Ga. to get $17.2M for low-performing schools
by The Associated Press
April 10, 2013 12:00 AM | 377 views | 1 1 comments | 3 3 recommendations | email to a friend | print
ATLANTA — Georgia will get $17.2 million in federal grant money as part of a plan aimed at improving some persistently low-performing schools.

The School Improvement Grants were announced Monday by the U.S. Department of Education.

Georgia schools competing for the grants have to identify problems, set goals and state how they would use the money to reach them. The funds would be used by Georgia schools to pay for teacher and principal training and to hire teacher coaches.

The program can be controversial since a school must agree to reforms that often include replacing the principal, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported.

Education officials generally support programs that put more money into schools, but tying receipt of the funds to faculty and principal changes has struck some as the wrong approach.

“I’m not sure that the research and experience over the past decade or so support the effectiveness of these rather dramatic interventions,” said Tim Callahan, director of public relations for the Professional Association of Georgia Educators.

“While such changes may need to be made — and they are certainly drastic — my take on it is that any improvements may be short-term,” Callahan said. Such interventions fail to significantly recognize the serious impacts and long-lasting effects of poverty on teaching and learning of students.”

Schools in Georgia are eligible to apply for a grant if they have a graduation rate lower than 60 percent and have ranked in the lowest 5 percent of schools on state tests in English, language arts and math for the past three years.
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April 10, 2013
What I am about to state will not be popular - but it deserves some thought. Why do we continue to funnel federal and state funds into low performing schools when it obviously is not working. Our low income and low performing schools receive:

1. Funds to provide free breakfast

2. Funds to provide free lunch

3. Funds to provide after school care

4. Funds to provide for students in these schools to receive extra instruction in reading.

5. Funds to provide for students in these schools to receive extra instruction in math.

6. Funds that provide for more teachers in the classroom.

7. Funds that provide for more teacher training.

8. Funds that provide for academic coaches in the school.

Our schools are ALREADY RECEIVING these funds. It is not working. These schools continue to perform poorly despite all that is already being done for them. It's time to get out of the box and do something more creative with your money, legislators. We need to get into the homes of these students and help improve their home life. Once we get families educated on the importance of education and the importance of the family unit, maybe will see an improvement in these schools. Teachers and schools can not be expected to do EVRYTHING for these students.

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