Stimulus Spending and Expanded Learning

By Mary-Ellen Phelps Deily — May 19, 2010 1 min read
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More budget-crunch news, this time from the Washington-based Council of the Great City Schools. “Investing Wisely and Quickly,” a study the council released this week, explores how the nation’s big-city school districts used federal stimulus dollars to sustain programs—including expanded-learning initiatives—and avoid firing teachers.

But the report also predicts a huge funding decline—"at least $4 billion in revenue for the nation’s urban districts"— for the 2010-11 school year, unless additional federal money materializes, my colleague Dakarai I. Aarons reports on his District Dossier blog. That’s alarming news for expanded learning when you consider the programs supported by the sudden infusion of stimulus money.

According to the report, stimulus dollars—including additional Title I funds tied to the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act—were used to support, among other programs:

  • Extended-day offerings for children with disabilities in Clark County (that includes Las Vegas), Nev.
  • Expanded learning in Atlanta, including Saturday academies and before- and after-school programs,
  • Summer school programs in Boston, and
  • Extended-learning programs for students in need in Houston.

The council is calling on Congress to pass a $23 billion edujobs bill to keep schools financially stable. Council officials surveyed school districts to compile their report on school-stimulus spending.

A version of this news article first appeared in the Beyond School blog.