This is Dennis from Burbio. Below is our weekly update. Feel free to share.
Disruptions stayed at their reduced levels of the previous week. We revisit the mask mandate figures for the Top 500 as states announce policy shifts, and re-issue a state-level Mask Policy Tracker map. We also profile tutoring programs being introduced as part of ESSER III planned spending. More below.
School disruptions have dropped to levels of mid-September, with the number of schools affected by at least one day of disruption last week down to 354, a drop of 34% from the previous week's level of 540. Daily disruptions showed a similar decline and that chart can be found on our School Opening Tracker.
As has been widely reported, a number of states announced a timeline for the elimination of school mask mandates this week. A few things to note:
In the above seven states, districts will still have the ability to maintain a mandate. For example,Nevada's FAQ reads "Yes, counties, cities, school districts, businesses and other settings are still allowed to require masks. This directive lifts the state-wide mask requirement, but it does not prevent an entity to require masks in settings they have jurisdiction in or own."
Currently 286 of the country's largest 500 districts (57.2%) require masks in schools, while another 21 (4.2%) require some segment of the school population to wear masks. Details can be found on Burbio's Mask Policy Tracker.
In addition to tracking mask policies at the Top 500 US school districts, Burbio is re-introducing our state-level map which can be found on ourMask Policy Tracker below the Top 500 analysis. Light green states are states where districts have flexibility, purple states have announced a change in policy that hasn't taken effect, dark blue states still have a mask mandate. In orange states, there are varying levels of litigation ongoing; in all orange states except Illinois, state level initiatives to ban in-school mask mandates are being contested in ongoing court cases. In Illinois it is the opposite - the state's requirement of masks in schools is being contested.
To date Burbio has compiled details on over $64 billion of plannedESSER IIIspending from over 2,700 districts representing over 57% of US K-12 students. This week we wanted to highlight the tutoring category, which appears in over 30% of ESSER III plans and takes a variety of forms. The figure in parenthesis is the size of the district's overall ESSER III allocation:
In Tennessee the state guidance refers to "High Dosage/Low Ratio" tutoring for districts, which refers to the frequency of instruction and the number of students per tutor. In Shelby County, TN ($503MM) stakeholder input showed 42% of respondents citing "academic needs" as the top issue facing students - the next category was just 15% - and the district will be spending $42MM on "High Dosage, Low Ratio Tutoring. . . . Students below a specified academic threshold will receive instructional support in English language arts and/or math. . . a 1:10 tutor student ratio for before and after school tutoring at grades K-12, and a 1:4 tutor student ratio for tutoring occurring during the day at grades K-8."
Vallejo City, CA school district ($29.3MM) is planning to spend $4.5 MM to "engage vendors through June 2024 to provide students most impacted by lost instructional time with high dosage tutoring during and/or after the regular instructional day in the areas of English Language Arts, mathematics, and English Language Development. This action will supplement efforts in the referenced plans to provide targeted students with services through June 2024."
Lisa Academy, AR ($7.3MM) will be spending $1MM on "High-dosage tutoring provided consistently by well-trained tutors or educators at least three days per week for at least 30 minutes at a time in groups of five or fewer students."
Patchogue-Medford, NY ($16MM) is spending on "high dosage" tutoring programs in the elementary school for reading and math during the school day, and at the high school for credit recovery and tutoring programs that will be offered contiguous to the school day, in the evenings, and on weekends.
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