oversight

Federal Education Funding: Allocation to State and Local Agencies for 10 Programs

Published by the Government Accountability Office on 1999-09-30.

Below is a raw (and likely hideous) rendition of the original report. (PDF)

                  United States General Accounting Office

GAO               Report to Congressional Requesters




September 1999
                  FEDERAL EDUCATION
                  FUNDING
                  Allocation to State and
                  Local Agencies for 10
                  Programs




GAO/HEHS-99-180
      United States
GAO   General Accounting Office
      Washington, D.C. 20548

      Health, Education, and
      Human Services Division

      B-278482

      September 30, 1999

      The Honorable William F. Goodling
      Chairman, Committee on Education
        and the Workforce
      House of Representatives

      The Honorable Peter Hoekstra
      Chairman, Subcommittee on
        Oversight and Investigations
      Committee on Education and
        the Workforce
      House of Representatives

      The Honorable Michael N. Castle
      Chairman, Subcommittee on Early
        Childhood, Youth and Families
      Committee on Education and
        the Workforce
      House of Representatives

      The Honorable Joseph R. Pitts
      House of Representatives

      The Honorable Lindsey O. Graham
      House of Representatives

      Since the early 1990s, the Congress has appropriated over $30 billion a
      year for preschool, elementary, and secondary education. These funds are
      targeted primarily to specific groups of children—such as those who are
      poor or disabled or have limited English proficiency—to help ensure their
      access to public education and to promote educational excellence
      throughout the nation. The Congress provides some of these funds to the
      Department of Education (Education), which then distributes the funds
      either directly to local agencies or to the states. States in turn distribute
      the funds to local agencies. Education and the states may spend some of
      the program funds for administration and other activities allowed under
      each program’s statute.

      Although the federal investment in elementary and secondary education is
      large, the Congress does not routinely receive information about how
      much federal funding actually reaches students in the classroom. There




      Page 1                                 GAO/HEHS-99-180 Federal Education Funding
B-278482




are concerns that too much federal funding may be spent on
administration and that school personnel are incurring “hidden”
administrative costs as they spend time fulfilling administrative
requirements related to applying for, monitoring, and reporting on federal
funds. But administrative activities are difficult to define across programs
because what is considered administration varies from program to
program. For example, under the Individuals With Disabilities Education
Act (IDEA), technical assistance is considered an administrative activity,
but under the Safe and Drug-Free Schools and Communities program
(called the Safe and Drug-Free Schools program) it is considered
nonadministrative.

In this context, as the Congress prepares to consider reauthorization of
many of the elementary and secondary programs, you asked us to
determine, for 10 major Education programs for fiscal year 1996, (1) the
percentage of federal funding spent at the federal level and the uses of
these funds and (2) the percentage of federal funding spent at the state
level and the uses of these funds. In addition, you asked that we
examine—in a small number of school districts—the amount of time school
personnel spent fulfilling federal administrative requirements for those
programs for which the districts received funds.

To determine the percentage of funds spent1 by federal and state agencies
from the 10 programs and how these funds were used, we surveyed 50
states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico, as well as Education
officials. For this analysis, we examined funds from these programs that
Education distributed directly to the states but not to local-level agencies
(see table 1 for a description of the 10 programs and their authorizing
legislation). To determine how much time school personnel spent fulfilling
administrative requirements, we gathered illustrative information from 9
of the 16,000 school districts nationwide in three states—California,
Maryland, and South Carolina—and surveyed district staff and staff from
selected schools in each of the 9 school districts (see app. I for a more
detailed discussion of our scope and methodology). We judgmentally
selected these 9 school districts to ensure that the districts were of varying
sizes, were located in different parts of the country, and represented a mix
of urban, suburban, and rural districts. We conducted our work between



1
 We asked the Department of Education and the states to report the amounts of program funds they
initially retained to spend on federal-level or state-level activities, respectively. Although states may
later reallocate some portion of the funds to local agencies and other entities to spend, throughout the
report, the term “spent” refers to the funds that Education and the states reported they initially
retained for their expenses.



Page 2                                               GAO/HEHS-99-180 Federal Education Funding
                   B-278482




                   July 1997 and August 1999 in accordance with generally accepted
                   government auditing standards.


                   In fiscal year 1996, Education distributed over 99 percent of the
Results in Brief   appropriations for the 10 programs to the states; the states, in turn,
                   collectively distributed 94 percent of the funds they received to local
                   agencies such as school districts. Of the original appropriations,
                   92 percent was allocated primarily to local agencies. At both the federal
                   and state levels, the funds that were not distributed supported such
                   activities as research and evaluation related to the programs and
                   information dissemination about them. At the state level, the funds, as
                   authorized by law, may be spent on a wider range of activities, such as
                   developing student performance standards and professional development
                   training for teachers.

                   Education spent less than 1 percent of all appropriated program funds,
                   distributing the rest primarily to the states in fiscal year 1996. Only for the
                   School-to-Work program did Education spend more than 1 percent,
                   spending 7 percent of the funds for this program. Education spent the
                   funds on such services as research, evaluation, and information
                   dissemination. For example, Education used $26 million of the
                   School-to-Work program funds for program research and to provide the
                   states with technical assistance to help them plan and implement the
                   program. Education paid for other costs of running the programs, such as
                   the salaries and benefits of staff issuing grants and administering the
                   programs, from an appropriation it receives for overall agency
                   management, and not from funds appropriated for the agency’s programs.
                   In fiscal year 1996, Education received $327 million to administer all of its
                   programs. Education estimates that it spent about $23 million to
                   administer the 10 programs we reviewed.2

                   For 9 of the 10 programs, the states spent an average of from 1 to 17
                   percent of the funding. For the remaining program (Bilingual Education
                   state grants), all the funds we reviewed were intended to be used at the
                   state level. Collectively, states distributed 94 percent of the federal funds
                   they received mainly to local agencies. Excluding the $7.3 billion Title I
                   program (one of the largest elementary and secondary education
                   programs), the overall percentage of funds states allocated to local

                   2
                    $4 million for Title I programs, $5.8 million for IDEA programs, $4.2 million for Perkins programs,
                   $1.3 million each for Eisenhower and Safe and Drug-Free Schools programs, $900,000 for Goals 2000
                   programs, $1 million for School-to-Work programs, $1.1 million for Innovative Education programs,
                   $3.3 million for Bilingual Education programs, and $300,000 for Even Start programs.



                   Page 3                                             GAO/HEHS-99-180 Federal Education Funding
                                                B-278482




                                                agencies by the remaining nine programs was 86 percent. The states, like
                                                Education, spent the funds for activities such as technical assistance and
                                                program evaluation. The states also are authorized to spend the funds for a
                                                wider range of activities, including designing curricula and demonstration
                                                projects. We visited 9 of the nation’s 16,000 school districts and found that
                                                school-level staff spent very little time administering the programs and
                                                that district office staff also generally spent little time administering them.
                                                The time they spent varied by district and by program.


                                                The federal investment in preschool, elementary, and secondary education
Background                                      of more than $30 billion was about 7 percent of all education funding in
                                                academic year 1995-96; state and local contributions were 47 and 46
                                                percent, respectively. As shown in table 1, the fiscal year 1996
                                                appropriations for the 10 programs we reviewed varied widely, from $7.3
                                                billion for the Title I program to $102 million for Even Start. These
                                                amounts reflect the total appropriation for each program, including funds
                                                that Education distributed directly to local education agencies as well as
                                                funds Education distributed to state education agencies or other eligible
                                                recipients.


