Federal Education Policy

Van Hollen Introduces Bill to Fund Title I, Special Education

U.S. Senator Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.) introduces the Keep Our Promise to America's Children and Teachers Act to fund schools serving low income students and special education.

U.S. Senator Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.) wants boost funding to American's neediest schools and special education programs through the Keep Our Promise to America's Children and Teachers (PACT) Act.  The legislation would create a 10-year mandatory "glide path" to fully fund both Title I and the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) over a 10-year period in the federal budget.

"When our children have access to a first-rate, quality education not only do they succeed, but our economy and our entire country succeed," said Van Hollen in a statement. "Congress had the right intentions when it passed Title I and IDEA, but we have fallen short on the promises in the law to fully fund these critical programs."

The Title I formula has been underfunded by $347 billion from 2015-2017, according to analysis by the Alliance to Reclaim Our Schools. The IDEA requires the federal government to fund 40 percent of special education costs, but currently IDEA state grants fund 14.7 percent. 

The legislation is supported by the National Education Association, the American Federation of Teachers, the Alliance to Reclaim Our Schools and AASA, the School Superintendents Association.

More information on the legislation can be found here.

About the Author

Sara Friedman is a reporter/producer for Campus Technology, THE Journal and STEAM Universe covering education policy and a wide range of other public-sector IT topics.

Friedman is a graduate of Ithaca College, where she studied journalism, politics and international communications.

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