Poor kids need less money
According to the New York Times:
A new analysis of federal money that public schools receive for low-income students shows that a record number of the nation's school districts will receive less in the coming academic year than they did for the one just ended.
That's great. Now I've had some very good discussions with Jenny D. and others on this blog before about funding levels where I couldn't pin down exactly how much was enough. But I'm pretty sure that Jenny D. -- and just about everybody else -- would agree that spending less money on the education of the poorest students is not a good idea.
Nearly 9,000 districts with predominantly poor student populations will receive less money.
...Mr. Fagan [of the Center for Education Policy] said the increasing number of districts that are losing money is making it harder for the schools to meet the goals of the federal No Child Left Behind Act, the Bush administration's signature education program, which measures progress through annual tests in math, reading and science. That is giving critics of the program more ammunition to accuse the administration of underfinancing the program while demanding greater results.
As if we needed more ammo.
But really, this is a huge problem for Democrats and moderate Republicans. We were told when NCLB passed with overwhelming bipartisan support that it would be fully funded. It has not been. And now, not only is it not being funded, thousands of districts are losing money aimed at their neediest students just as they are responsible for meeting NCLB's rising standards.
Critics do indeed have more ammo, and my guess is there will be even more critics real soon, too.