Table 1: Characteristics of the 10 Department of Education Programs During Fiscal Year 1996, Listed by Funding Amount
                                                                                          Maximum                  Maximumb
                                                                                          percentage states amount states
                                                                                          may spend and        may spend on
                  Authorizing                                 Target         Funding (in specific limits on    administration
Program           legislation            Purpose              population     millions)    administrationa        (in millions)
Improving Basic      Elementary and          To help local              Disadvantaged $7,295           1.5% (including                $73
Programs             Secondary Education     education agencies         students                       1% for
Operated by          Act of 1965, as         and schools improve                                       administration)
Local                amended (ESEA), title   the teaching and
Educational          I, part A               learning of children
Agencies (Title I)                           failing, or most at-risk
Assistance for      IDEA, part B             To assist states in        Children and    2,684c         25%d (including                134
Education of All                             providing free,            youth with                     5% for
Children With                                appropriate public         disabilities                   administration)
Disabilities (IDEA)                          education to all
                                             children with
                                             disabilities
Vocational           Carl D. Perkins         To help states             Secondary       963            14.5% (including                48
Education            Vocational and          improve vocational         students in                    5% for
Assistance to the    Applied Technology      education programs         prevocational                  administration)
States (Perkins)     Education Act, as       and provide special        courses
                     amended, title II       needs populations
                     (moved to title I in    with equal access to
                     1998)                   such programs
                                                                                                                               (continued)


                                                Page 4                                           GAO/HEHS-99-180 Federal Education Funding
                                                B-278482




                                                                                                      Maximum                   Maximumb
                                                                                                      percentage states     amount states
                                                                                                      may spend and         may spend on
                   Authorizing                                         Target          Funding (in    specific limits on    administration
Program            legislation               Purpose                   population      millions)      administrationa         (in millions)
State Grants for   ESEA, title IV, part A,   To support programs       Elementary      441 ($348      For state grants,                 14e
Drug and           subpart 1                 to meet the National      and             million for    9% (including 4%
Violence                                     Education Goal that       secondary       state grants   for administration)
Prevention                                   every school will be      schools,        and $93
Programs (Safe                               free of drugs and         teachers, and   million for
and Drug-Free                                violence by the year      students        governor’s
Schools)                                     2000                                      programs
                                                                                       and other
                                                                                       uses)
State and Local    Goals 2000: Educate       To support                Elementary      340            10% (including 4%                 14
Education          America Act, title III    comprehensive             and                            for administration)
Systemic                                     reform plans at the       secondary
Improvement                                  state, local, and         schools,
(Goals 2000)                                 school levels to          teachers, and
                                             improve the teaching      students
                                             and learning of all
                                             children
School-to-Work    School-to-Work             To establish a            All students,   350            No specific limits                35
Opportunities     Opportunities Act of       national framework        including the                  for development
System            1994, title II             within which all states   disadvantaged,                 grants; for
Development and                              can create statewide      minorities, the                implementation
Implementation                               school-to-work            disabled,                      grants, 30% for 1st
Grants to States                             opportunities systems     those with                     year of grant, 20%
(School-to-Work)f                                                      limited English                for 2nd, and 10%
                                                                       proficiency,                   for subsequent
                                                                       migrants, and                  years (including
                                                                       school                         10% each year for
                                                                       dropouts                       administration)


Dwight D.          ESEA, title II, part B    To provide high-          Teachers and    275            10% (including 5%                 14
Eisenhower                                   quality professional      other school                   for administration)
Professional                                 development               staff
Development                                  activities to teachers,
Program                                      staff, and
(Eisenhower)                                 administration
Innovative         ESEA, title VI            To assist state and       Elementary      275            15% (including                    10
Education                                    local education           and                            3.75% for
Program                                      agencies in the           secondary                      administration)
Strategies                                   reform of elementary      schools,
(Innovative                                  and secondary             teachers, and
Education)                                   education                 students
                                                                                                                               (continued)




                                                Page 5                                        GAO/HEHS-99-180 Federal Education Funding
                                             B-278482




                                                                                                             Maximum                  Maximumb
                                                                                                             percentage states    amount states
                                                                                                             may spend and        may spend on
                   Authorizing                                          Target             Funding (in       specific limits on   administration
Program            legislation            Purpose                       population         millions)         administrationa        (in millions)
Bilingual          ESEA, title VII,       To help ensure that    Children with             128 ($7           For state grants,                    .365h
Educationg         part A                 students with limited  limited English           million for       100% (including
                                          English proficiency    proficiency               state grants      5% for
                                          master English and                               and $121          administration)
                                          develop high levels of                           million for
                                          academic attainment                              localities)
                                          in content areas
Even Start Family ESEA, title I, part B   To help break the             Parents who     102                  5% (including                           5
Literacy Program                          cycle of poverty and          lack basic                           administration)
(Even Start)                              illiteracy by                 education
                                          integrating early             skills; have no
                                          childhood education,          high school
                                          adult literacy or adult       diploma; or
                                          basic education, and          are unable to
                                          parenting into a              speak, read,
                                          unified family literacy       or write the
                                          program                       English
                                                                        language; and
                                                                        their children,
                                                                        aged 0-7

                                             a
                                              Many also may spend more than the percentage listed in this column. Many programs also
                                             provide for a minimum dollar amount. In the case of small states, where their total grant is
                                             relatively small, the maximum percentage amount may be inadequate.
                                             b
                                              The numbers in this column are based on total funding rather than the amounts remaining after
                                             Education has taken any funds for its use.
                                             c
                                              Amount is actually for two separate grant programs under part B of IDEA, one providing special
                                             education and related services to school-aged children and one providing such services to
                                             preschoolers.
                                             d
                                              The law was amended in 1998, changing this to 15 percent (including 5 percent for
                                             administration).
                                             e
                                                 Estimate is based only on the $348 million allocated for state grants.
                                             f
                                              The Departments of Education and Labor jointly administer the School-to-Work program. For
                                             fiscal 1996, $180 million was included in Education’s appropriation and $170 million in Labor’s.
                                             g
                                              Under this program, funding for state-level activities is provided through a separate state grant
                                             program, and other funds are allocated directly to local agencies. We only examined the state
                                             grant portion of these funds.
                                             h
                                                 Estimate is based only on the $7.3 million allocated for state grants.



                                             There is no common definition of “administration” across the 10
                                             programs. For example, ESEA does not contain a general definition of
                                             administrative expenditures that states can use for covered programs.



                                             Page 6                                                 GAO/HEHS-99-180 Federal Education Funding
                        B-278482




                        Further, some individual program statutes describe as nonadministrative
                        activities what other programs consider administrative activities. For
                        example, under the Title I program, developing standards and assessments
                        is considered an administrative activity at the state level, but under the
                        Eisenhower program it is considered a nonadministrative activity.
                        Similarly, under the IDEA program, technical assistance is considered an
                        administrative activity, but under the Safe and Drug-Free Schools program
                        it is considered a nonadministrative activity. Thus, the differences in
                        which activities are considered administrative expenses and the lack of a
                        distinction between administrative and nonadministrative expenses make
                        categorization of expenses difficult.3

                        The Congress has been weighing how to balance accountability and
                        flexibility in education programs.4 In its effort to strike a balance between
                        these sometimes competing goals, the Congress has attempted to reduce
                        state and local reporting requirements while at the same time ensuring
                        that sufficient information exists to hold states and local agencies
                        accountable. Moreover, state and local reporting requirements have not
                        historically been uniform across programs, state program accountability
                        systems vary, and the definitions used to categorize expenses and
                        activities differ across states and programs. All of these factors represent
                        challenges to data collection.


