School boards urge Duncan for more flexibility on School Improvement Grants

While the ever-expanding role of the U.S. Department of Education in state and local level matters remains a concern, the National School Boards Association (NSBA) acknowledges benefits of the proposed revisions to the School Improvement Grants (SIG) program, extending the grant period from three to five years, and allowing local education agencies to use SIG funds to implement, in one or more SIG eligible schools, a state-determined intervention model.

In a letter to U.S.Secretary of Education Arne Duncan, NSBA voices its support of the extension and the greater flexibility and efficiencies that the proposed revisions will provide, but points out where the proposed requirements are prescriptive and urges the Secretary to establish less rigid requirements.

NSBA's letter states, "NSBA remains concerned over the expanding role of the U.S. Department of Education in matters that should best be addressed at the state and local levels. While well-intended, the Department has established a pattern of expanding its reach through regulations, rules and grant conditions beyond the specific requirements set forth by the No Child Left Behind Act."

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