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Senator Spilka Announces over $3 Million in Additional Education Funds for MetroWest

August 25, 2010

Senator Karen Spilka (D-Ashland) announced today that six MetroWest towns in her district will receive $3,111,517 in additional education funding thanks to the federal Education Jobs Fund signed into law by President Obama on August 10, 2010.

Under the allocation of funding, which is designed to preserve teaching jobs, Ashland will receive $253,982, Franklin will receive $1,295,418, Holliston will receive $343,005, Hopkinton will receive $315,671, Medway will receive $484,561 and Natick will receive $418,880.   Framingham also received a $716,010 increase in Chapter 70 funding earlier this year.

“This additional federal money allows Chapter 70 education aid to be fully funded in every community in the state,” stated Senator Spilka.  “This announcement, coming on the heels of $250 million in Race to the Top funds, demonstrates how, by working together, we can translate the Commonwealth’s single-minded commitment to education into results.”

The $204 million from the federal Education Jobs Fund to school districts across the Commonwealth brings state support for public schools to its highest level in history.  A combination of state and federal dollars totaling $4.07 billion will ensure all school districts receive more state aid – at least $25 per student – than they did last year.  The new funding will support an estimated 2,700 teaching positions across the state.

The Education Jobs Fund provides $26 billion nationwide to preserve jobs for teachers and other school-based employees.  The Commonwealth’s $204 million appropriation will be directly distributed to school districts through the state’s education funding formula and combined with state and federal funds to ensure that every school district across the state meets its foundation level budget for the 2010-2011 school year.  With this new infusion of federal funding, Chapter 70 will be fully funded without using nearly $60 million in American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) funds available for general government purposes.

This year the state will commit nearly $3.85 billion in Chapter 70 education funds to cities and towns.  By combining these state dollars with $204 million in Education Jobs Funds and $20.7 million in existing ARRA funds, the state will meet its commitment to helping every school district reach foundation level spending targets in Fiscal Year 2011.

Yesterday, Massachusetts received $250 million from the federal Race to the Top program.  These funds will be used to implement landmark education reforms, including providing new and more immediate opportunities to turn around underperforming schools and close achievement gaps, expand access to successful charter schools and authorize new Innovation Schools to provide greater choice for students and their families.

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