ERIC Number: EJ759521
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2005-Jun-8
Reference Count: N/A
U.S.-Funded Parent Information Centers Questioned on Their Agendas, Efficacy
Davis, Michelle R.
Education Week, v24 n39 p1, 28 Jun 2005
The Greater Educational Opportunities Foundation is using about $2 million in federal grant money to spread a message to Indiana parents: Students in struggling public schools can seek free tutoring, find out about charter schools, or transfer to other public schools. The foundation is also taking part in a small, often overlooked federal program that sets up Parent Information and Resource Centers, or PIRCs, to help educate parents about their rights and options under the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB). The NCLB, the centerpiece of President Bush's education agenda, authorizes and lays out the duties for PIRCs. About 80 such nonprofit centers are operating with federal grant money, with one or more in nearly every state. Critics contend that the PIRC program has become an outlet for the Bush administration's pursuit, on the sly, of an agenda that favors charter schools and private school vouchers. They say that some of the nearly 80 centers received federal grants because their ideological slant on education reflects that of the Bush administration. Samara Yudof, a spokeswoman for the Education Department, said the grant process was extremely competitive. In the last round of PIRC grant awards in 2003, the department received more than 400 applications for 40 grants, she said. And out of 80 PIRCs, only a handful can be said to share the administration's ideological stance, she added.
Descriptors: Federal Aid, Information Centers, Federal Programs, Educational Opportunities, Family Programs, Agenda Setting
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Indiana
Identifiers - Laws, Policies, & Programs: No Child Left Behind Act 2001