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Friday Churn: Grant apps pour in

What’s churning:

The Capital Construction Assistance Board has received $366.4 million in 2011 applications for the Building Excellent Schools Today program.

The board got an initial look at the applications during a meeting earlier this week but won’t make recommendations until June, after the applications are analyzed by staff. The State Board of Education has the final say on the annual grants, usually at its August meeting.

Districts can apply for direct cash grants, which usually are for smaller renovation or safety projects, and the larger lease-purchase awards, which are combinations of state and local money that are used for new schools and extensive renovations and paid off over several years.

See the news release, including a list of applicants, and go here for more information about the program. For information on last year’s awards, see this EdNews story.

In case you missed it, the Colorado Education Association, the Colorado Association of School Executives and the Colorado Association of School Boards are calling attention to a new report that looks at how much schools need to meet the state’s standards and requirements. The report was prepared for Children’s Voices, the non-profit law firm behind the financial adequacy lawsuit Lobato v. State of Colorado, by Augenblick, Palaich and Associates, Inc.

“This report shows a major disparity between the inadequate level of our state funding and the realities we face in Colorado’s schools and classrooms,” said Colorado Springs District 11 Deputy Superintendent Glenn Gustafson, who’s also CASE president. “Clearly, we have a very long way to go before our funding can be considered enough to begin to achieve the goals laid out for public schools.”

According to the press release, “CEA, CASE and CASB look forward to presenting the report’s findings when the Adequacy Lawsuit (Lobato) goes before a Denver district court in August, and we are hopeful for a settlement that recognizes Colorado’s need to restructure public K-12 funding that truly promotes learning and achievement opportunity for all students.”

Read the report, “Costing Out the Resources Needed to Meet Colorado Education Standards and Requirements.”

What’s on tap:

The State Council for Educator Effectiveness is scheduled to meet from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Colorado Children’s Campaign, 1580 Lincoln St. Agenda

Good reads from elsewhere:

Not so fast: A Teach for America alum argues that teachers alone cannot be expected to fix society’s ills. The Hechinger Report.

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