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Debunking 7 Myths About Title I Funding

In September 2016, the Department of Education proposed new regulations for ESSA (Every Student Succeeds Act), prompting many education professionals to discuss the importance of Title I funding. In order to shed some light on the complexities of schoolwide Title I programs, The Department of Education followed up its proposed regulations with a Non-Regulatory Guidance document that details some common myths and truths related to Title I funding. You can access the entire document here, and read on for a summary of common Title I myths and facts.

Title I Myths and Facts

Myth: "Title I funds can only be used for reading and math instruction."
Fact: Title I funds can be used for instruction in any subject that a school’s comprehensive needs assessment deems in need of improvement.

Myth: "Title I funds can only be used for remedial instruction."
Fact: Title I funds are to be used on any programs that improve the overall educational program of a school. This can mean directing funds toward tutoring programs for students in advanced placement courses, or accelerated summer school classes.

Myth: "Title I funds can only be used to serve low-income students."
Fact: The primary goal of Title I is to improve a school’s overall academic program for the benefit of all students, regardless of income level. It’s important to note that these overall, schoolwide improvements are structured to improve the educational gains of low-income and at-risk students.

Myth: "If a school does not consolidate funds through a schoolwide program, Title I funds may be used only to provide services in a pull-out setting."
Fact: Even if a school does not want to consolidate Title I funds with other funds, upgrading the school’s whole educational program can best be achieved by consolidating funds. Regardless of whether funds are consolidated, a schoolwide program does not need to use Title I funds to provide services only in a pull-out setting.

Myth: "Title I funds can only be used for instruction."
Fact: Title I funds can be used for any materials and resources that raise overall achievement levels in a schoolwide program, including the achievement levels of low-income and at-risk students as identified in a comprehensive needs assessment. These materials and resources can include classroom technologies, books, supplies, or programs to improve school climate and attendance.

Myth: "Title I funds cannot be used to support pre-schoolers."
Fact: Title I funds can be used for programs that prepare children for success in kindergarten.

Myth: "Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) Part B funds may not be consolidated in a schoolwide program."
Fact: A schoolwide program may consolidate funds received under Part B of IDEA. A school that consolidates funds under Part B may use those funds as long as they comply with other requirements of IDEA’s Part B.

Put Knowledge Into Action

Now that you’re more familiar with how Title I funding can be used for resources that improve academic achievement for all students, you can explore how Learning A-Z’s research-based products can enhance your school’s initiatives.

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