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K-12 education: Education needs to improve oversight of its 21st Century program

Education's 21st Century program--funded about $1 billion annually since 2002--supports a broad array of activities outside the school day to improve student outcomes in high-poverty or low-performing K-12 schools. A statement accompanying the Consolidated and Further Continuing Appropriations Act of 2015 included a provision for GAO to review Education programs outside the regular school day. GAO examined (1) how 21st Century funds are awarded and used, (2) what is known about the effectiveness of these programs, (3) how Education manages and uses program data to inform decision making, and (4) Education's technical assistance for evaluating and sustaining programs. GAO conducted a 50-state survey of program officials, obtaining a 100 percent response rate. GAO also reviewed selected state program evaluations and academic studies on student outcomes, and observed program activities and interviewed officials in four states representing a range of grant size and location. (author abstract)
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Fact Sheets & Briefs
United States

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