Census Data may Cost Dysart Ariz. District Funds

Courtney Williams's picture
Monday, February 6, 2012

The Dysart Unified School District says that it could lose tens of thousands of dollars in federal funds because the Arizona Department of Education distributes that money based on "outdated" U.S. census data.

After two failed tries, Arizona won a coveted Race to the Top federal education grant in December and will use the $25 million to prepare for new K-12 learning standards and improve the state's education-data system.

Half the money will go to public schools to help them replace the state's learning standards with tougher national learning goals, called common core learning standards. This is the portion of money -- intended primarily for teacher training -- that Dysart is questioning.

Dysart Superintendent Gail Pletnick sent a letter Jan. 27 to Arizona schools chief John Huppenthal, pleading for the state Education Department to re-evaluate the formula it plans to use to allocate federal grant money it won in December.

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