NJDOE News
For More Information Contact the Public Information Office:
    Kathryn Forsyth, Director
    Jon Zlock
    609-292-1126

For Release: June 1, 2004


DOE Awards Abbott Aid Figures for 2004-05 School Year

Treasurer’s Statement on Supplemental Abbott Aid

The Department of Education (DOE) on Friday notified 25 out of 30 Abbott v. Burke school districts of their 2004-05 award for Discretionary Education Opportunity (DEO) aid, which was formerly called "supplemental aid." The New Jersey Supreme Court required the notifications be submitted by the last business day in May.

Two districts, Union City and Hoboken, did not apply for additional aid. Three districts — Trenton, Irvington and Garfield — settled their budgets with the DOE and had already received confirmation of their awards.

On Friday, the DOE awarded approximately $336 million in Discretionary Education Opportunity aid, which is subject to legislative appropriations and the conditions set for proposed programs and adjustments that may be produced by audits for fiscal year 2004.

As in the past, the amount that has been awarded exceeds the amount recommended in the Governor’s proposed budget — $181 million is currently recommended. Because there will be further adjustments to DEO aid in the form of settlements with districts, appeals, and revisions required by the annual audit, the Commissioner of Education will not make a recommendation for final funding to the legislature until such adjustments have been completed.

In deciding the aid amounts, Assistant Commissioner Gordon MacInnes, who oversees the DOE’s Abbott Division, said that the DOE’s focus for Abbott districts remains classroom instruction, improved student learning, and providing an effective and efficient education.

"We focus on what works – effective and efficient practices," MacInnes said. "The same holds true in districts across the board: is money ending up in the classroom? Are children learning? What will it take for them to succeed?"

"Educators are often asked to deal with different problems," MacInnes continued. "But what counts is whether all children are educated well enough to have the same opportunities. The DOE continues to stress that we must provide the best education possible for children to succeed. The aid figures we release today speak to that."

For more information, please call the Department of Education Public Information Office at (609) 292-1126.