These reports offer a deep dive into Title I, its intricacies, inefficiencies and offer recommendations to improve this essential program.
For Release: January 24, 2023
Contact: Enrique A. Chaurand, 816-825-1072 cell, email@example.com
Washington – January 19, 2023 – All4Ed, a leading national advocacy nonprofit committed to expanding equitable opportunities for students of color, students from low-income families, and other marginalized groups, today released a series of reports “Understanding and Improving Title I of ESEA.”
As the largest federal source of funding for K–12 schools, the Title I program is an incredibly important part of the nation’s strategy to support school districts with many students from low-income families. Title I helps fill funding gaps, but without more equitable distribution of resources, including Title I dollars, students from low-income families will continue to face the same systemic disadvantages they did nearly 60 years ago when Title I was enacted.
“As a former local and state superintendent, I have first-hand experience regarding the vital role Title I plays in strengthening educational and racial equity for our students,” said Deborah Delisle, President and CEO of All4Ed. “Title I is a critical program that has allowed school districts to hire more teachers and counselors, offer after school programs for tutoring and essential extracurricular activities, but it can be made stronger. These reports offer a series of considerations that the federal government should incorporate into their efforts to continuously improve Title I and provide our nation’s students with all the resources that they need to succeed, regardless of their zip code. Our children deserve nothing less.”
Given the importance of resources toward achieving better outcomes for historically underserved students, this series explores how well Title I targets funds to school districts and schools with the highest concentrations of poverty.
- In How the Formulas Work, economists Nora Gordon (Georgetown University) and Sarah Reber (Brookings Institution) explain how the four Title I formulas distribute funds and how certain factors within the formulas result in districts receiving different levels of funding.
- Gordon and Reber also explain why the EFIG formula, despite its name, is unlikely to incentivize states to change how much they fund K–12 schools or how they distribute state funding to higher- versus lower-poverty schools.
- In Targeting Funds to High-Poverty Schools and Districts, Rebeca Shackleford, All4Ed’s Director of Federal Government Relations, considers whether Title I funds are adequately and consistently targeted to districts and schools with the highest concentrations of poor children. We found that more than 70% of Title I funds are allocated to school districts with a poverty rate below 30%.
- In How the Formulas Benefit Different Types of Districts, Gordon and Reber simulate what would happen if $10 billion in new Title I funding was allocated solely through any one of the current Title I formulas, instead spread across all four, and reveal that the Concentration Grant would be most effective at targeting funds to high-poverty districts. This is significant because federal law has frozen funding for Concentration Grants since the passage of the No Child Left Behind Act over twenty years ago.
- In Policy Considerations and Recommendations, All4Ed synthesizes the findings across the series to offer policy solutions that would improve how Title I funds are distributed and help the program fulfill its purpose to support students living in concentrations of poverty.
Accompanying is a fact sheet, available in both English and Spanish, that serves as a primer to Title I.
The series was supported through a generous grant from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation and can be found on the All4Ed website at www.all4ed.org/ImproveTitleI.
All4Ed (formerly the Alliance for Excellent Education) is a Washington, DC–based national organization dedicated to advancing policies and practices so all students, especially those from underserved communities and particularly students of color and those from low-income families, graduate from high school prepared to complete postsecondary education and achieve success in a rapidly changing world. all4ed.org