Special Edition of Washington Update: Overview of the Budget Released Today by President Trump for FY 2018
Washington Update, May 23, 2017
I want to provide you with an overview of the budget released today by President Trump for FY 2018. Called by many "draconian" and "an end to public education as we know it," it recommends severe cuts of over $9 billion or 13% to the US Department of Education. It eliminates or reduces spending for several existing programs while recommending $1.2 billion for new school choice programs. Below are more detailed highlights.
For Higher Education
- Title II-A of ESSA: Formula grant for states and local districts to support personnel development and related work: eliminated -- $2.1B
- 21st Century After School Programs: eliminated -$1.2B
- Title I of ESSA: cut by 4% or $600M
- Title IV-A of ESSA: Student Support and Academic Enrichment Grants: eliminated -- $400 M
- Career and Technical Education: cut by 13% or $148M
- Literacy Development Grants: eliminated -- $190 M
- Javits Gifted and Talented Education: eliminated -- $12M
- Special Olympics: eliminated -- $10M
- Teacher Quality Partnership Grants: partnerships between K-12 and higher education to prepare new teachers for high need fields in residency programs: eliminated -- $43M
- Pell Grants: scholarships for low income students: $3.9B rescinded; maximum individual grant frozen at $5,920 - less than 30% of the cost of the average four year college
- Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants (SEOG): colleges provide grants to low income students: eliminated -- $733M
- Work Study: helps colleges pay students for working while they are in school: cut by $490M (almost in half)
- Federal TRIO Programs: supports low income, first generation and other needy students to attend and graduate from college: cut $142 million (15%)
- Student Loans: Cut by $143B over ten years through changes that will raise debt students incur
Biggest Winners: SCHOOL CHOICE
- Public Service Loan Forgiveness (often used by teachers): eliminates this option that forgives the remaining balance on student loans for borrowers in an income-driven repayment plan who work full time in public service and who make on-time payments for 10 years.
Other Key Programs Which Were Level Funded or Cut or Increased Slightly:
- FOCUS (Furthering Options for Children to Unlock Success): a new $1B grant program which would provide funding to school districts that agree to adopt weighted student funding combined with open enrollment systems that allow Federal, State and local funds to follow students to the public school of their choice. ESSA would have to be amended to allow for this.
- Voucher Program: an addition of $250M for the Education Innovation and Research program to create a program for competitive awards for applicants to provide scholarships for students from low income families to attend the private school of their choice and to build the evidence base around private school choice.
- Charter Schools: $167 M increase
Remember that this budget is just a proposal. Congress will now take a look at it (but not likely take it seriously) and create their own budget and appropriations bills. However, this budget should serve as an action alert to those who are concerned about the overall health of public education and the particular programs that were targeted. Strong advocacy is in order over the next few months as the Congress gets to work.
- IDEA Part B State Grants: cut 1% to $11.9B
- IDEA Personnel Prep: flat funded at $84M
- Transition Programs for Students with Intellectual Disabilities: Flat funded at $12M
- Institute for Education Sciences: increase of $12 M to $617M
- Research in Special Education: flat funding at $54M
- Office for Civil Rights: cut 2% to $107M
The full budget and budget justifications (elaborate explanations of each program and rationale for cuts/increases/flat funding) can be found here:
Jane E. West Ph.D.
Education Policy Consultant