After six months of remote learning, tech for students still a work in progress, limited by funding | Education

The shift to remote learning over a weekend in March meant Manchester had to make sure every student had a computer to use for schoolwork.

Six months later, it’s still a work in progress, said Stephen Cross, the school district’s chief information officer.

At the beginning of 2020, Manchester was a “two-to-one” district — two students to one computer, he said. Cross had replaced thousands of outdated laptops before the pandemic and has purchased thousands more, but some students are still waiting.

“We have 3,100 Chromebooks on order, and we have no idea when we’re going to get those,” he said. 

Some schools had a surplus of Chromebooks, so Cross engineered a way to loan some of those schools’ devices to other schools.

“That’s how we’ve been getting devices into the hands of families, moving things around,” Cross said. “We had to scrounge. It was ‘do whatever we can,’ to

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School funding method used across N.H. isn’t fair to students or taxpayers

Using 10 years of the state’s own data, a team of independent analysts, hired by the Commission to Study School Funding, has stacked up the evidence to prove “something that a lot of us may have felt for a long time,” the commission chairman Rep. David Luneau of Hopkinton said at a recent meeting.

“To see it in writing,” Luneau suggested, brought a “new level of meaning and recognition” to the experts’ key finding: “New Hampshire’s existing school funding system is inequitable from both student and taxpayer perspectives.”

Cities and towns “with higher poverty rates and lower property wealth are doubly penalized,” according to the report, which was prepared by the American Institutes for Research (AIR) and presented to the commission over the past several weeks. School districts with the highest number of economically disadvantaged students spend less, on average, than districts with the fewest needy students. Communities with the

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City Hall: Schools scramble to cover COVID costs after FEMA pulls funding | City Hall

BEWARE THOSE LATE Friday afternoon emails.

Karen DeFrancis, business administrator for the Manchester school district, told school board members last week that she received an email at 4:45 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 11, from the state’s Department of Safety, Homeland Security and Emergency Management notifying school districts they should anticipate getting less money from the federal government than they expected to cover COVID-related expenses this fall.



Paul Feely's City Hall

School districts across the state were planning on reimbursement from the Federal Emergency Management Agency for materials, including PPE, cleaning supplies and acrylic barriers.

That was before FEMA changed course. In a letter to New Hampshire officials, FEMA said schools did not qualify for financial assistance — even during a pandemic — “because the education of children is not an immediate action necessary to protect public health, life, and safety.”

“We were a little surprised by that,” DeFrancis told school board members. “Basically,

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State commission to delve into optimal education funding issues

On the anniversary of its first meeting last year, the Nevada Commission on School Funding will delve into the central question it was tasked with solving: How much should the state spend on each of its K-12 students, and where could that money come from?

The commission charged with studying and making recommendations on the new Nevada school funding formula approved by the Legislature in 2019, has spent its first year discussing the nuts and bolts of the new financial structure and how the mandated weights — categorical funding for certain student groups — will be determined.

Beginning Friday, the group’s next task is to define the amorphous concept of optimal funding for education outlined by Senate Bill 543, including recommendations on what the Legislature could do to get there over time, even as the state reels from the economic downturn caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Is it the best

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SC justices reopen courtroom with school funding lawsuit

Updated

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — Meeting in person for oral arguments for the first time since the start of the coronavirus outbreak, the South Carolina Supreme Court heard arguments Friday over whether Gov. Henry McMaster has the power to direct $32 million in federal pandemic relief funds to private schools.

A central question of the lawsuit filed against the governor and conservative think tank Palmetto Promise Institute in July is whether the funds — the majority of the $48 million in discretionary education dollars granted to McMaster by the federal Department of Education — are considered public money, and how they can be used.


McMaster unveiled the plan for Safe Access to Flexible Education, or SAFE, grants earlier that month at a religious school in Greenville. The governor said the one-time program would cover about 5,000 grants

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Betsy DeVos’ Big Idea: Funding students, rather than systems for school choice

The Big Idea is a series that asks top lawmakers and figures to discuss their moonshot — what’s the one proposal, if politics and polls and even price tag were not an issue, they’d implement to change the country for the better?  

