Sending Office: Honorable Marcia L. Fudge
Support Title I Funding in the FY19 Appropriations
form to sign on by COB March 25, 2019
Please join us in requesting an appropriation for Title I-A of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) of an amount truly reflective of program need, but no less than $17 billion, an amount $1.1 billion above the enacted FY19 level. Such an appropriation
would be adequate in fulfilling the bipartisan agreement embodied in the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), account for the recently enacted Bipartisan Budget Act of 2018 (H.R. 1892) and ensure that school districts do not continue to experience cuts to their
Title I-A allocations.
With more than 50 percent of students enrolled in our nation’s public schools coming from low-income families, increased financial assistance to local educational agencies and schools serving high numbers or high percentages of low-income children is especially
critical. Title I-A supports schools to ensure that all students, including those at risk of not meeting challenging, state academic standards, fulfill their academic potential and graduate from high school ready for college and/or start careers.
We implore your careful consideration of ESSA’s statutory revisions to Title I-A to inform the program’s FY20 appropriation level. Notably, ESSA combined the previously-appropriated School Improvement Grant (SIG) program funding into the larger Title I-A
funding stream, resulting in the requirement that states reserve seven percent (formerly four percent) of their Title I-A allocation to support school improvement. To ensure that (1) States did not see a total decrease in critical school improvement funds,
and (2) LEA Title I-A allocations were not cut due to the increased state reservation, Congress purposefully increased the Title I-A authorization levels to cover appropriations levels for both Title I-A and SIG and included an agreed-upon year-after-year
percentage increase for Title I-A. The enacted FY19 funding level for Title I-A failed to embody the bipartisan ESSA agreement. We urge you to reverse this troubling trend and increase Title I-A appropriations to account for the underfunding of ESSA implementation
and better align with Congressional intent.
Please join us in urging an FY20 Title I-A appropriation of an amount truly reflective of program need, but no less than $17 billion. Doing so will fulfill the bipartisan commitment to increase Title I funding by agreed-upon percentages each year, by more
than $1 billion during the life of the program authorization under ESSA, and most importantly will ensure that critical funds continue to support effective programs and improve low-performing schools.
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