Way down towards the end of our budget session last night, I asked about ESEA reauthorization and Title I. In particular, I'd gotten some alerts yesterday about this amendment that Senator Burr of North Carolina filed, which would end of the "hold harmless" provision of Title I. The amendment was adopted.
As Gregg Bares noted from the floor, ESEA reauthorization is kind of a mess; what the Senate is considering is miles away from anything the House has, and it's not clear that anyone agrees with the President. In particular, the sticky issue of just how much accountability the federal government can or should demand and what that looks like, is very much in play, which is why we're seeing another round of editorials on this now.
Title I, though, is the big carrot on anything in ESEA; most of what the federal government can force states to do is through tying things to that (and other) funding. It's $10 million for the Worcester Public Schools, and, as was mentioned last night, it's what's funding a lot of what's going on with schools that have exited Level 4 status.
So if you wonder sometimes why I talk so much about what happens in Washington and Malden, this is why. It's real money and it's real impact on Worcester's kids.