Federal Education Funding

NAESP advocates for federal investments in education to support programs that benefit schools. Robust federal education funding is an essential resource to increase achievement, growth, and opportunity for students, educators, and schools, particularly for those most in need. Indeed, federal funding is a foundational pillar of any strategy to enhance educational equity. Even with increases in recent years, overall federal education spending is less today than a decade ago when adjusted for inflation—all while student and staff needs and expectations have grown over that same time. Indeed, additional investments in other federal programs that support students such as universal pre-K and school meals are needed as much as traditional K-12 programs.

NAESP believes that:

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Financial support for public education must be shared by local, state, and federal governments and that sufficient and equitable funding for public education is necessary to support an educated, skilled workforce that can compete in a global economy;

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Federal funding is an essential component of more equitable education systems. As such, federal funding should be dispersed through targeted formula grants, not competitive grants, because formula grants ensure that federal funds are spent on the most disadvantaged students and districts in need and because they constitute an important and reliable source of funds for schools serving large numbers of historically underserved students; and

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Financial support should be increased and it should be predictable and continuous, with greater building-level authority in the allocation, distribution, and use of funds at the school level; and

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Federal and state governments as well as school districts must provide sufficient resources and time for principal professional learning opportunities.

NAESP recommends FY24 funding increases for key federal programs supporting students and schools:

TITLE I Grants Local Education Agencies: $20.5 billion (+$2.1 billion)

  • Provides financial support to local educational agencies (LEAs) to help meet the needs of socio-economically disadvantaged students.

TITLE II, PART A Supporting Effective Instruction State Grants: $2.4 billion (+$210 million)

  • Provides formula grants to states and districts to strengthen professional development opportunities for teachers and principals.
  • Helps districts fund principal residencies, expand job-embedded and cohort-based professional learning, and boost mentorship opportunities for aspiring principals.

TITLE IV, PART A, Student Support and Academic Enrichment State Grants: $1.48 billion (+100 million)

  • Supports activities in three broad areas: 1) a well-rounded education, 2) student health and safety (including mental health), and 3) technology in schools.

IDEA State Grants: $16.26 billion (+2.07 billion)

  • Assists state and local educational agencies in educating students with disabilities.
  • Would increase the federal contribution to 13% toward the goal of 40% of the national average per-pupil expenditure.

School Leadership Recruitment and Support Program (SLRSP): $40 million (+$40 million)

  • Previously known as the School Leadership Program, which NAESP worked with Congress to create in 2001, the program focuses on recruiting, mentoring, and training principals and assistant principals to serve in high-need schools.

TITLE I Grants Local Education Agencies: $20.5 billion (+$2.1 billion)

  • Provides financial support to local educational agencies (LEAs) to help meet the needs of socio-economically disadvantaged students.

Head Start: $13.1 billion (+$1.1 billion)

  • Provides early education services to more than 1 million 3–5-year-olds annually.

Take Action

Advocate for your students and school by going to the NAESP Advocacy Action Center to send a message to Congress about this important issue.

Did You Know?

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