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$70 Million Of Education Initiatives Live On In Rudy Crew's Wake

Millions of dollars in targeted education spending that Oregon lawmakers approved this session will reach schools this school year. They’re initiatives left behind by former education chief Rudy Crew.

Rudy Crew

Rudy Crew

April Baer/OPB

Before Crew left Oregon to run a college in New York, he pushed four proposals: a network to improve teaching, and investments in science education, early reading, and college and career prep.

Legislators signed off on spending $72 million  on those.

With Crew gone, state education officials are adding 21 new positions. Some are for a new Office of Education Equity.

But Cindy Hunt with the education department says most of the money will help schools more directly, through grants and contracts with technical experts. Among the grant programs rolling out this summer is one geared to help students who don’t speak English at home.

“They’ll really be used to get students proficient, not just in English, but in a second language as well,” Hunt said.

Hunt says some of the initiative money draws from the Common School Fund, and needs approval from the State Land Board.

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