                        Across all 10 programs we reviewed, Education typically spent a small
Education Distributed   portion of the federal funds, distributing over 99 percent of the funds to
Almost All Federal      the states.5 With the funds, Education supported a variety of federal
Program Funds to        activities, including program research and evaluation and information
                        dissemination. However, Education paid for other costs of running the 10
States                  programs, such as the salaries and benefits of the staff issuing the grants
                        and administering the programs, from a separate appropriation it receives
                        for overall agency management.

                        Table 2 shows the amount Education spent from each of the 10 programs’
                        funds. Education spent nothing for the Innovative Education and Perkins

                        3
                         See Department of Education, The Use of Federal Education Funds for Administrative Costs
                        (Washington, D.C.: Department of Education, 1998), which addressed the various ways administration
                        is defined.
                        4
                         See Balancing Flexibility and Accountability: Grant Program Design in Education and Other Areas
                        (GAO/T-GGD/HEHS-98-94, Feb. 11, 1998) and Grant Programs: Design Features Shape Flexibility,
                        Accountability, and Performance Information (GAO/GGD-98-137, June 22, 1998).
                        5
                        Education distributes funds to entities other than the states, but for the programs we reviewed,
                        Education allocated most of the funds to the states.



                        Page 7                                             GAO/HEHS-99-180 Federal Education Funding
                                        B-278482




                                        programs. For the Title I program, one of the largest elementary and
                                        secondary programs that support education for disadvantaged students,
                                        Education spent $3.5 million of the funds, which was less than 1 percent of
                                        the program’s $7.3 billion appropriation. For the School-to-Work program,
                                        which is one of the smaller programs, Education spent the largest
                                        percentage—7 percent of the program’s funds ($26 million)—for technical
                                        assistance and research.

Table 2: Program Funding Spent at the
Federal Level in Fiscal Year 1996                                                                    Funds used by            Percentage of
                                        Program                                                          Education            appropriation
                                        Title I                                                           $3,500,000              Less than 1
                                        IDEA                                                                   50,000             Less than 1
                                        Perkins                                                                      0                     0
                                        Safe and Drug-Free Schools                                            997,000             Less than 1
                                        Goals 2000                                                            226,951             Less than 1
                                        School-to-Work                                                    26,000,000                       7
                                        Eisenhower                                                            735,000             Less than 1
                                        Innovative Education                                                         0                     0
                                        Bilingual Education                                                1,828,445                       1a
                                        Even Start                                                         1,369,350                       1
                                        a
                                         This percentage is based on the total fiscal year 1996 appropriation of $128 million for the
                                        Bilingual Education program.

                                        Source: Department of Education.



                                        Education used program funds for a number of activities, such as
                                        research, program evaluation, information dissemination, and technical
                                        assistance. To illustrate, for three of the programs—Even Start, Bilingual
                                        Education, and School-to-Work—Education used funds for technical
                                        assistance to the states and information dissemination to states, school
                                        districts, and the general public. For Even Start, Eisenhower, Safe and
                                        Drug-Free Schools, Bilingual Education, and School-to-Work, Education
                                        also spent funds on program evaluation and research. For the Title I
                                        program, Education officials reported that the funds supported work by
                                        the Bureau of the Census to develop an updated model to estimate the
                                        number of children aged 5 to 17 living in poverty, as well as an evaluation
                                        of that estimate by the National Academy of Sciences. The poverty
                                        estimates are used to determine states’ Title I formula allocations. For the
                                        Bilingual Education, IDEA, and Goals 2000 programs, Education used a
                                        small percentage of the funds for outside reviewers to assess grant
                                        proposals. For example, of the $128 million appropriated for the Bilingual



                                        Page 8                                              GAO/HEHS-99-180 Federal Education Funding
                         B-278482




                         Education program, Education spent about $300,000 for outside reviewers.
                         Education also used $200,000 of the $340 million appropriated for the
                         Goals 2000 program and $50,000 of the $2.6 billion appropriated for the
                         IDEA program for outside reviewers. Other costs, such as salaries and
                         benefits for Education’s employees involved in issuing grants and
                         administering the program, were funded from a separate appropriation it
                         receives for agency management. In fiscal year 1996, Education received
                         $327 million through this appropriation to administer all the programs
                         under its purview, and it estimates that it spent about $23 million
                         administering the 10 programs we reviewed.


                         States generally passed on to school districts most of the program funds.
The States Distributed   The one exception, in which states spent most of the funds, was the
Most of the Funds to     Bilingual Education program, because Education only allocated to the
Local Agencies           states the funds that were intended for state use (the state grant program).
                         Education allocated directly to the localities the Bilingual funds intended
                         for local use. For the other nine programs, the states on average spent
                         from 1 to 17 percent of the funds. States spent the funds on many of the
                         same activities as Education, such as research and evaluation. States also
                         were authorized to spend funds on a wider range of support activities,
                         such as development of student performance standards, curricula design,
                         professional development training, and development of demonstration
                         projects.

                         States varied from program to program with respect to the percentage of
                         funds they spent themselves and the percentage they distributed to local
                         agencies. Figure 1 shows the average percentage of funds states spent for
                         each of the 10 programs. There was considerable variation in the
                         percentage of a given program’s funds that states distributed to school
                         districts. Overall, 94 percent6 of the federal education funds received by
                         the states for these 10 programs was distributed to local agencies such as
                         school districts. If the $7.3 billion appropriation for the Title I program is
                         excluded, the overall percentage of funds states allocated to local agencies
                         drops to 86 percent. Of the original appropriations for all 10 programs,
                         92 percent was distributed to local agencies.



                         6
                          This is the weighted average of funds distributed to the local level for these programs. This figure is
                         based on funds that states’ education agencies distributed to a range of entities. Thus, although funds
                         were distributed primarily to local education agencies, state education agencies also distributed funds
                         to other entities. These entities include local partnerships; regional and local organizations; nonprofit
                         organizations; programs for single parents, displaced homemakers, and criminal offenders; and other
                         state agencies.



                         Page 9                                               GAO/HEHS-99-180 Federal Education Funding
                                         B-278482




Figure 1: Percentage of Funds Spent by State Education Agencies




                                         In addition, states varied in the percentage of each program’s funds they
                                         spent (see table 3). For example, for the IDEA program, the percentage of
                                         funds that states spent ranged from less than 2 percent in 2 states to
                                         21 percent or more in 16 states. For School-to-Work, the percentage of
                                         funds states spent ranged from about 2 percent in five states to over
                                         25 percent in eight states. Most states spent close to the maximum allowed
                                         by law (see table 1). For example, the Innovative Education program
                                         permits states to spend up to 15 percent of program funds received.
                                         Thirty-eight states (88 percent) used between 11 and 15 percent of this
                                         program’s funds. See appendix II for the percentage of funds each state
                                         spent.




