Last fall, I wrote a story about how many school districts were falling short in their obligation to engage students’ families in deciding how to spend billions of dollars in pandemic relief funds for K-12 schools.

A new review of the country’s 100 largest school districts found more than 1 in 3 still aren’t collecting local feedback in violation of federal law. The review was completed by the Center on Reinventing Public Education and published this week on The 74.

Under the American Rescue Plan, districts are required to engage in “meaningful consultation on spending their recovery dollars.” Surveys, town halls and other platforms are often used to poll families.

Tulsa Public Schools, the state’s largest school district, is soliciting feedback through an online form on its website. Parents can rank the supports they want the district to prioritize to address student learning loss and social and emotional needs. That helps the district decide how to invest.

Schools have until Sept. 2024 to spend the funds, though the U.S. Department of Education recently extended the deadline until spring 2026 if they are encountering “extraordinary circumstances.”

Our reporting last year found that simply posting a link to a survey on a school district website often wasn’t enough, especially in the summer. Is your school district collecting feedback on its American Rescue Plan funds? How do you think they should be spent? I’d love to hear from you via email or DM.

Recommended Reading

  • A program in Utah is training teenagers to become sex educators, so they can teach their peers what they’re not learning in the classroom. [Scientific American]
  • Epic Charter Schools’ board votes to extend superintendent Bart Banfield’s contract by one year. [NonDoc]
  • Educators navigating pandemic-era schooling are stressed and burned out — and are faring worse than other working adults, according to a new survey. [Education Week]

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