By Cara Matthews, Gannett Albany
State Education Commissioner John King announced this afternoon that he has restored federal School Improvement Grants to five of the 10 high-needs districts whose funding he suspended last month.
The districts are Poughkeepsie, Rochester, Albany, Schenectady and Syracuse, and their grants total more than $30 million.
They have all submitted acceptable teacher-evaluation and support agreements, as required by their initial applications for the SIG money.
King suspended roughly $115 million in funding to 10 SIG districts in January because they had not finalized agreements on a new teacher-evaluation system with their unions, or the agreements did not meet all the state and federal requirements.
After learning King had decided to suspend the SIG money, "these five districts went back to the drawing board and worked out agreements that meet the state and federal requirements," he said in a statement.