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Opening Arguments

Spend it or else!

Indiana education officials think they have a good reason for not claiming about $12 million the U.S. Department of Education wanted to give it in 2010 and 2011 to help make sure the children of migrant workers get a good education:

The report said the number of children eligible for Indiana’s program has dwindled from 7,000 to 1,000 since 2007, a decline the state believes resulted from employers hiring workers without families or local seasonal workers, families settling, the lingering economic downturn and increased enforcement of immigration laws.

That's not good enough for the feds, of course:

The Sept. 28 report also said the state needs to improve the program’s plan and other documentation and should take steps to make sure migrant children were counted correctly. The report said state education officials rely too heavily on schools’ counts, which include only children who are already enrolled and miss those who don’t already go to school.

The U.S. Department of Education told the state to take corrective measures within 75 days, which expired Dec. 12. Otherwise, the department said it might place conditions on the state’s 2013 grant.

If we want to give you money, you'd better take it and spend it, or we'll know the reason why! Not exactly a startling attitude for the federal government to have these days, is it?

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