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Funding to L.A. magnet school restored

May 21, 2013 by

chump changeL.A. Unified reverses a decision that cost a top-performing campus about $300,000 in anti-poverty funding after parents found evidence of a bureaucratic error.

School district officials have reversed a decision that cost a top-performing Los Angeles campus about $300,000 in funding after parents uncovered evidence that a bureaucratic error led to the loss of funds. Five other schools also are likely to get more dollars as well.

L.A. Unified Supt. John Deasy acknowledged Friday that internal confusion resulted in several schools failing to qualify for federal Title 1 money.

“Services that they had counted on will not be lost,” Deasy told The Times.

The funding loss had engendered a campaign last week by parents at Los Angeles Center for Enriched Studies, which is known by the acronym LACES. They’d learned that their Mid-City campus was being denied anti-poverty funds — even though they were convinced that the school should have qualified.

For weeks, senior officials were adamant that LACES was not entitled to the funding. But an internal communication surfaced late last week that seemed to verify the parents’ version of events.

At that point, Deasy ordered a change in course. He also said Friday that five other schools also were affected.

LACES, a popular magnet school with high test scores, serves grades 6 through 12. It’s “not too big and not too small,” said parent Connie Sommer. “We have a wonderful principal who is so honest and caring and works so hard. And the academics are excellent.”

Parents raise $130,000 to $150,000 annually for such items as a choir director and a leased copier. Last week alone, families collected 1,400 pounds of recycling to generate $540.

But that doesn’t mean there aren’t low-income families who deserve anti-poverty aid, parents said.

These Title 1 funds are intended to compensate for the challenges faced by students in low-income families.

via Funding to L.A. magnet school restored – latimes.com.

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