The National Governors Association last week urged congressional leaders to include $650 million for states that have taken in students displaced by Hurricanes Katrina and Rita in an emergency spending bill under consideration.
States such as Texas say the $4,000 to $5,000 per student reimbursement the Department of Education is currently projecting will not cover their costs. Part of the proposed boost in hurricane education money, about $300 million, could be used to reimburse states for this school year, while the other $350 million could be used to educate displaced students next year, according to the April 10 letter from the NGA.
The Senate Appropriations Committee included the $650 million in its version of the spending bill, approved earlier this month. The bill would have to be approved by the full Senate, and reconciled in a conference committee with the House-approved version, which does not include the extra education funding.