This in via e-mail from the office of Governor Ted Strickland, I’m not sure at this point what impact it could have on TPS or any of our other area schools, but the complete release and links included in the release are below.
Ohio Receives $132 Million in Federal School Improvement Funds
Resources to Help Struggling Schools Improve Academic Performance
Columbus, OH – Ohio Governor Ted Strickland and State Superintendent of Public Instruction Deborah Delisle announced today that the U.S. Department of Education has approved Ohio’s application for $132 million in School Improvement Grant (SIG) funds.
These resources are aimed at helping struggling schools improve academic performance. The $132 million award is part of the $3.5 billion that will be made available to states this spring from money set aside in the 2009 federal budget and the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.
“We’re grateful for these federal resources, which will greatly improve the ability of our lowest-performing schools to develop a strategy for improvement that fits their unique circumstances,” Strickland said. “We need to do our part to help struggling schools meet their administrative and academic challenges and ensure a quality learning environment for the students in those districts.”
As part of the SIG application process, the Ohio Department of Education was required to identify the lowest achieving five percent of schools in two categories – Title I schools in school improvement and Title I eligible secondary schools – using criteria outlined in guidance from the U.S. Department of Education.
“We are very pleased that Ohio has been approved for this source of funding. These funds will help schools take necessary steps to dramatically improve student achievement,” Delisle said. “Once eligible schools have been funded, ODE will begin working closely with them to ensure that their goals focus on enhancing the achievement of their students and to strengthen the teaching and learning process.”
Detailed information on SIG grants:
The federal guidance requires states to put all eligible schools into the following three Tiers:
* Tier I Schools – lowest achieving five percent of Title I schools in school improvement status or Title I secondary schools with a five year graduation rate less than 60 percent.
* Tier II Schools – lowest achieving five percent of Title I eligible secondary schools or Title I eligible secondary schools with a five year graduation rate less than 60 percent.
* Tier III Schools – All Title 1 schools in school improvement status that are not in Tier I are put into Tier III for the purpose of using SIG funds.
With the SIG grant, schools identified as Tier I, Tier II or Tier III are eligible to apply for competitive grants of $50,000 to $500,000 over three years. Tier I and Tier II schools will receive priority for funding and will be required to implement one of four intervention models:
* The Turnaround Model, which replaces the principal and rehires no more than 50 percent of the staff. The new principal is given operational flexibility in staffing, school calendar and budgeting to implement a comprehensive approach to improving student outcomes.
* The Restart Model, which converts a school or closes and reopens a school under a charter school operator, a charter management organization or educational management organization that has been selected through a review process.
* The School Closure Model, which closes the school and reassigns students to higher-achieving schools within the district.
* The Transformation Model, which implements each of the following strategies:
o Replace the principal and work to increase teacher and school leader effectiveness;
o Institute comprehensive instructional reforms;
o Increase learning time and create community-oriented schools; and
o Provide operational flexibility and sustained support. Tier III schools will be eligible for funding once Tier I and Tier II schools have been funded. Tier III schools will not be required to implement one of the intervention models; however, they will be required to implement school improvement strategies based on student needs.
Ohio’s application for the SIG grants is available at link.