SOUTH FLORIDA SCHOOL DISTRICTS FACE MAJOR LOSS
South Florida school districts stand to lose millions of dollars if proposed Title I amendments pass when Elementary and Secondary Education Act legislation (H.R. 5 – The Student Success Act) is on the House floor this week. The proposed amendments would severely impact K12 education and disproportionately harm Florida’s large school districts. Florida is estimated to lose over $107 million in Title I dollars for disadvantaged students, with South Florida school districts losing approximately $45.6 million.
Proposed legislation would cut funding from school districts with large numbers of students in poverty and redistribute that money to school districts around the country. Miami-Dade County, with the most eligible students in Florida, would lose $25.4 million for fiscal year 2014.
Title I, Part A of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, provides financial assistance to districts and schools with the highest shares of children from low-income families. Title I is grounded on sound research: economic disadvantages and concentrated poverty correlate with student academic needs, and require enrichment services to achieve K12 standards. Cuts that target areas of greatest need, following hard upon the federal sequester and lingering state/local recessionary cuts, will inevitably compromise student achievement. Ill-advised efforts to re-allocate federal Title I support away from high-need districts would immediately cut services in eligible schools and ultimately reduce graduation rates, weaken our cities and workforce outcomes, and add to the public tax burden rather than strengthening our economic competitiveness.
Title I cuts targeting America’s highest-need schools and districts are contrary to solid education policy, economic interests, and fairness principles and would be especially harmful to South Florida’s urban districts.
Call on the Governor, Commissioner of Education, House and Senate Leadership alongside our Florida Congressional Members to assist in protecting our neediest students in Florida.
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