                                         Page 10                              GAO/HEHS-99-180 Federal Education Funding
                                            B-278482




Table 3: Range in Percentage of Funds Spent by State Education Agencies, by Program
                                                             Number of states reportinga
                                  0-2               3-5        6-10           11-15          16-20           21-24             25           Over 25
Program                       percent           percent     percent         percent        percent         percent        percent           percent
Title I                            38                 8             0              0               0              0               0                0
IDEA                                2                 5             4             13               4              6               9               1b
Perkins                             1                 2             6             26               6              1               0                1
Safe and Drug-Free Schools          1                 2           42               0               0              0               0                0
Goals 2000                          3                 0           37               0               0              0               0                0
Eisenhower                          0                 7           37               0               0              0               0               1c
Bilingual Educationd                0                 0             0              0               0              0               0               40
Innovative Education                0                 0             1             38               3              0               0               1e
School-to-Work                      5                 2           10               2               8              2               0               8f
Even Start                          8               35              2              0               0              0               0                0
                                            Note: In addition to a maximum percentage that states may spend and/or use for administration,
                                            many programs provide for a minimum dollar amount as well. As a result, states that benefit from
                                            such a provision may end up spending more than the percentage listed in this table.
                                            a
                                            Numbers are based only on those states that responded to our survey.
                                            b
                                             Puerto Rico’s state education agency is also the local education agency (there is only one
                                            school district in Puerto Rico). Therefore, it is allowed to keep and spend all of the funds.
                                            c
                                             Hawaii’s state education agency is also the local education agency. Therefore, it spent all of the
                                            funds.
                                            d
                                             For this part of the analysis, we only examined the funds Education distributed to the
                                            states—about 5 percent of total program dollars—and all of those funds were intended to be
                                            spent at the state level.
                                            e
                                             Hawaii, where the state’s education agency is also the local education agency, spent 26 percent
                                            of the funds on state-related activities and 74 percent on local-level-related activities.
                                            f
                                             For School-to-Work development grant funds, there are no restrictions on the amount of funds
                                            that states can spend at the state level.



                                            States spent the funds on many of the same activities as Education, such
                                            as research and evaluation and technical assistance. States also spent their
                                            funds on the salaries and benefits of personnel involved in such activities
                                            as compliance monitoring and data collection. Moreover, states are
                                            authorized to spend some of their funds on activities specific to each
                                            program. Following are some examples:

                                        •   Under the Eisenhower program, states may spend funds reviewing and
                                            reforming state requirements for teacher and administrator licensure,
                                            developing performance assessments and peer review procedures for



                                            Page 11                                            GAO/HEHS-99-180 Federal Education Funding
    B-278482




    licensing teachers and administrators, and encouraging teacher
    professional development training.
•   Under the Safe and Drug-Free Schools program, states may spend the
    funds to make cost-effective programs for youth violence and drug abuse
    prevention available to local education agencies, demonstration projects
    in drug and violence prevention, and financial assistance to enhance
    resources available for drug and violence prevention in areas serving large
    numbers of economically disadvantaged children.
•   Under the Goals 2000 program, states may spend their funds supporting
    the development or adoption of state content standards and state student
    performance standards; supporting innovative and proven methods of
    enhancing a teacher’s ability to identify student learning needs; and
    promoting public magnet schools, public charter schools, and other
    mechanisms for increasing choice among public schools.
•   Under the School-to-Work program, states may spend funds identifying or
    establishing appropriate state structures to administer the statewide
    school-to-work system and designing challenging curricula in cooperation
    with representatives of local partnerships.

    Schools and school districts used federal funds for classroom services and
    support services and to meet federal administrative requirements.
    Fulfilling the federal requirements necessitates some commitment of staff
    resources at both the school district and school levels. We reviewed the
    extent to which local staff spent time responding to federal program
    administrative requirements in 9 of the nation’s 16,000 school districts (see
    app. III for detailed information about the time spent on these activities).
    We found that the amount of time district office staff spent administering
    these programs varied by district and by program. Of the 10 programs
    reviewed, school district staff reported more involvement in
    administrative activities related to the Safe and Drug-Free Schools
    program than for other programs. Most district staff had responsibility for
    only one program each. Staff told us that their administrative duties
    included requesting and reviewing grant applications, monitoring how
    programs are implemented, and reporting on programs. About 70 percent
    of personnel in the 15 schools we visited, primarily teachers, did not have
    administrative responsibilities for the 10 programs reviewed. When they
    did, however, the majority of them had administrative responsibilities for
    the Title I program. The amount of time school staff spent administering
    the Title I program was usually a day or less out of the school year for
    each administrative duty assigned them.




    Page 12                               GAO/HEHS-99-180 Federal Education Funding
                  B-278482




                  Education provided technical comments on a draft of this report, which
Agency Comments   we incorporated in the report as appropriate.


                  Copies of this report are being sent to the Honorable Richard W. Riley,
                  Secretary of Education; the Honorable Alexis M. Herman, Secretary of
                  Labor; and interested congressional committees. We will also make copies
                  available to others upon request.

                  If you have questions about this report, please call me on (202) 512-7215.
                  Other contacts and staff acknowledgments are listed in appendix IV.




                  Marnie S. Shaul
                  Associate Director, Education, Workforce,
                    and Income Security Issues




                  Page 13                               GAO/HEHS-99-180 Federal Education Funding
Contents



Letter                                                                                               1


Appendix I                                                                                          16
                        Scope                                                                       16
Scope and               Methodology                                                                 17
Methodology
Appendix II                                                                                         22

Percentage of Federal
Education Program
Funds Spent by State
Education Agencies
Appendix III                                                                                        25
                        District-Level Staff Administrative Responsibilities                        25
Illustrative Examples   School-Level Staff Administrative Responsibilities                          28
From Districts and
Schools
Appendix IV                                                                                         30

GAO Contacts and
Staff
Acknowledgments
Tables                  Table 1: Characteristics of the 10 Department of Education                   4
                          Programs During Fiscal Year 1996, Listed by Funding Amount
                        Table 2: Program Funding Spent at the Federal Level in Fiscal                8
                          Year 1996
                        Table 3: Range in Percentage of Funds Spent by State Education              11
                          Agencies, by Program
                        Table I.1: Programs Reviewed                                                17
                        Table I.2: Number of States Responding to Survey, by Program                18
                        Table I.3: School Districts Reviewed                                        19
                        Table II.1: Range and Median Percentage of Education Program                22
                          Funds Spent by State Education Agencies
                        Table II.2: Percentage of Education Program Funds Spent by                  23
                          State Education Agencies




                        Page 14                               GAO/HEHS-99-180 Federal Education Funding
         Contents




         Table III.1: Number of Programs for Which District Staff                  26
           Members Had Administrative Responsibilities, School Year
           1996-97
         Table III.2: Number of School District Staff Members Reporting            26
           Responsibilities for Application, Monitoring, and/or Reporting
           Activities, by Program, School Year 1996-97
         Table III.3: School District Staff Members Who Reported                   27
           Spending Time on Administrative Activities and Amount of Time
           Spent, by Program, School Year 1996-97
         Table III.4: Number of Programs for Which School-Level Staff              28
           Members Had Administrative Responsibilities, School Year
           1996-97
         Table III.5: Number of School-Level Staff Members Reporting               28
           Responsibilities for Application, Monitoring, or Reporting
           Activities, by Program, School Year 1996-97
         Table III.6: Number of School-Level Staff Who Reported Spending           29
           Time on Administrative Activities and Amount of Time Spent,
           School Year 1996-97


Figure   Figure 1: Percentage of Funds Spent by State Education Agencies           10




         Abbreviations

         ESEA       Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965
         IDEA       Individuals With Disabilities Education Act


         Page 15                             GAO/HEHS-99-180 Federal Education Funding
Appendix I

Scope and Methodology


             This appendix discusses in detail our scope and methodology for
             determining the percentage of federal funds spent at the federal and state
             levels and the uses of funds at each level, as well as the amount of time
             school and district staff spent fulfilling federal administrative
             requirements.


