Category Archives: Federal Budget

Encourage Congress to fully fund IDEA

While there are relatively few things about public education funding that governors, state legislators and school board members from across the political spectrum agree on, one of them is likely that the federal government is under-funding special education in this country.

A renewed push is now underway for Congress to fully fund the federal commitment under the federal special education law known as the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA).  You can join in that effort. Continue reading Encourage Congress to fully fund IDEA

A closer look at Special Education funding in Wisconsin—Part two of a series

This is the second of a series of blog posts that takes a look at special education requirements and funding, including both state and federal funding.  This post focuses on federal funding. 

When state and federal mandates to provide special education service were first imposed on local school districts back in the 1970s, it was generally assumed that targeted state and federal funding that went along with these mandates would cover much, if not all, of the costs of providing special  education services to students with disabilities.  That assumption was quickly proven wrong. Continue reading A closer look at Special Education funding in Wisconsin—Part two of a series

A closer look at Special Education funding in Wisconsin—Part one of a series

This is the first of a series of blog posts that takes a look at special education requirements and funding, including both state and federal funding.

Both state and federal law require school districts to provide special education services to pupils with disabilities.

Wisconsin state law has mandated special education services for pupils with disabilities since the 1973-74 school year.  This predates the federal mandate for special education services, which began in 1975 with the enactment of the federal Education for All Handicapped Children Act (EHCA), the precursor to the current  federal Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (or IDEA).  Continue reading A closer look at Special Education funding in Wisconsin—Part one of a series

U.S. Department of Justice announces availability of federal school safety grants

As we reported, Congress recently boosted federal funding for school safety.

The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ), Office of Justice Programs (OJP) and Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA), has published two notices for competitive grant programs under the recently approved STOP School Violence Act: Continue reading U.S. Department of Justice announces availability of federal school safety grants

Federal update: Career and Technical Education (CTE) draws attention

The U.S. Senate’s Health Education Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee announced it will hold an Executive Session next week to vote on an as-yet-unnumbered proposal to reauthorize the Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education (CTE) Act.  The proposal is included on the list of bills to be considered Wednesday, June 20, at 10:30 am.

Nearly a year ago, the U.S. House passed bipartisan legislation (HR 2353) to reauthorize the Perkins CTE Act.  While the House measure passed on a voice vote, similar proposals have been stalled in the Senate amid differences of opinion between the chairman, Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-TN) and ranking Democrats, particularly over how much authority the Secretary of Education should have to oversee the program.

Continue reading Federal update: Career and Technical Education (CTE) draws attention

Federal plan to create “voucher-like” program for military-connected students draws criticism

A controversial proposal before Congress that would redirect federal Impact Aid funding away from public school districts and toward education savings accounts (ESAs) for students in military families is drawing criticism from the very families it is intended to benefit.

H.R. 5199, the Education Savings Accounts for Military Families Act, would re-purpose federal Impact Aid funding into a voucher-like program that would create ESAs military families could use to cover various education expenses – including private school tuition and private tutoring.    Continue reading Federal plan to create “voucher-like” program for military-connected students draws criticism

New federal spending law increases education aid; rejects push for vouchers

The new federal 2018 fiscal year spending law passed by Congress and signed into law by President Trump increases spending at the U.S. Department of Education by $2.6 billion over previously enacted levels, up to $70.9 billion.

The two biggest federal K-12 education spending programs will see significant increases–Title I funding, which funds programs to improve the education of disadvantaged students, is increased by $300 million to $15.8 billion, and IDEA grants for special education rise by $299 million to $13.1 billion. Continue reading New federal spending law increases education aid; rejects push for vouchers