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Federal Funds coming to Saline?

March 14, 2009

The U.S. Department of Education recently released initial guidelines for some of the components to the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA).   Given the most recent information, I wanted to take an opportunity to update you on what we know.  The rules and regulations for the distribution of these funds aren’t complete but the information provided does give us an initial look at criteria for distribution.

The Michigan Department of Edcuation estimates that ARRA funding will provide Michigan with $2.5 billion in the following 10 program categories:

State Fiscal Stabilization Fund            $1,600.0 million

Title I, Part A Grants                           $390.0 million

Title I, School Improvement Grants     $75.0 million

IDEA, Part B, Special Education            $400.6 million

IDEA, Part C, Infants & Toddlers          $12.5 million

IDEA, Part B, Preschool                        $13.5 million

Education Technology Grants              $24.5 million

Education for Homeless Children        $2.5 million

Emergency Food Assistance Program  $3.9 million

Food Equipment Assistance                 $2.5 million

Estimated Michigan Total:                 $2.525 Billion

Most ARRA resources will flow from the U.S. Department of Education to the State and then down to the local districts.  As a result, guidelines for distribution of these resources must be developed at both Federal and State levels. No one at this point can say definitively how these funds can be utilized at the district level or how much will get to the local district.

The State of Michigan has also developed a State Recovery Cabinet.  Its responsibilities will include coordinating statewide and local efforts around ARRA resources.  There will be an education coordinator appointed to the cabinet and that individual should be named later next week.

The bottom line for Saline Area Schools is that we need to thoughtfully plan for spending these one-time dollars in ways that position us for future efficiency and effectiveness. Our goal is to use the funds as a bridge to the future, not a patch to the past.

One Comment leave one →
  1. S Gross permalink
    March 22, 2009 7:24 pm

    Now that the per pupil distribution of federal dollars has been determined, it is very clear that Michigan needs a stronger voice in D.C.
    The formulas did not take into account who really needs the money.
    The State of Washington has the dubious problem of overfunding for state unemployment, yet this state received the greatest amount of federal aid : $2,112 per student. Wyoming is also considered well-funded with oil and gas revenues and teachers’ starting pay of $41,500; ironically it is also among the states getting the greatest funding per pupil. North Carolina, which has no budget problems, is receiving $1,734 per student.
    Unfortunately Michigan falls into the 3rd tier (1,400 – 1,500 per pupil). Michigan school districts should scream loud and long about this inequitable distribution, particularly given the current outlook here.
    NY Times 03.22.09 page 1

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