Education Secretary Betsy DeVos has been a longtime champion for school choice, but the coronavirus pandemic that shuttered schools nationwide put her vision to give students more education options into greater focus.

“This period of time with the pandemic is really helping encourage a lot of new thinking about the way we’ve always done things,” DeVos said in an interview with Fox News.

As DeVos and the Trump administration insisted schools reopen this fall for in-person instruction, she also backed school choice funding within the pandemic relief response she says could help students stuck with closed schools find new opportunities.

The $300 billion Senate Republican coronavirus relief proposal

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South Carolina justices reopen courtroom with school funding lawsuit

COLUMBIA, S.C. — Meeting in person for oral arguments for the first time since the start of the coronavirus outbreak, the South Carolina Supreme Court heard arguments Friday over whether Gov. Henry McMaster has the power to direct $32 million in federal pandemic relief funds to private schools.

A central question of the lawsuit filed against the governor and conservative think tank Palmetto Promise Institute in July is whether the funds — the majority of the $48 million in discretionary education dollars granted to McMaster by the federal Department of Education — are considered public money, and how they can be used.

McMaster unveiled the plan for Safe Access to Flexible Education, or SAFE, grants earlier that month at a religious school in Greenville. The governor said the one-time program would cover about 5,000 grants of up to $6,500 for students to attend private schools this academic year and help

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School district provides funding update | Local News Stories

PALMER— Mat-Su Borough School District Superintendent Dr. Randy Trani provided an update on school numbers at the School Board meeting on Wednesday.

Though the district had projected over 19,200 students in schools this year, students are showing up at school in numbers much lower than projections. However, one number is staying the same. During his enrollment report, Trani reported that about 65 percent of MSBSD students are attending schools for in-person instruction, a number which has not changed in the weeks since school opened. A total of 17,836 students are enrolled in MSBSD schools with 11,604 at school, 2,888 participating in at-home learning and 3,344 in correspondence courses.

Only three schools remain in ‘yellow’ status’ in regards to COVID-19 infection. The schools are Meadow Lakes Elementary, Tanaina Elementary and Palmer High School which identified a positive case on Monday and reopened to in-person instruction on Wednesday. Trani also provided a

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a socially distanced way to enjoy Lancaster County high school football

A lot of people have been waiting for some Friday night high school football, but because of COVID-19 restrictions, many fans are not allowed to physically be at the games. 

A night at the drive-ins: a socially distanced way to enjoy Lancaster County high school football

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One local theater decided to get creative.

The event was walk-up only, no vehicles.

Whether they were there for the Blue Streaks or the Explorers, everyone was there for one thing.

“We’re here to watch some football,” Becky Casey, a fan, exclaimed.

Manheim Township had the home field advantage over La Salle College High School. But their fans were not quite on the sidelines.

“I am watching my daughter cheerlead on the side of a building,” Jill Kling, a parent, said. “My daughter is a cheer captain this year and I promised not to miss a game so I’m

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School board candidates talk referendum and achievement gaps – Austin Daily Herald

Editor’s Note: This is the first part of a Q&A featuring Austin School Board candidates on issues facing the school district.

This week are Al Eckmann, Carolyn Dube and Cece Kroc.

1. The school board has given the green light for putting an operating levy referendum on the Nov. 3 ballot. How do you sell the need for the referendum to the public?

Al Eckmann: For the past few years Austin Public Schools has been living on a budget that had a small growth in revenue because of an increasing student enrollment. Currently we have a decreasing number of total students served by approximately 220. The same forecast is predicted for future years.

We are currently last in the Big Nine Conference of operating referendum per student with $800 to a high at Winona of $3,594. And our Unassigned Fund Balance has also been dropping because of declining enrollment. Our

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