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"Race to the Top" and the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA)

Recent Updates

January 11 deadline for SFSF Phase II funds The application for the final $11.5 billion of State Fiscal Stabilization Funds—all intended for education—is due on January 11. Final requirements and the application were released on November 12.

January 19 deadline for RTTT Phase I application The race is on! The final requirements and application for RTTT were released in November. The application deadline is January 19 for Phase I and June 1 for Phase 2. States may wait until Phase 2 to apply or apply again if they don’t receive a grant in Phase 1.

February 8 deadline for Title I School Improvement Grants (SIG), a $3.5 billion program separate from Race to the Top, targets persistently low-achieving schools. The final SIG requirements for this program were released on December 3. The deadline for the state to apply for SIG funds is February 8, 2010.

The proposed regulations for the ARRA Investing in Innovation (i3), which provides $650 million to nonprofits and LEAs, have been issued; public comments are due on November 9.

Race to the Top Fund: Proposed regulations published July 29, 2009. NEA’s comments praise the administration’s commitment to improving public education, but express concern about using student test scores to evaluate teachers and overly emphasizing charter schools as a tool for reform. We urge the administration to focus instead on proven, research-based strategies and addressing inequities among school districts — and schools within districts.

Title I, Part A and IDEA funding: Proposed regulations published August 17, 2009.

Title 1 School Improvement Grants: Notice for public comment issued August 26, 2009.

Information for the education community

The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA) – also known as the $787 billion “economic stimulus package” – includes more than $130 billion for U.S. Department of Education programs and billions more for community- and job-related programs administered by other parts of the U.S. government.

How and when will that money be distributed? Can you, your school, or your community get some? What can you do to ensure the money is spent wisely? Find out more below.

Administered by the U.S. Department of Education

Competitive Grants

• Race to the Top Fund: $4.35 billion for education reform; only states can apply.
• Investing in Innovation Fund: $650 million for education reform; local educational agencies and nonprofits can apply.
• Statewide Longitudinal Data Systems: $250 million to develop high-quality data systems; only states can apply.
• Teacher Incentive Fund: $200 million for school compensation systems; districts, states, and nonprofits can apply.
• Title I School Improvement Grants: $3.5 billion goes to states, which they in turn distribute as grants to local educational agencies.
• State Educational Technology Grants: $650 million goes to states, which they in turn distribute as grants to local educational agencies.

Targeted Funding

• College students: Pell Grants, loans, tuition tax credits, and scholarships
• English-language learners
• Homeless youth
• Impact aid
• Individuals with disabilities: click here and here and here for information about vocational rehabilitation and independent living programs
• Pre-K/early childhood
• School modernization and construction 
• Special education: IDEA Part B and IDEA Part C
• State Fiscal Stabilization Fund
• Teacher quality enhancement grants
• Title I:  Part A funds and local educational agency allocations

Administered by Other U.S. Government Departments and Agencies

• Commerce: jobs and economic development
• Energy
• Health and Human Services: health care, children, and community services
• Housing and Urban Development
• Justice: public safety
• Labor: unemployment benefits and job training
• National Endowment for the Arts
• Overview



What’s happening in your state or school district with the ARRA money? Are the public schools getting the funds intended for them? Click "Reply" to share your news and views with educators around the country on our discussion board.

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