             We collected financial information for fiscal year 1996 from 10 Department
Scope        of Education programs. Six programs were authorized under the
             Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965, as amended (ESEA): title
             I, part A—Title I program; title 1, part B—Even Start; title II—Dwight D.
             Eisenhower Professional Development program; title IV—Safe and
             Drug-Free Schools and Communities; title VI—Innovative Education
             Program Strategies; and title VII—Bilingual Education. We also collected
             funding information for programs under four other acts: the Individuals
             With Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), part B—IDEA program; the Carl D.
             Perkins Vocational and Applied Technology Education Act, as
             amended—Perkins; Goals 2000: Educate America Act, title III—Goals
             2000; and School-to-Work. (See table I.1.) We focused on collecting
             financial information and did not evaluate program effectiveness or
             impact.




             Page 16                               GAO/HEHS-99-180 Federal Education Funding
                               Appendix I
                               Scope and Methodology




Table I.1: Programs Reviewed
                               Act                                         Program
                               ESEA                                        Title I, part A: Improving Basic Programs
                                                                           Operated by Local Educational Agencies

                                                                           Title I, part B: Even Start Family Literacy
                                                                           Programs

                                                                           Title II, part B: Dwight D. Eisenhower
                                                                           Professional Development Program

                                                                           Title IV (also known as the Safe and
                                                                           Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act
                                                                           of 1994), part A, subpart 1: State Grants
                                                                           for Drug and Violence Prevention Programs

                                                                           Title VI: Innovative Education Program
                                                                           Strategies

                                                                           Title VII, part A (also known as the Bilingual
                                                                           Education Act): Bilingual Education
                               Goals 2000: Educate America Act             Title III: State and Local Education
                                                                           Systemic Improvement
                               Carl D. Perkins Vocational and Applied      Title II: Vocational Education Assistance to
                               Technology Education Act, as amended        the States
                               IDEA                                        Part B: Assistance for Education of All
                                                                           Children With Disabilities
                               School-to-Work Opportunities Act of 1994    Title II: School-to-Work Opportunities
                                                                           System Development and Implementation
                                                                           Grants to States



                               To determine the percentage of funds spent at the federal level and
Methodology                    distributed to the states, we asked officials at the Department of
                               Education to provide us with the amount of funds it spent, how these
                               funds were used, and the amount of funds distributed to the states for
                               each program.

                               To obtain information on how much states received, spent, and distributed
                               to local agencies, in November 1998 we surveyed state officials in all 50
                               states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico. The surveys were mailed
                               to officials at the state level—typically, officials in the state Department of
                               Education. For each program, we asked respondents to provide us with
                               the total federal funding their state received in fiscal year 1996, instructing
                               them not to include funds that were carried over from previous years. For
                               two states—Oregon and Pennsylvania—respondents were not able to
                               remove carryover funds from the total. Therefore, we included all funds




                               Page 17                                    GAO/HEHS-99-180 Federal Education Funding
                                   Appendix I
                                   Scope and Methodology




                                   reported by these states as funds received in fiscal year 1996. In addition,
                                   we asked respondents to tell us the total amount of federal funds their
                                   state education agency spent and how much they passed on to the
                                   localities. Response rates are shown in table I.2.

Table I.2: Number of States
Responding to Survey, by Program                                                              Number of
                                                                                                  statesa
                                                                                               receiving Number of           Response
                                                                                                program       states               rate
                                   Program                                                         funds responding           (percent)
                                   Title I                                                              52             46                88
                                   IDEA                                                                 52             44                85
                                   Perkins                                                              52             43                83
                                   Safe and Drug-Free Schools                                           52             45                87
                                   Goals 2000                                                           48b            40                83
                                   School-to-Work                                                       52             37                71
                                   Eisenhower                                                           52             45                87
                                   Innovative Education                                                 52             43                83
                                   Bilingual Education                                                  48             40                83
                                   Even Start                                                           52             45                87
                                   a
                                   Includes the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico.
                                   b
                                    Montana, New Hampshire, and Oklahoma are not included in this total because funds were
                                   allocated directly to the local education agencies. California is also excluded because it reported
                                   that it did not receive funds until the end of fiscal year 1996 because no state plan was in place.



                                   To obtain information about the time district- and school-level staff spent
                                   on activities associated with administering federal programs, we gathered
                                   illustrative information from 9 of the nation’s 16,000 school districts—3
                                   districts each in California, Maryland, and South Carolina. We selected the
                                   states, districts, and schools to be a mix from different sized districts,
                                   parts of the country, types of districts (rural, urban, and suburban), and
                                   types of schools (elementary and secondary). We also ensured that in each
                                   district we gathered information from staff working on many of the 10
                                   programs reviewed.

                                   For each selected school district, we gathered information from officials at
                                   the school level and the district level. In total, we interviewed and/or
                                   surveyed officials in 15 schools within the nine districts to ascertain how
                                   much time they spent fulfilling administrative requirements related to the
                                   10 programs (see table I.3).




                                   Page 18                                            GAO/HEHS-99-180 Federal Education Funding
                                             Appendix I
                                             Scope and Methodology




Table I.3: School Districts Reviewed
                                                                                            Programs reviewed
Place                Type of district   No. of students      No. of teachers   1   2    3     4    5    6     7    8     9   10
California
Ceres                Suburban                     9,458                 408    X   X         X     X    X     X          X
San Diego            Urban                      133,687               6,024    X   X    X    X     X    X     X    X     X    X
Shandon              Rural                             337               20    X   X         X     X    X
Maryland
Baltimore City       Urban                      108,759               6,259    X   X    X    X     X    X     X    X     X    X
Baltimore County     Suburban                   104,073               6,442    X   X    X    X     X    X     X    X          X
Kent                 Rural                        2,898                 179    X   X    X    X     X    X     X          X    X
South Carolina
Abbeville            Rural                        3,821                 262    X   X    X    X     X    X          X
Charleston           Urban                       43,457               2,798    X   X    X    X     X    X     X               X
Dorchester           Suburban                    15,367                 878    X   X    X    X     X    X     X    X          X
                                             Legend
                                             1 = Title I
                                             2 = Eisenhower
                                             3 = IDEA
                                             4 = Perkins
                                             5 = Safe and Drug-Free Schools
                                             6 = Innovative Education
                                             7 = Goals 2000
                                             8 = Even Start
                                             9 = Bilingual Education
                                             10 = School-to-Work



                                             We defined “administrative responsibilities” as engaging in activities
                                             related to applying for, monitoring, or reporting on the use of federal
                                             program funds. Specifically, these activities include the following:

                                         •   Application/planning process activities refer to those related to preparing
                                             an application or plan for submission to the state education agency and/or
                                             federal agencies for federal funds for one or more of the education
                                             programs of interest. Examples include completing an application or
                                             proposal entirely or in part, collaborating with others to complete an
                                             application or proposal, and reviewing school or district grant
                                             applications.
                                         •   Monitoring of federal funds or program activities refer to tracking program
                                             expenditures and activities. Examples include tracking participant
                                             enrollments and overseeing the program budget to ensure compliance
                                             with program requirements and approved plans.




                                             Page 19                                   GAO/HEHS-99-180 Federal Education Funding
                             Appendix I
                             Scope and Methodology




                         •   Reporting of federal funds or program activities refer to reporting program
                             expenditures and/or activities to state and/or federal authorities. Examples
                             include gathering data for federal reports, completing a report on program
                             expenditures and/or activities entirely or in part, and collaborating with
                             others to complete a report on program expenditures and/or activities.

