Stimulus funds saved K-12 jobs, but states slow

The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act showed promise to assist education, but some of its results have yet to be realized, the Huffington Post reports. While education stimulus funds largely saved or created jobs in public education, ongoing state budget deficits have slowed the implementation of reforms tied to federal stimulus money, according to a Wednesday report by the Center on Education Policy. Still, federal support blunted the recession’s effects on K-12 education.

“Although many districts still had to eliminate teaching and other key staff positions, our research indicates that the situation would have been worse without the stimulus funds,” CEP Executive Director Maria Ferguson said in a statement.

The ARRA, passed February 13, 2009, funneled more than $800 billion dollars into investments in infrastructure, health, energy and education, among others, to save and create jobs, cultivate economic activity and increase accountability in government spending……Read More

Top 10 ed-tech stories of 2009: No. 4

Stimulus funds are flowing to educational technology programs.
Stimulus funds are flowing to educational technology programs.

The federal stimulus package approved by Congress in February included $650 million designated specifically for education technology. That doesn’t include billions more for other programs, such as Title I and the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), which could be used for school technology as well. All told, nearly $106 billion in stimulus dollars went to education.

The money came at a good time for schools, many of which had cut ed-tech spending as the economy tanked. School leaders were encouraged to use the stimulus funding to make one-time investments that could have lasting effects, such as using IDEA money to buy assistive technology (AT) devices for students, training students and staff members to use AT devices, and improving their data collection and reporting abilities.

The infusion of more federal money for education technology was welcomed by ed-tech advocacy groups, which had seen annual funding for the Enhancing Education Through Technology (EETT) program, the largest federal school technology initiative, dwindle during President Bush’s second term–from a high-water mark of $696 million in the 2004 fiscal year to $267 million in FY 2009.…Read More