The Miami-Dade County school district, anticipating a possible influx of students from Cuba, is asking the federal government for additional funding to help educate them.
The Miami Herald reports that Superintendent Alberto Carvalho says the cost of educating incoming students could be “upwards of $40 million.” The school board voted to ask federal officials to provide money so that the system can afford to accommodate students newly arrived on U.S. shores.
“This should not force a financial crunch on our school system,” Carvalho says. “This can be avoided if our federal government takes action.”
In the previous school year, the federal government provided Miami-Dade schools with an additional $5.6 million in funding for immigrant children.
Almost 4,000 Cuban students have enrolled in Miami-Dade schools in the last six months.
The Pew Research Center says there has been a 78 percent increase in the number of Cubans arriving in the United States over the last year.
Miami-Dade schools have enrolled 13,000 foreign-born students since July. By the end of this school year, the district could enroll more than 20,000, an increase of 5,000 from last year.
A majority are coming from Cuba, and the second-most are from Venezuela.
Students arriving in the district typically need additional services, such as language instruction.
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