From the Deputy's Desk: Susie Hedalen is the Deputy Superintendent for Education Services
July 15, 2019
The Office of Public Instruction oversees the implementation of many federal funding streams which are designed to ensure equitable access to a high-quality education for all Montana students. One of the largest programs is Title I of the federal Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA), which provides financial assistance to local schools with high numbers of children from low-income families. In Montana, the vast majority of the state's over 800 public schools qualify for Title I assistance.
Montana's Title I support is lead by the OPI's Federal Programs Director, Jack O'Connor. Jack ensures that school leaders understand their eligbility for Title I funds and how to access these funds for their students. Recently, Jack was appointed as Vice President of the National Association of ESEA State Program Administrators (NAESPA). NAESPA is a membership organization made up of State ESEA Program Administrators and their staff from each of the states and territories charged with managing their state federal education programs. They ensure compliance with federal regulations, but more importantly, work to see that all children, especially those living in economically disadvantaged conditions, have to the opportunity to receive a high-quality education.
Jack has been with the OPI for twelve years. While at the OPI he as been the School Improvement Director, Assistant Title I Director, Title I Director, and now Federal Programs Director. He supervises Title I, II, V, Neglected or Delinquent Programs, and Homeless Education under the McKinney-Vento Act. For more information on Montana's Title I programs, visit the OPI's website.