                             We surveyed or interviewed over 1,000 school- and district-level staff, but
                             our school- and district-level information is not generalizable. For
                             practical reasons, we could not interview or survey all school and district
                             staff, but we were able to gather information from the majority of teachers
                             and the principal in each school and the majority of district-level staff.
                             Through interviews or questionnaires, we asked the staff to indicate
                             whether they had administrative responsibilities and, if so, to estimate the
                             amount of time spent on administrative activities.

                             At the school level, we interviewed and surveyed 697 staff. Of these,
                             78 percent were teachers; 10 percent were specialists; and 7 percent were
                             school administrators, such as principals. At the district level, we spoke
                             with 319 officials, including budget and finance officials as well as
                             personnel responsible for program evaluation and compliance. The
                             information from these 9 school districts is illustrative, and, as such, is not
                             necessarily indicative of the nearly 16,000 school districts nationwide.
                             Detailed data from the nine school districts on time spent on
                             administrative activities are in appendix III.


Bilingual Education          The Bilingual Education program has two funding streams. A small
Program Funds Pose           percentage of the funds—approximately 5 percent—is allocated to the
Reporting Challenges         states and is intended to be used at the state level. Conversely, the
                             remaining 95 percent generally bypasses the states and is allocated
                             directly to localities. For the other nine programs we reviewed, funds
                             generally flow through the states and then to the localities. Thus, our state
                             survey only captured the 5 percent of the Bilingual Education funds that
                             the Department of Education allocated to the states. Our local school
                             district review examined the administrative responsibilities associated
                             with the 95 percent of the Bilingual funds that flowed directly to the
                             localities.


Nonsampling Errors and       All surveys are vulnerable to some nonsampling errors, including
Data Imputations             measurement errors caused by respondent misinterpretation of the
                             questions or errors that resulted from a lack of response. These errors may



                             Page 20                                 GAO/HEHS-99-180 Federal Education Funding
Appendix I
Scope and Methodology




affect our survey to some unknown degree. We took several steps to
minimize the effect of these problems. For example, we examined
responses for extreme values and checked the data for errors in logic.
When we could not resolve the questions, we called survey respondents
for clarification. In some cases, respondents had reported numbers
incorrectly; in these cases, we corrected the data. For each program, to
develop our estimate of the percentage of federal funds that was
distributed to the localities, we calculated the percentage distributed by
the states that completed the survey and applied that percentage to the
total amount of federal funds received by states that did not complete the
survey.

We conducted our work between July 1997 and August 1999 in accordance
with generally accepted government auditing standards.




Page 21                              GAO/HEHS-99-180 Federal Education Funding
Appendix II

Percentage of Federal Education Program
Funds Spent by State Education Agencies

                                  The amount of program funds spent by the states for support services
                                  varied from state to state. The range and median for each program are
                                  shown in table II.1. Table II.2 shows the percentage spent from each
                                  program, by state.

Table II.1: Range and Median
Percentage of Education Program                                                                                  Range
Funds Spent by State Education    Program                                                             High            Low         Median
Agencies
                                  Title I (N=46)                                                          4               0                1
                                  IDEA (N=44)                                                            25a              0               13
                                  Perkins (N=43)                                                         31               0               13
                                  Safe and Drug-Free Schools (N=45)                                       9               0                9
                                  Goals 2000 (N=40)                                                      10               0               10
                                  Eisenhower (N=45)                                                      10b              4               10
                                                        c                                                                   d
                                  Bilingual Education (N=40)                                           100               90            100
                                  Innovative Education (N=43)                                            17e             10               15
                                                                                                            f
                                  School-to-Work (N=37)                                                100                0               13
                                  Even Start (N=45)                                                       7               0                5
                                  a
                                   Puerto Rico spent all of its funds, but it is an anomaly because the state is also the local
                                  education agency.
                                  b
                                   Hawaii spent all of its funds, but it is an anomaly because the state is also the local education
                                  agency.
                                  c
                                   Almost all Bilingual Education program funds ($121 million of $128 million) are distributed to
                                  local education agencies directly by the Department of Education. About 5 percent of the funds
                                  go to the states. This table reflects only information on the state grants.
                                  d
                                   Although all of the Bilingual Education funds we looked at are intended to be used at the state
                                  level, two states allocated a portion of their funds to local agencies.
                                  e
                                   Hawaii, where the state education agency is also the local education agency, spent 26 percent
                                  of the funds on state-related activities and 74 percent on local-level-related activities.
                                  f
                                   Several states spent all of their School-to-Work development grant funds for state-level activities,
                                  as permitted by law.




                                  Page 22                                              GAO/HEHS-99-180 Federal Education Funding
                                         Appendix II
                                         Percentage of Federal Education Program
                                         Funds Spent by State Education Agencies




Table II.2: Percentage of Education Program Funds Spent by State Education Agencies
                                                  Safe and
                                                     Drug-                                                                 School-
                              Even                    Free Innovative Bilingual     Goals                                      to-
                   Title I    Start Eisenhower Schools Education Education           2000            IDEA    Perkins         Work
                      a          a            a           a          a             a          a                     a             a
Alabama                                                                                              23.1
                                                                     a
Alaska             3.4        4.6         10.0         9.0                 100.0          10.0       11.4       14.3          20.2
                                                                                   a                     a
Arizona            1.4        3.0          5.0         9.0       15.0                     10.0                  14.5          10.0
                      a          a            a           a          a             a          a          a          a             a
Arkansas
                                                                                              b                                   a
California         1.2        5.0          5.0         9.0       13.6      100.0                       5.0        8.1
                      a          a            a           a          a             a          a          a          a             a
Colorado
Connecticut        1.5        5.0         10.0         9.0       15.0      100.0          10.0       22.7       13.3          19.4
                                                                                                                                  a
Delaware           2.5        5.0         10.0         7.8       15.0      100.0          10.0       24.0       11.6
District of
Columbia             0        0.0          4.2         0.0       15.0      100.0            0.0        0.0      16.2            9.4
Florida            1.5        5.0          8.4         9.0       15.0      100.0          10.0       24.4       31.0            3.5
                                 a                                                                       a                        a
Georgia            1.0                    10.0         9.0       17.0      100.0            9.3                 13.8
Hawaii             3.1        5.0        100.0         9.0       26.1      100.0            8.1      25.0         0.0         20.0
                                              a                      a                                   a                        a
Idaho              2.3        5.0                      9.0                 100.0          10.0                  13.3
Illinois           1.5        6.7         10.0         9.0       14.9      100.0            1.0      21.5         9.6           0.5
                                                                                                                    a             a
Indiana            1.5        5.0          9.8         9.0       15.0      100.0            5.6      13.3
Iowa               1.5        1.0         10.0         9.0       15.0      100.0          10.0       24.9       13.3            6.9
Kansas             1.5        5.0         10.0         9.0       15.0      100.0          10.0       18.4       21.4          23.8
                                                                                   b
Kentucky           1.5        5.0          9.8         9.0       15.0                     10.0       16.3       16.9            7.1
Louisiana          1.5        1.8         10.0         9.0       15.0      100.0          10.0       13.0       13.7          16.5
                                                                     a                        a
Maine              2.1        5.0         10.0         2.8                 100.0                     21.5       13.7            6.0
Maryland           1.5        5.0         10.0         9.0       15.0      100.0          10.0         7.8      18.4            9.1
                                                                                              a
Massachusetts      1.4        5.0         10.0         9.0       15.0      100.0                     12.7         9.3         18.4
                                                                                                                                  a
Michigan           1.0        5.0         10.0         9.0       15.0      100.0          10.0       12.5         4.9
Minnesota          1.0        5.0          5.0         9.0       15.0      100.0          10.0       17.2       13.3          21.4
Mississippi        1.5        0.0         10.0         9.0       15.0      100.0            8.0      15.0       13.5         100.0
Missouri           1.6        0.0         10.0         9.0       16.5      100.0          10.0         3.6      17.4          19.5
                                                                                              b
Montana            2.3        5.0         10.0         9.0       15.0      100.0                     10.8         8.4         39.8
                      a          a            a           a          a             a          a          a          a             a
Nebraska
Nevada             2.9        5.0          7.5         9.0       13.7      100.0          10.0         5.0      13.7          28.1
                                                                                              b
New Hampshire      3.7        1.9         10.0         9.0       15.0      100.0                     25.0       17.9          20.0
New Jersey         1.5        5.0         10.0         6.0       15.0      100.0          10.0       12.1       17.8            8.6
                                                                                                                    a             a
New Mexico         1.5        5.3         10.0         7.9       15.0      100.0          10.0         5.1
New York           0.9        4.4          5.0         4.8       15.0      100.0          10.0       25.0       13.4            1.4
North Carolina     1.5        5.0         10.0         9.0       10.0      100.0          10.0         3.6        4.9           0.0
                                                                                                                        (continued)


