Welcome to Fed Ed Policy, a blog that covers developments impacting federal education policy, with an emphasis on K-12 education. For energy, environment, conservation, and animal welfare issues (and past postings on education), please visit my blog, Federal Policy Week.
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The President’s Budget:
President Obama sent his FY15 Budget to Congress. As expected from Obama’s State of the Union address, the President has again requested funding for universal preschool. The budget request for the Department of Education includes many familiar programs. Some highlights include:
- A new Race to the Top Program – this one focused on closing the achievement gap between races.
- The ConnectEd Initiative – expanding wireless networks in schools and libraries. Several major corporations – many will eventually benefit financially- have already pledged to donate to the Initiative.
- Funding for programs that promote the adoption of the Common Core Curriculum, testing, assessments, and funding for “effective” teachers – some controversial programs that have questionable success, especially for the funding.
- The President’s college rating program, which has led to concern in many segments of the higher education community at the ED fora and otherwise, and a new College Opportunity and Graduation Bonuses program for colleges that improve “college education outcomes for low- and moderate-income students.”
- A reorganization of STEM Programs.
Reaction to the President’s education budget was swift.
The House Education Committee Chairman’s statement criticized the President for expecting “the country to support more of the same.” And, goes on to state “the American people can no longer afford to invest in the president’s failed agenda.”
Reaction to the $69 billion budget request by education groups was not surprisingly mixed, with some pet programs getting new or increased funding while other proven programs receiving no increases in funding – many of the pet programs focusing on a continued drive for testing and assessments (euphemistically called “results-driven”).