The Washington Post looks at how Title I formula changes are impacting to suburban Washington counties. All formulas are somewhat arbitrary and those on the short-end will always complain. And, often this issue is being used to call attention to overall NCLB funding issues rather than the allocation issue itself. Besides, considering Fairfax County’s astronomical assessed value per-pupil (which most school districts would kill for) it’s hard to gin up too much sympathy for their “plight.” NCLB’s focus on better targeting Title I funds to low-income students is one of its more laudable aspects.
However, there may be a problem with some of the data being used to make allocation determinations that are adversely impacting high poverty communities. Eduwonk’s still looking at the numbers so this isn’t ready for prime time, but in some places school districts that are experiencing an increase in low-income youngsters might be undercounted in the new allocations. Several possible causes: (A) formula problems (B) different methods for determining allocations for small school districts which may not be based on reliable data (C) problems with the census data because of possible undercounting of poor, minority, and immigrant students. B and C seem more likely culprits.
The New York Times reports that No Child Left Behind is facing obstacles in the states. True enough, put they pale compared to the obstacles it’s facing from The New York Times! Amazingly, no mention in this story of George Miller, The Education Trust, the Citizens Commission on Civil Rights. Probably just an oversight!
NYT’s Freedman writes up an interesting Rhode Island program. Dead white guys galore!
New data on reading teachers in elementary schools from NCES.
In the NY Sun, Kate Walsh of NCTQ says it’s time to move the debate about teacher quality forward. James Grissom of the California Department of Education says it’s time to reanalyze the data about bilingual education there.
Terrific Chronicle of Higher Education article ($) this week about steps that colleges and universities are taking to help incoming students who are in recovery from substance abuse.