Advocacy

NAESP Funding Priorities

NAESP is a vocal advocate for elementary principals in the budget and appropriations process.  Outlined below are our priorities in advocating for more funding in the areas that matter to elementary principals the most.

Funding priorities for FY 2017 include:

  • Restore all educational funding to pre-sequester levels
  • Prioritizing Title I formula grants (targeted and schoolwide)
  • Hold Congress to its original commitment to fund at least 40% of the extra costs to education special needs students through IDEA
  • Funding streams for high-quality early childhood education programs
  • Set aside funds for the recruitment, training and development of effective principals

 

History of NAESP’s Budget Funding Priorities

 

 

FY12

Enacted

FY13

Enacted

FY14

Enacted

FY15

Enacted

FY16

Enacted

Title I Grants to LEAS

14,516,457

13,760,219

14,384,802

14,409,802

14,909,802

IDEA State Grants

11,577,855

10,974,866

11,472,848

11,497,848

11,912,848

Title II, Part A

2,466,567

2,337,830

2,349,830

2,349,830

2,349,830

School Leadership

29,107

27,584

25,763

16,368

16,368

Preschool Development Grants

0

0

250,000

250,000

250,000

Striving Readers

159,698

151,378

158,000

160,000

190,000

21st Century Community Learning Centers

1,151,673

1,091,564

1,149,370

1,151,673

1,166,673

ESEA Title I Grants to LEAs

Title I provides formula grants to states and, in turn, to districts to help disadvantaged children achieve proficiency on challenging academic standards and to improve the performance of low-achieving schools. Title I grants have been reduced since FY 2012 due to sequestration and discretionary spending caps. These reductions to Title I hurt the neediest students and school districts. The program received $14.4 billion in FY 2015, and the president proposed a $1 billion increase for a total of $15.4 billion in his FY 2016 budget. Congress granted a $500 million increase in the final FY 2016.  NAESP urges the President and Congress to prioritize Title I formula grants for increases in FY 2017 over competitive grant programs like Race to the Top.

 

ESEA Title II, Part A

Title II, Part A provides formula grants to states to increase academic achievement by improving teacher and principal quality. Title II, Part A was funded at its post-sequester level of $2.3 billion in FY 2015, and the president requested that the program be flat-funded in FY 2016 and Congress met that request. There is a growing need for professional development for principals, assistant principals, and other school leaders to build their capacity to implement a wave of new federal, state, and local initiatives, such as the implementation of college and career ready standards, new teacher evaluation systems, school improvement models, and accountability requirements. NAESP urges the President and Congress to fund Title II, Part A at its pre-sequester level of $2.5 billion in FY 2017 and to require school districts to allocate no less than 10 percent of Title II, Part A funds for principal professional development.

 

IDEA State Grants

The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) State Grant program (Part B) was established to assist state and local educational agencies’ efforts to educate children with disabilities by implementing, expanding, and improving access to high-quality special education and related services. The program received $11.5 billion in FY 2015 and the president has requested $11.7 billion in FY 2016, which is an increase of $175 million over FY 2015 appropriations.  NAESP urges the President and Congress to make annual incremental increases to federal funding for special education so it can ultimately fulfill its promise to fund 40 percent of the national average per-pupil expenditure for students receiving IDEA services. NAESP also urges Congress to pass the IDEA Full Funding Act.

 

School Leadership

Research has shown that effective school leadership is second only to instruction as a factor in raising student achievement. This federal grant program focuses on recruiting, mentoring, and training principals and assistant principals to serve in high-need schools. The School Leadership Program has seen decreases in funding since FY 2012. The program is currently funded at $16.4 million, which is $9.4 million less than its FY 2015 level. Funding for this program is crucial to school leaders since less than 4 percent of the Title II “allowable use” funds currently go to principal professional development. In his FY 2016 budget proposal, the president requested to consolidate the School Leadership Program into a larger grant program called Teacher and Principal Pathways but Congress opted to keep the School Leadership Program and flat fund it at $16.4 million. NAESP calls on the President and Congress to recognize the important role of school leaders in student achievement and provide no less than $35 million in FY 2017 for the recruitment, training, and development of effective principals.

 

Preschool Development Grants

The Preschool Development Grants were first funded at $250 million in FY 2014 under Race to the Top.  The funds are used for competitive awards to States to develop, enhance, or expand high quality preschool programs and early childhood education programs for children from low- and moderate- coming families including children with disabilities.  In FY 2015 the grants were level funded but funding came from the Fund for Improvement of Education (FIE).  In his FY 2016 budget request President Obama requested an increase to $750 million.  Initially, Congress proposed to eliminate the program and appropriate no funding but strong advocacy efforts for the program resulted in level funding of $250 million. NAESP urges the President and Congress to continue to prioritize early education funding by continuing to fund the Preschool Development Grants.  NAESP calls on Congress to officially authorize the program and to high quality early childhood education for all.