Monday, August 23, 2010

Welcome Back and Welcome Funds

Teachers open the door, but you must enter by yourself. old Chinese proverb
Welcome back hard working educators.

After a great deal of lobbying from educators all over the country, school districts now have a new infusion of federal money to spend on educators. The Education Jobs Fund Program was a response to frightening number educator layoffs across the country. Without intervention schools would be under staffed and the fledgling economic recovery would suffer a setback. Fortunately, Congress acted and most of the laid off educators across the country will be returning to classrooms this autumn.

Delaware school districts will receive almost $27.5 million. The federal money will be passed through the state to local school districts using either a Title 1 funding formula or a school foundation formula. A state may not use more than 2% of the allocation for administrative costs. School districts will receive the money within the next few weeks.

According the United States Department of Education's Initial Guidance for States on the Education Jobs Fund Program: "An LEA (local school district) must use its funds only for compensation and benefits and other expenses, such as support services, necessary to retain existing employees, to recall or rehire former employees, and to hire new employees, in order to provide early childhood, elementary, or secondary educational and related services."

A school district may not use funds for district level administrators, for consultants, or for any contracted-out service.

A school district which has already found a way to rehire laid off employees may save the funds for use no later than September 30, 2012.

US Education Department officials say that there is a great deal of accountability and transparency for school districts on the use of the funds.

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