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ERS Briefing: Opportunities Abound

How Massachusetts districts can use new state funding to re-imagine schools and systems

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The 2019 Student Opportunity Act creates a once-in-a-generation moment for Massachusetts students: the Commonwealth has committed $1.5 billion dollars over seven years to make good on the promise that best-in-the-nation education can be a reality for all Massachusetts children, especially English learners and students from low-income families. But daily demands don't evaporate with expanded funding, and it can be difficult for district leaders to know: can we really afford the kinds of changes that will transform school for our kids?

Our team at ERS examined real Massachusetts districts to test what's possible with expanded SOA funding. Using state funding allocations and school data, we found a set of strategies to support new teachers, give attention to students who are struggling, and help kids build the social-emotional skills to succeed — all made possible by funds districts didn’t have a year ago. This briefing shares strategic practices that take advantage of this moment to make big changes and help students succeed.

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