We, LAUSD parents, staff, administrators, families, and friends call on all LAUSD Board Members to vote in favor of the Educational Equity and Achievement For All TITLE I Students Resolution sponsored by Board Members Tamar Galatzan and Monica Ratliff at the Regular Board Meeting on November 12, 2013.
TITLE I FUNDS (No Child Left Behind) are our nation's schools' biggest source of federal dollars. First established during Lyndon Johnson's War on Poverty, these funds are distributed to schools in an effort to assist students living in poverty bridge the academic achievement gap.
In 2011, our LAUSD Board of Education raised the LAUSD TITLE I eligibility threshold from 40% to 50% requiring a school to have at least 50% of their student population qualify for the federal free/reduced lunch program in order to receive TITLE I FUNDS. The 40% threshold was in place since 2001.
This threshold increase resulted in many of our schools losing hundreds of thousands of dollars of these antipoverty TITLE I FUNDS that led to severe cuts to vital intervention programs, positions, and services that serve our neediest students. One school with 49.7% of its students qualifying for free/reduced lunch receives NO TITLE I FUNDS while a school with a 50% poverty index receives hundreds of thousands of dollars in TITLE I FUNDS. Many schools come in just above or below the threshold on the basis of fewer than five lunch applications.
• ELIGIBLE STUDENTS IN 40-50% TIER SCHOOLS DESERVE TITLE I FUNDING
• RESTORE TITLE I ELIGIBILITY THRESHOLD BACK TO 40% WHERE IT WAS FOR OVER TEN YEARS
• RETURN THRESHOLD BACK TO 40%, THE SAME THRESHOLD USED BY MANY OTHER LARGE URBAN SCHOOL DISTRICTS LIKE CHICAGO, SAN DIEGO, SANTA ANA, ETC.
• OUR SCHOOLS IN 40-50% TIER CANNOT FUNDRAISE OUT OF HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS OF DOLLARS IN TITLE I FUNDING CUTS
• HELP OUR SCHOOLS MAINTAIN PARENT COORDINATORS, MATH AND SCIENCE STUDY GROUPS, COUNSELORS, AND OTHER SERVICES FUNDAMENTAL TO HELPING OUR DESERVING STUDENTS BRIDGE THE ACHIEVEMENT GAP
We urge all LAUSD School Board Members to vote in favor of EDUCATIONAL EQUITY AND ACHIEVEMENT FOR ALL TITLE I STUDENTS RESOLUTION on November 12, 2013!!!!
We ask that you sign our Petition to urge LAUSD School Board Members to vote in favor of this Resolution on November 12, 2013
EDUCATIONAL EQUITY AND ACHIEVEMENT FOR ALL TITLE I STUDENTS RESOLUTION
Whereas, LAUSD is committed to providing all children a world-class education regardless of socio-economic status or any other factor, and children living in material poverty are especially deserving of services to help them achieve academically;
Whereas, For decades the federal government has recognized that children living in poverty require additional support to reduce the academic achievement gap;
Whereas, In 1965, President Lyndon Johnson established Title 1 to help poor children perform as well as their middle class peers;
Whereas, Title 1 funds are intended to provide support for children living in material poverty;
Whereas, 80% of LAUSD students qualify for free and reduced price lunch programs (Title I);
Whereas, Federal Title I funding is based on Census figures, dispensed to the states, and sent to local school boards to disburse;
Whereas, Local school districts decide what the Title I eligibility threshold is for allocating funds for their District, with 35% the lowest threshold permissible under federal law;
Whereas, In 2011, due to a reduction of $34 million from the previous year’s disbursement (9.2%) of federal Title I dollars, the LAUSD School Board raised the Title I eligibility threshold for Los Angeles schools from 40 to 50%;
Whereas, This change resulted in 23 LAUSD schools losing their Title I funds, which can equate to between $150,000 and $600,000 per school;
Whereas, A school that has 49.7% of students qualifying for free and reduced lunch receives no Title I money, but a school that has 50% of students qualifying can receive hundreds of thousands of dollars;
Whereas, The Chicago Public Schools, the third largest school district in the nation, allocates Title 1 funds on a tiered model to every school where more than 40% of students are eligible to receive free and reduced price lunch. In 2011, the Chicago Public Schools lost $19.5 million (6.2%) in federal Title I funds from the previous year, but they kept their Title I eligibility threshold at 40% for schools; and
Whereas, San Diego Unified School District and Santa Ana Unified School District, both of which are similar large urban school districts in California, have a Title I threshold of 40%;
now therefore be it
That the Governing Board of the Los Angeles Unified School District directs the Superintendent to lower the Title I eligibility threshold back to 40%, with three tiers of funding that increase with need: 40-50%, 50-65%, and 65-100%
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