From the Daily News:
The Education Department quietly forked over $500,000 to three pet schools, even as most schools lost tens of thousands of dollars in budget cuts.
The three brand-new "21st century" schools got the extra funds outside the normal budgeting process after private donations that the schools had been hoping for did not materialize, sources told the Daily News.
The schools can use the extra cash to hire consultants, buy computer equipment, pay teachers to work more hours - anything that helps them "align" with the Education Department's "21st century vision."
"Students at these schools are receiving an extraordinary level of individualized instruction through the use of technology," said agency spokeswoman Ann Forte.
But the extra city funds are rubbing some critics the wrong way, since they increase the three schools' budgets between 12% and 31% - while most schools are cutting after-school programs and tutoring due to this year's 5% budget cuts.