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Back to November Ed Reporter

Education Reporter
NUMBER 214 THE NEWSPAPER OF EDUCATION RIGHTS NOVEMBER 2003

Title I Spending Fails to Improve Student Test Scores 
Closing the Education Achievement Gap:  Is Title I Working? WASHINGTON, DC - A new study concludes that federal spending on education under Title I has failed to produce any significant increase in test scores or to narrow achievement gaps between the scores of low- and high-income students and schools.

The American Enterprise Institute study, entitled "Closing the Education Achievement Gap: Is Title I Working?" examines the largest federal program of financial aid to schools, Title I of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965, which was intended to improve the academic performance of children in low-income schools. The program was recently reauthorized as part of the No Child Left Behind Act.

Released in May 2003, the study compared the scores of individual Title I students with the scores of similar students who do not receive Title I benefits. The researchers found no evidence that Title I improves the recipients' academic performance.

"The plain policy implications of our findings (and those from earlier evaluations) is that Title I should be shut down," say authors Marvin H. Kosters and Brent D. Mast. They note that the No Child Left Behind Act contains provisions to increase the accountability of Title I spending, but suggest that earmarking some of the funds to increase parental choice of schools would be a better use of the money.

The American Enterprise Institute sponsors original research on a variety of issues, including domestic political and social issues.


 
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