initiative, remains silent. The $ 1.75 trillion plan will provide more funding for K-12 schools, as well as about $ 400 billion, to make childcare more accessible and guarantee six-year funding for universal pre-schooling for children ages 3 and 4.
In the fall, Biden signed a $ 1.2 trillion infrastructure package that provides schools with money to remove lead pipelines, expand broadband access and purchase electric school buses. Infrastructure funding will come in addition to the nearly $ 200 billion that Congress has allocated to support public schools in the Covid area. The U.S. Department of Education approved all 51 state plans to spend federal money, and counties developed plans and began spending their share of funding under the U.S. Rescue Plan (ARP).
Education Funding In Washington State
To help manage spending, the department has published a FAQ that sets out the rules for states to review local plans for spending ARP money and other assistance to school districts. It makes it clear that state legislatures or education departments cannot restrict how places use money if their use is within federal law. And states and cities can’t use that help to make a clean day. Further guidance, published in November, explains how districts can use funding for transportation, including to address the shortage of school bus drivers in many places.
The department’s leadership also reiterates the need for states and local counties to use “evidence-based” interventions to help students recover from lost study time during a pandemic, and explains that evidence-based definitions are similar to those in “Every Student succeeds. ” Act. “Given the new context created by the COVID-19 pandemic, activities should not generate such evidence during a COVID-19 pandemic to be considered evidence-based,” the guide explains. The new website provides best practices for using the help desk to safely open schools and support students’ academic and social emotional needs.
The guide makes it clear that schools can use federal dollars to pay for health-related expenses required for safe opening, including vaccinations and tests for students and staff, as well as for any outreach work. in the community needed to help students and families convince them of this. safe to return to school.
The construction of schools is a permitted use of Covid assistance, including new projects, renovation of ventilation systems and the purchase of trailers. But the instruction warns against large-scale capital projects, which will require too much money and include not only government approval, but also complex requirements for the use of federal money for such purposes. “Reconstruction, reconstruction and new construction often take a long time, which may not be feasible in the short term,” – to provide assistance, which should begin in September 2024.
How Much Funding Is Needed For Mccleary?
The money can be used to support non-traditional students, including 2020 graduates who have not yet found work or opportunities after high school, as well as adult students, including English-speaking students. Last month, the agency released new information on support for homeless students.
In April, the Department issued a temporary rule that states develop and submit plans to spend their share of the $ 122 billion that the U.S. rescue plan is reserved for K-12 public schools. The department also provided a template for state plans, which will be presented on June 7.
Local school districts and charter networks are required to develop cost plans and submit them to their state education office. Like government plans, these proposals should include information on safe mitigation strategies, evidence-based measures, other cost plans, and an explanation of how costs will be met by the needs of students with disabilities. Local counties should also contact the community and review their plans every six months for possible changes.
Under the rule, states set deadlines for local plans to be received within 90 days of local organizations receiving dollars. Since then, Department of Education officials have said that states can extend the deadlines for plans and encourage local counties to review them periodically. In addition, the law requires counties to submit a plan for the safe rebuilding of schools within 30 days of receiving the money, a requirement that applies to all counties, regardless of current schooling.
State Funding For Higher Education Remains Far Below Pre Recession Levels In Most States
Earlier, the Department of Education published a Comprehensive Guide on how counties and states can navigate the so-called “support” clause, designed to ensure that federal money is used to empower education, not just state and national replacements. local dollars that schools now hold. This item appears in all three Covid assistance packages, and the guide highlights the differences between the laws. It also provides rules for exemption from this requirement.
Recognizing the differences in how the state calculates school finances, management provides general principles for evaluating support efforts. Non-compliant states may lose future dollars or have to recover existing funds.
In addition, the department has published guidelines that explain how states and school districts can meet the requirements for using federal Covid assistance in a way that provides equivalent support to schools struggling with concentrated poverty.
The department has issued a manual for the safe opening of schools and another to meet the needs of all students. He also provided an estimate of how much money each state can expect to receive
What Does It Mean To Fully Fund Education?
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