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More Details on Budget Proposals for Depts. of Ed and Labor


February 16, 2012

More Details on Budget Proposals for Depts. of Ed and Labor

By: Jamie

On Feb. 13, the president released his budget priorities for FY 2013. The budget invests in CTE by maintaining FY 2012 levels for Perkins and proposing $1 billion over three years for career academies. One important note about the proposed Perkins funding level is that it is linked to the Administration’s goals for reauthorization of Perkins (although this is very unlikely to occur next year). Within the proposal, $105 million of the overall $1.1 billion Perkins allocation is redirected from the regular state formula to what is likely to be a competitive grant initiative to spur innovation. We expect more information on this when the Department of Education releases its Perkins reauthorization Blueprint later this spring. It is important to remember that the president’s budget is not law, but just a guiding document that Congress can use or not use when allocating funding to specific programs.

Overall, the Department of Education’s $69.8 billion budget freezes many tried and true programs including IDEA state grants, Title I of ESEA, adult education and 21st century learning communities, along with others. Regarding K-12 education, once again, the president proposes to consolidate 39 programs into nine funding streams. This reflects the Administration’s blueprint for reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA). Additional highlights include increasing the Pell Grant Maximum award to $5,685; $80 million for STEM teacher and leader training and professional development; increases to Race to the Top; a new proposal to expand Race to the Top to postsecondary institutions; reforms for Supplemental Education Opportunity Grants, Federal Work-Study and Perkins loans; and $55.5 million for “First in the World Fund” to strengthen college completion.

The Department of Labor’s budget rallies around the theme “Good Jobs for Everyone.”Unlike the Department of Education’s budget, the Department of Labor’s has few surprises or new initiatives. Highlights of the legislation include: slight decreases in funding for adult and dislocated workers; level-funding for YouthBuild and youth employment programs (WIA); $125 million for the Workforce Innovation Fund; $12.5 billion for Pathways Back to Work, which strives to connect workers to jobs; and the elimination of Women in Apprenticeships.

On Feb. 16, ACTE hosted a Webinar that discusses in detail the president’s budget. If you missed this, you can view the archive at ACTE’s Web site. If you have any questions or need clarification, please contact me at jbaxter@acteonline.org.

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