Behind the Headline: Here’s Why $7 Billion Didn’t Help America’s Worst Schools



By 11/11/2015

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On Top of the News
Here’s Why $7 Billion Didn’t Help America’s Worst Schools 
Politico | 11/3/15

Behind the Headline
School Improvement Grants and the Lessons of History
Education Next blog | 11/22/13

Caitlin Emma has a long piece in Politico about the federal School Improvement Grants program that looks at “what two troubled high schools tell us about why the government got so little for so much money.”

As Emma explains, the Obama administration sent $3 billion in stimulus funds to the program starting in 2009 to help turn around the nation’s lowest performing schools.  She writes

Six years later, the program has failed to produce the dramatic results the administration had hoped to achieve. About two thirds of SIG schools nationwide made modest or no gains — not much different from similarly bad schools that got no money at all. About a third of the schools actually got worse.

Andy Smarick has written extensively about the problems with the School Improvement Grants program for Education Next, in particular here, here, and here.

– Education Next

P.S. In a “fact check” piece over at the 74, Matt Barnum writes “Hey Education Pundits, Stop Writing Early Obituaries for School Improvement Grants




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