Delaware Announces $60 Million Funding Initiative for Disadvanta - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Delaware Announces $60 Million Funding Initiative for Disadvantaged Students

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DOVER, Del.- The Opportunity Funding initiative will be providing Delaware school districts with funding according to their needs.

"We're looking at a per-pupil amount. For example, we might consider $500 per EL students and we might consider $300 per low-income student," explains Susan Bunting, Delaware Education Secretary. " The use of this funding will be up to the districts. It could be use for a direct English language learning teacher, or for social workers, or maybe after school programs," she adds.

According to a press release, "The program initially will be funded with a mix of ongoing and one-time funding in Governor Carney’s Fiscal Year 2020 budget proposal." The funds will be distributed in the next three years, in an estimated $20 million per year.

For some students, like senior Valentina Maza, this funding means a better opportunity to achieve her dreams.

"We needed to break through obstacles like the language barrier and the need for emotional support many immigrants like me have," she says. "This funding will help us."

Secretary Bunting says they will be working closely with the districts to ensure that the funds will directly benefit low-income and English learner students.

Delaware is one, out of only four states in the country, that does not offer additional resources for low-income and English learner students. For this reason, some community advocates hope this funding can lead to a permanent solution to serve those students in need.

“Delaware's low-income and English Learner students deserve equitable access to resources that meet their needs and support their success in our schools," said DelawareCAN Executive Director Atnre Alleyne in a statement.

"As we celebrate the potential of today's announcement, let’s not lose sight of the bigger picture—that Delaware needs to reform its 80-year-old funding formula so low-income and English Learner students can count on equitable resources for years to come, not just the next three years," he adds.

The funding will start getting to the state's 19 school districts for the 2019-2020 school year.

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