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ERIC Number: ED540644
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2009-Sep
Pages: 12
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
New Beginnings: Using Federal Title I Funds to Support Local Pre-K Efforts. Federal Policy Series
Gayl, Chrisanne L.; Young, Marci; Patterson, Kathy
Pew Center on the States
High-quality, voluntary pre-kindergarten has emerged as an important policy to improve the nation's education system. Based on strong evidence from rigorous longitudinal research and recent program evaluations, reform-minded principals, superintendents, school board members and other leaders have embraced early education as an effective strategy for reducing the student achievement gap. Pre-k is widely understood as an integral part of each child's learning experience and a crucial foundation for school success. Over the last decade, the movement to expand families' access to pre-k has grown primarily through state and local policy efforts. State pre-k appropriations have increased from $2.9 billion in 2005 to $5.2 billion in 2009; yet as of 2008, less than 30 percent of the nation's three and four year olds were served in publicly funded early learning programs, including pre-k, Head Start and special education. Still, many school districts are hard pressed to find the necessary resources to implement high-quality early education. Although local education agencies (LEAs) have long been able to use federal funding under Title I Part A (hereafter, Title I) of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) for early education, flat funding over the past several years has limited districts' ability to do so. Additionally, research from the Center for Law and Social Policy (CLASP) has discerned that many K-12 administrators are not aware they can spend Title I dollars on early education. Recent actions by Congress and the Obama administration provide potential new federal support for pre-k through the expansion of Title I funding. Together, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA)--also known as the federal stimulus package--fiscal year 2009 appropriations, and the president's fiscal year 2010 budget request provide a means for expanding local pre-k efforts through the use of federal funds. This brief focuses on the use of federal Title I funds by LEAs to support pre-k programs. It summarizes the benefits of employing Title I dollars for this purpose, existing guidance from the U.S. Department of Education and examples of districts that are doing so successfully. In addition, the brief outlines issues for education leaders to consider in their planning and suggests ways to coordinate local initiatives with state pre-k programs. Appended are Websites and publications gathered from national organizations, state education agencies, and other nonprofit organizations that provide guidance for education leaders on developing pre-k programs in their districts. (Contains 1 table and 35 endnotes.)
Pew Center on the States. Available from: Pew Charitable Trusts. 901 E Street NW 10th Floor, Washington, DC 20004. Tel: 202-540-2000; Fax: 202-552-2299; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Early Childhood Education; Preschool Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: Pew Center on the States
Identifiers - Location: Illinois; Maryland; Tennessee
Identifiers - Laws, Policies, & Programs: American Recovery and Reinvestment Act 2009; Elementary and Secondary Education Act Title I