                                         Page 23                                       GAO/HEHS-99-180 Federal Education Funding
                                        Appendix II
                                        Percentage of Federal Education Program
                                        Funds Spent by State Education Agencies




                                                     Safe and
                                                        Drug-                                                                   School-
                           Even                          Free Innovative Bilingual              Goals                               to-
                 Title I   Start   Eisenhower        Schools Education Education                 2000       IDEA    Perkins       Work
North Dakota        3.5      5.0              5.0          9.0         15.0        100.0         10.0       10.9         10.7     100.0
                                                               a                          a
Ohio                1.5      4.6              8.3                      15.0                      10.0       11.5         13.5      12.8
                                                                                                     b                                a
Oklahoma            1.5      0.0            10.0           9.0         15.0        100.0                    11.7         13.5
                                                                                                                c
Oregon              1.5      5.0            10.0           9.0         15.0        100.0         10.0         25         13.5      10.0
                                                                                          b                     c           a
Pennsylvania        1.5      5.0              6.4          9.0         15.0                        9.0        25                    2.0
Puerto Rico         1.0      5.0              7.6          8.8         16.4        100.0         10.0      100.0          6.0     100.0
                       a       a                 a             a            a             b          a          a           a         a
Rhode Island
South Carolina      1.5      5.9              9.2          9.0         15.0        100.0         10.0         5.7        13.3      31.5
                                                                                                                                      a
South Dakota        3.1      5.0              5.0          9.0         15.0        100.0           7.6      13.7         14.1
Tennessee           1.5      5.0            10.0           9.0         15.0        100.0         10.0       20.0         13.5      30.0
                                                                                                                                      a
Texas               1.5      5.0            10.0           9.0         15.0        100.0         10.0       25.0         13.4
Utah                1.8      5.0            10.0           9.0         15.0          91.9          8.1        0.0        13.5       8.0
                       a       a                 a             a            a             a          a          a           a
Vermont                                                                                                                             3.3
                                                                                          b
Virginia            1.0      5.0            10.0           9.0         15.0                        0.0        9.2        11.5      11.1
Washington          1.5      3.6            10.0           9.0         12.6        100.0         10.0       12.5         11.6       2.1
                                                                                          b
West Virginia       1.3      5.0              9.6          9.0         15.0                      10.0       25.0         13.5      20.0
Wisconsin           1.5      5.0            10.0           9.0         15.0        100.0         10.0       25.0         15.1       6.7
Wyoming             3.8      0.9              6.6          9.0         12.1          90.3        10.1       10.1          6.5     100.0
Percentage
spent
nationwide          1.4      4.5              8.8          8.5         14.8          99.7          8.7      16.8         12.4      10.4
Median              1.5      5.0            10.0           9.0         15.0        100.0         10.0       13.5         13.5      12.8

                                        a
                                        State did not respond to our survey for this program.
                                        b
                                            State received no funding for this program.
                                        c
                                        In Oregon and Pennsylvania, officials were unable to separate carryover funds.




                                        Page 24                                               GAO/HEHS-99-180 Federal Education Funding
Appendix III

Illustrative Examples From Districts and
Schools

                           This appendix contains information from interviews with and surveys of
                           319 school district staff and 697 school-level staff in the nine districts we
                           visited. We asked them to tell us about their involvement in administering
                           the 10 programs reviewed in school year 1996-97. Specifically, we asked
                           them whether they had application, monitoring, and/or reporting
                           administrative duties. The tables in this appendix reflect only those staff
                           who indicated that they had administrative duties—210 district-level staff
                           and 201 school-level staff, 66 and 29 percent, respectively, of those we
                           interviewed or surveyed.

                           By administration, we mean those activities related to applying for,
                           monitoring, or reporting on federal funds (see app. I).

                           Tables III.1 through III.3 provide information on district-level staff
                           involvement in the administration of the 10 programs reviewed in
                           academic year 1996-97:

                       •   the number of programs for which each district staff member was
                           responsible (table III.1);
                       •   the number of district staff members reporting responsibilities for
                           application, monitoring, and/or reporting administrative activities (table
                           III.2); and
                       •   the amount of time district staff members reported they spent in fulfilling
                           administrative requirements for each program (table III.3).

                           Tables III.4 through III.6 provide information on school-level staff
                           involvement in the 10 programs reviewed in school year 1996-97:

                       •   the number of programs for which each school-level staff member was
                           responsible (table III.4);
                       •   the number of school staff members reporting responsibilities for
                           application, monitoring, and/or reporting administrative activities (table
                           III.5); and
                       •   the amount of time school staff members reported spending fulfilling
                           administrative requirements for each program (table III.6).


                           Of the district staff who had administrative responsibilities, two-thirds
District-Level Staff       reported administrative responsibilities for only 1 of the 10 programs
Administrative             reviewed; few staff had responsibility for more than 3 programs. (See table
Responsibilities           III.1.)




                           Page 25                                GAO/HEHS-99-180 Federal Education Funding
                                         Appendix III
                                         Illustrative Examples From Districts and
                                         Schools




Table III.1: Number of Programs for
Which District Staff Members Had                                              Number of district staff members who reported having
Administrative Responsibilities,         Number of programs                                               responsibility for program
School Year 1996-97                      1                                                                                                       137
                                         2                                                                                                       44
                                         3                                                                                                       10
                                         4                                                                                                        4
                                         5                                                                                                        2
                                         6                                                                                                        7
                                         7                                                                                                        3
                                         8                                                                                                        0
                                         9                                                                                                        1
                                         10                                                                                                       2

                                         The largest number of district staff reported having application,
                                         monitoring, or reporting responsibilities for the Safe and Drug-Free
                                         Schools program, followed by the Title I program. (See table III.2.)

Table III.2: Number of School District
Staff Members Reporting                                                                                 Number of staff who reported
Responsibilities for Application,                                                                      having responsibility for activitya
Monitoring, and/or Reporting             Program                                                    Application Monitoring            Reporting
Activities, by Program, School Year
                                         Safe and Drug-Free Schools                                             63              63               61
1996-97
                                         Title I                                                                40              44               33
                                         Eisenhower                                                             25              30               29
                                         Perkins                                                                28              26               26
                                         IDEA                                                                    8              22               20
                                         Goals 2000                                                             20              23               19
                                         Innovative Education                                                   18              20               18
                                         School-to-Work                                                         11              12               11
                                         Even Start                                                             10              12               11
                                         Bilingual Education                                                     4               2                3
                                         a
                                         District staff could report having responsibility for one or more types of administrative activities.



