Three nonprofits that tutor and teach D.C. kids how to read lost $3.75 million dollars in grant funding because the city missed a federal deadline. Two people have lost their jobs over what the mayor calls both a technical and human error.
In 19 D.C. schools, Reading Partners serves nearly 1,000 kids a week. So when its executive director, Karen Gardner, learned the city missed a federal deadline allocating her nonprofit more than $560,000 in AmeriCorps funds and staffing, she was in shock.
“My initial reaction was just complete disbelief that it couldn’t be possible that we would not have this completely essential, not just source of funding, but also source of talent that we need in order to operate reading centers for our students,” Gardner told WTOP.
Mayor Muriel Bowser points the finger at Serve DC which she says should have reported any technical issues before missing the Corporation for National and Community Service deadline, a body funded by Congress, which in turn, funds AmeriCorps. The Literacy Lab and City Year D.C. are also affected by the loss in grants.