Title I Portability

As the 114th Congress works to modernize the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA and also known as the No Child Left Behind Act), measures to extend options for school choice are at the forefront.  The House bill, the “Student Success Act” (H.R. 5), includes school choice provisions for Title I portability that would allow students to transfer to the public school or charter school of their choice within their respective district.

Under the House bill language for Title I portability, Title I grant funding for disadvantaged students would follow the student to his or her newly selected public or charter school.  See Section 1128 in H.R. 5.  The Senate bill, the “Every Child Achieves Act” (S. 1177), that was reported in April by the Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee and passed by the Senate in July, does not include provisions for Title I portability.

As Congress advances ESEA legislation, several concerns have emerged around the provisions for portability, such as the effect on resource allocation among schools.  A second concern is that, as the debate about Title I portability heightens and as the legislation advances in Congress, the provisions could be amended to cover student transfers to non-public schools.  Hence, an expansion of the portability provisions for private schools would constitute a voucher program and divert investments from our public schools, thereby affecting resources such as those for classroom instruction and curriculum, intervention services and extended day learning opportunities. The National School Boards Association (NSBA) supports local community public schools and unconditionally opposes vouchers, tuition tax credits and similar schemes.

Go to top