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Trump FY21 Education Budget Slashes K-12 Funding

Mar 3, 2020

The Trump administration's FY21 budget plan calls for block granting the major programs of the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) and to cut overall funding for them by 20% ($4.7 billion). The net result would be the elimination of dedicated funding for professional development (Title II), a well-rounded education (Title IV), and out-of-school opportunities under the 21st Century Community Learning Centers. The lone bright spots were a proposed $100 million increase for IDEA and $680 million for Perkins career technical education state grants.

The Department of Education described the ESSA block grant as the first step in the reauthorization of the law, which is due for renewal in 2020. But upon questioning, federal officials said they had no plans to issue a formal reauthorization plan this year.

The grim budget news was widely condemned by the education community. Ranjit Sidhu, ASCD Executive Director and CEO, called the budget a disappointment. "Rather than use the federal education budget to support the ambitious and much-needed improvements that states and districts are working to put in place, the administration proposes multi-billion-dollar cuts to our K-12 education system. In the name of consolidation and local control, the budget reduces key programs for supporting low-income students, teacher training, college access, and so many other priorities."

"This reduction in funding, and in leadership on important education issues, should be rejected by the Congress...and [instead] provide continued, strong support for our K-12 education students," Sidhu said.

Reprinted from ASCD “Capital Connection” e-newsletter.