Florida School Business - Spring/Summer 2010 - (Page 10)

BUSINESSMANAGEMENT ARRA Funds: Fueling Education Reform in Florida BY DENNIS W. BEGA SE SENIOR POLICY ADVISOR, U.S. DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION, ATLANTA, GA Last February, Congress passed the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA), providing a massive infusion of funds to jumpstart the U.S. economy. This historic investment included $100 billion for education. The Recovery Act is helping to keep teachers in classrooms and children learning in schools all across America. The law’s goals are to save education jobs and promote education reform. This country’s school business officials are on the front lines of school economic recovery planning. In Florida, ASBO members and their teams are working hard to ensure that stimulus dollars lay a foundation for lasting reform and bring the maximum benefit to Sunshine State students. Your vision and good decisions have never been more needed. An educated workforce is the key to America’s long-term prosperity. As President Obama said, countries that outeducate us today will out-compete us tomorrow. The President and U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan also believe that education is the civil rights issue of our time. No matter their income, zip code, race, language background or disability 10 FASBO SPRING - SUMMER 2010 status, every child is entitled to a quality public education. From Florida’s Panhandle to Key West, ARRA funds have been instrumental parts in the state’s efforts to keep school systems operating at a high level. Using funds for staff support, new program development and expansion of efforts in Title I and for students with disabilities, Florida has been a beneficiary of ARRA and continues to invest those funds for the benefit of Florida’s K-12 students. The 2020 Goal, a Cradle-toCareer Vision, and a New Federal Role President Obama has called for us to reclaim America’s position as the best educated, most competitive workforce in the world. To do this, he has set a bold goal: by 2020, the U.S. will again have the world’s highest proportion of college graduates. To accomplish this, America must close the achievement gap and raise the bar so that all students graduate from high school ready for college and careers. The administration has also identified four major areas where U.S. education falls short and the strategies to address them. These are the four reforms laid out in the ARRA: college- and career-ready standards and assessments for all students; comprehensive data systems that meet the principles in the America COMPETES Act; effective teachers and leaders; and interventions to turn around low-performing schools. These goals and priorities are driving investments in education at every level— from early education, to K-12 reform, to college access. It’s a cradle-to-career agenda, one that starts at birth and follows children every step of the way with the ultimate goal that they graduate from a two-year or four-year college. But change of this scope requires rethinking the federal role. Secretary Duncan is committed to transforming the U.S. Department of Education from a compliance-driven bureaucracy into an engine of innovation. He sees the federal government’s role as providing a common

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Florida School Business - Spring/Summer 2010

Florida School Business - Spring/Summer 2010
Message from the President
Big Issues for Schools: Budget, Class Size
ARRA Funds: Fueling Education Reform in Florida
District Ready for H1N1
2010 FASBO Conference Preview
Advertisers Marketplace
Index of Advertisers

Florida School Business - Spring/Summer 2010