TheTechProfe's Blog

Learnings about technology integration in education from a local ed tech head in the Monterey Bay.

Obama’s education plan would revise assessments, funding goals

The Obama administration proposed Monday to rebrand the federal government’s primary K-12 education funding vehicle as the College-and-Career Ready Students grants, according to budget documents and interviews released Monday.

U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan also said that the administration will be in the coming months unveiling new details of a new proposal that would shift the federal government’s education assessment system from one based solely on annual test scores to a growth model.

Although early reports indicated that the administration would also seek elimination of the existing 2014 deadline for students nationwide to reach proficiency, Duncan told reporters Monday that no final decision has been made.

The White House said that currently the federal government oversees too many programs that have similar purposes or create fragmented and inefficient funding streams that “too often led to a greater focus on complying with program requirements rather than improving student outcomes.” Officials said that rather than running large numbers of separate grant competitions and monitoring compliance, they propose to consolidate 38 programs into 11 new ones while eliminating 6 programs.

Proposed for elimination are:

·         Leveraging Educational Assistance Partnerships, $63.9 million.

·         Byrd Honors Scholarships, $42 million.

·         Exchanges with Historic Whaling and Trading Partners, $8.8 million.

·         Loan Repayment for Civil Legal Assistance Attorneys, $5 million.

·         Underground Railroad Program, $1.9 million.

·         B.J. Stupak Olympic Scholarships, $1 million.

On the issue of the proficiency deadline, Duncan said he wants to have high standards that everyone in the country would be expected to reach.

“The goal is to have a high bar, high standards and have everybody shooting to hit that bar,” he said. “An artificial focus on this year, last year – although no decision has been made, there’s lots of ideas on the table, but we’ll absolutely be committed to having a more rigorous bar showing a real race to the top.”

The proposed budget would provide $4 billion in additional funding for public education next year, which includes $1.35 billion to make the Race to the Top competition permanent. There’s also $1 billion that would be contingent on Congress acting this year on a reauthorization of the No Child Left Behind Act.

While the name of Title I grants would be changed to the College-and-Career Ready Students grants, officials said Monday there would be no change as to how the money is distributed. There will be other grants for schools in low-income neighborhoods tied to competitions, but not the Title I grants.

To read more visit: http://www2.ed.gov/about/overview/budget/budget11/summary/edlite-section4.html#esea