Tag Archives: Individuals with Disabilties Education Act (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

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

WASB leaders take advocacy for WI public schools to Congress

Last week, members of the WASB Executive Committee traveled to our nation’s capital to meet with members of our Wisconsin Congressional delegation and their staff and discuss WASB’s concerns and priorities for federal legislation affecting K-12 public schools.

It was a vital time to be on Capitol Hill as Congress worked on funding legislation to avert a federal government shutdown and to begin finalizing 2018 fiscal year funding as well as making preparations to take up the fiscal year 2019 budget. Continue reading WASB leaders take advocacy for WI public schools to Congress

President’s 2019 budget plan would cut federal education funding by more than 5%

On Monday (Feb. 12), President Donald Trump unveiled his budget proposal for federal fiscal year 2019 that starts on Oct. 1, 2018.  This is the second budget proposal of his presidency, and, in many ways, it resembles the budget he proposed last year.

The latest plan would cut the U.S. Department of Education’s budget for fiscal 2019 by about $3.6 billion or roughly 5.3 percent compared to current levels.  While significant, this represents a smaller cut than what the president sought for fiscal 2018, when he proposed cutting $9.2 billion—or 13.5 percent—from the Education Department. Continue reading President’s 2019 budget plan would cut federal education funding by more than 5%

Federal Appropriations Bill for Education Gains U.S. Senate Subcommittee Approval

Today (Sept. 6), the U.S. Senate Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education Appropriations Subcommittee unanimously approved a bipartisan FY2018 funding bill for the federal Departments of Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education, and related agencies, that is $3 billion above the FY2017 level and $27.5 billion above the President’s budget request.

The Senate subcommittee also rejected President Trump’s proposed cuts to teacher training and afterschool funding (see below).   Full Senate committee consideration of the funding measure is scheduled for Thursday.  The 2018 federal fiscal year begins on Oct. 1.

Here are capsule descriptions of some of the key funding provisions for K-12 education:

Continue reading Federal Appropriations Bill for Education Gains U.S. Senate Subcommittee Approval

US Senate Set to Try Again on Health Care Reform

U.S. Senate Republicans on Thursday (July 13) released a revised version of their bill to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act, otherwise known as Obamacare. The changes in the revised version are aimed at securing the votes of reluctant GOP senators in order to win the bill’s passage.

The new Senate bill, like earlier versions, would convert Medicaid from an open-ended entitlement to a system of fixed (capped) payments to states. The new bill makes no change to the indexing that would be used to adjust future federal Medicaid outlays, which under the Senate version would be pegged to the consumer price index (CPI-U) rather than measures tied to medical care costs, which historically  have risen faster than the CPI.

The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) has projected federal outlays for Medicaid under the Senate bill would decline by 26 percent by 2026 in comparison with projections under current law. (See previous post.)

Continue reading US Senate Set to Try Again on Health Care Reform