                                         No patterns emerged with respect to the amount of time district staff
                                         reported spending on different types of administrative duties or the
                                         amount of time they reported spending in performing administrative
                                         activities for a given program. (See table III.3.)




                                         Page 26                                              GAO/HEHS-99-180 Federal Education Funding
                                             Appendix III
                                             Illustrative Examples From Districts and
                                             Schools




Table III.3: School District Staff Members Who Reported Spending Time on Administrative Activities and Amount of Time
Spent, by Program, School Year 1996-97
Hours per school year
                              Application                              Monitoring                             Reporting
                   8 hours         9 to 40    40 hours      8 hours         9 to 40     40 hours   8 hours        9 to 40     40 hours
Program             or less         hours      or more       or less         hours       or more    or less        hours       or more
Bilingual
Education                 3             1              0          0                 2         0          2                1         0
Even Start                1             3              6          1                 6         5          5                2         4
School-to-Work            4             6              1          1                 5         6          6                4         1
IDEA                      4             3              1          4                 5        13          7                8         5
Innovative
Education                 9             8              1          7              10           3         11                6         1
Eisenhower                9            11              5          9              11          10         12            12            5
Perkins                 10             16              2          9                 8         9         11            12            3
Goals 2000                5            12              3          7                 9         7         13                4         2
Safe and
Drug-Free
Schools                 29             23              11        20              25          18         35            19            7
Title I                   4            12              24         7                 8        29          7            12           14




                                             Page 27                                       GAO/HEHS-99-180 Federal Education Funding
                                          Appendix III
                                          Illustrative Examples From Districts and
                                          Schools




                                          Of the school-level staff who had administrative responsibilities, about
School-Level Staff                        70 percent reported having administrative responsibilities for 1 of the 10
Administrative                            programs reviewed; few school-level staff had responsibility for more than
Responsibilities                          3 programs. (See table III.4.)

Table III.4: Number of Programs for
Which School-Level Staff Members                                                Number of school-level staff reporting administrative
Had Administrative Responsibilities,      Number of programs                                                           responsibility
School Year 1996-97                       1                                                                                                144
                                          2                                                                                                33
                                          3                                                                                                14
                                          4                                                                                                 7
                                          5                                                                                                 0
                                          6                                                                                                 1
                                          7                                                                                                 1
                                          8                                                                                                 0
                                          9                                                                                                 0
                                          10                                                                                                0

                                          The largest number of school-level staff reported having application,
                                          monitoring, and/or reporting responsibilities for the Title I program,
                                          followed by IDEA, for which monitoring responsibilities were more often
                                          cited. (See table III.5.)

Table III.5: Number of School-Level
Staff Members Reporting                                                                                   Number of staff involved in
Responsibilities for Application,                                                                           administrative activitya
Monitoring, or Reporting Activities, by   Program                                                   Application Monitoring           Reporting
Program, School Year 1996-97
                                          Title I                                                               87             74          53
                                          IDEA                                                                   2             39          17
                                          Safe and Drug-Free Schools                                            12               8          8
                                          Perkins                                                                2               2          1
                                          Eisenhower                                                            11               2          1
                                          Innovative Education                                                   7               1          1
                                          School-to-Work                                                         3               8          9
                                          Even Start                                                             1               0          0
                                          Bilingual Education                                                    0               1          0
                                          Goals 2000                                                             0               1          0
                                          a
                                           School-level staff could report having responsibility for one or more types of administrative
                                          activities.




                                          Page 28                                             GAO/HEHS-99-180 Federal Education Funding
                                             Appendix III
                                             Illustrative Examples From Districts and
                                             Schools




                                             As table III.5 also showed, the largest number of school-level staff had
                                             responsibilities for the Title I program, followed by the IDEA program.
                                             Table III.6 shows that staff with administrative responsibilities for the Title
                                             I program tended to spend 8 hours or less per year on each of the
                                             administrative activities to which they were assigned. For the IDEA
                                             program, for which staff had more monitoring responsibilities, the amount
                                             of time school-level staff spent monitoring was split between staff who
                                             reported that they spent 9 to 40 hours and staff who spent 40 hours or
                                             more in a school year on monitoring activities.


Table III.6: Number of School-Level Staff Who Reported Spending Time on Administrative Activities and Amount of Time
Spent, School Year 1996-97
Hours per school year
                              Application                             Monitoring                              Reporting
                   8 hours         9 to 40    40 hours     8 hours          9 to 40     40 hours   8 hours        9 to 40     40 hours
                    or less         hours      or more      or less          hours       or more    or less        hours       or more
Title I                 69             15              3         51              17           6         36            15            2
IDEA                     1              1              0          3              18          18          2                8         7
Safe and
Drug-Free
Schools                 10              2              0          3                4          1          6                2         0
Eisenhower               9              2              0          1                1          0          0                1         0
Innovative
Education                7              0              0          0                1          0          1                0         0
School-to-Work           2              0              1          3                2          3          5                2         2
Perkins                  1              1              0          0                2          0          0                1         0
Goals 2000               0              0              0          0                1          0          0                0         0
Bilingual
Education                0              0              0          1                0          0          0                0         0
Even Start               1              0              0          0                0          0          0                0         0




                                             Page 29                                       GAO/HEHS-99-180 Federal Education Funding
Appendix IV

GAO Contacts and Staff Acknowledgments


                  Eleanor L. Johnson, Assistant Director, (202) 512-7209
GAO Contacts      Sherri K. Doughty, Project Manager, (202) 512-7273



                  In addition to those named above, Sandra Baxter, Patricia Bundy,
Staff             Kimberly Campbell, Tamara Lumpkin, Ellen K. Schwartz, Edward
Acknowledgments   Tuchman, Craig Winslow, and Elizabeth T. Morrison made key
                  contributions to this report.




(104893)          Page 30                              GAO/HEHS-99-180 Federal Education Funding
Ordering Information

The first copy of each GAO report and testimony is free.
Additional copies are $2 each. Orders should be sent to the
following address, accompanied by a check or money order
made out to the Superintendent of Documents, when
necessary. VISA and MasterCard credit cards are accepted, also.
Orders for 100 or more copies to be mailed to a single address
are discounted 25 percent.

Orders by mail:

U.S. General Accounting Office
P.O. Box 37050
Washington, DC 20013

or visit:

Room 1100
700 4th St. NW (corner of 4th and G Sts. NW)
U.S. General Accounting Office
Washington, DC

Orders may also be placed by calling (202) 512-6000
or by using fax number (202) 512-6061, or TDD (202) 512-2537.

Each day, GAO issues a list of newly available reports and
testimony. To receive facsimile copies of the daily list or any
list from the past 30 days, please call (202) 512-6000 using a
touchtone phone. A recorded menu will provide information on
how to obtain these lists.

For information on how to access GAO reports on the INTERNET,
send an e-mail message with "info" in the body to:

info@www.gao.gov

or visit GAO’s World Wide Web Home Page at:

http://www.gao.gov




PRINTED ON    RECYCLED PAPER
United States                       Bulk Rate
General Accounting Office      Postage & Fees Paid
Washington, D.C. 20548-0001           GAO
                                 Permit No. G100
Official Business
Penalty for Private Use $300

Address Correction Requested