Title Funding to Improve Student Engagement and Professional Learning

Robert-Wayne Harris
Chief Learning Officer (CLO)
News on January 22 2021

Title funding is a great way to provide PD support for teachers and to improve student engagement and performance in either remote, blended, or in-school learning environments.

Title Grants (Entitlement Grants) are federal funding allocations provided to K-12 schools and districts designed to supplement existing funding streams leading to improved academic achievement, particularly among disadvantaged student populations. When utilized effectively, Title Grants can level the educational playing field, enabling disadvantaged students the opportunity to receive a fair, equitable, and high-quality education.

Explore more when you look at the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) – A Comprehensive Guide.

Different title funding allocations

Title Grants such as Title, Part A (Improving the Academic Achievement of Disadvantaged Students); Title II, Part A (Highly Qualified Teachers and Leaders); Title III, Part A (Enhancement and Achievement for Limited English Proficient and Immigrant Students); and Title IV, Part A (Student Support and Academic Enrichment Services) can all benefit educational programs and professional learning that can lead to improved teacher pedagogy, enhanced student engagement, and increased student achievement. Although strict rules and guidelines must be adhered to by the receiving school or district, Title funding streams can support the purchases of instructional resources, professional development, and technology needed to offer a comparable educational experience for all students.

How can title funding be used?

In disadvantaged communities in particular, Title funding can supplement, not supplant, existing state and local funding for educational reform initiatives. For an example, Title funding can be used for the following:

  • Extra instruction in reading and math
  • Special preschool, after-school and summer programs that reinforce the regular school curriculum
  • Teacher, principal, and staff recruitment and professional development
  • English Language Learner (ELL) programs, technology, and professional development
  • Programs to support academic enrichment, STEM, counseling, health and physical education
  • The integration of technology in the classroom

We will explore some of these fundable programs in subsequent blogs.

Use title funding for new and innovative strategies

If you are exploring new and innovative strategies to enhance the learning environments, but have yet to identify an adequate funding stream, then Title funding may be the answer. When working as a Superintendent of Schools, Title funding was used for programs like:

  • Saturday learning academies
  • Summer enrichment programs
  • STEM Programs and Technology Purchases to Enhance Learning among disadvantaged students
  • Teacher and school leader professional development/learning
  • Hiring additional reading and math specialists

Now, as the Chief Learning Officer at Teq, we’ve supported innovative Title-funded programs with:

  • Teq onsite or virtual professional development and learning workshops
  • Teq onsite or virtual mentoring and coaching professional development sessions
  • Teq online professional development platform, OTIS for educators
  • STEM initiatives and interactive classroom technology
  • Student enrichment and project-based learning (PBL) programs and classroom instructional resources

Conclusion

Title funding is an important part of developing innovative programs in your school or district. Creating a plan about how funding is used each year will put you on the path to building strong, sustainable programs that have a real impact on learning. As always, it is important to make sure that you are supporting these programs with effective professional development, as teachers and leaders will be responsible for implementing these programs in their schools and in classrooms with their students.

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