Parents and educators urge Congress to fully fund IDEA

Parents and educators urged Congress to fully fund the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) during a Nov. 16 virtual briefing conducted by Fulfill the Promise, a national civil rights campaign for special education, along with United Teachers Los Angeles, NEA, and the American Federation of Teachers. Participants talked about how the historic underfunding of IDEA has impacted students with disabilities, and how meeting the promise that Congress made decades ago would have significant, positive impacts on those students, their schools, and communities. Sen. Chris Van Hollen (D-MD) and Rep. Ted Lieu (D-CA) delivered remarks.

The IDEA Full Funding Act (S. 3213/H.R. 5984) would create a mandatory 10-year path to fully funding IDEA while the Keep Our Pact Act (S. 72/H.R. 764) would create a mandatory 10-year path to fully funding both IDEA and Title I of the Every Student Succeeds Act—critical programs for the students most in need. Congress promised to pay 40 percent of the excess costs of special education services when IDEA was first passed, but has never come close; the federal share is now less than 16 percent. Now is the time to fulfill America’s promise of equal opportunity for all students.

Email your members of Congress and tell them to cosponsor and support the IDEA Full Funding Act and the Keep Our PACT Act.

11 responses to “Parents and educators urge Congress to fully fund IDEA

  1. Fully funding IDEA will help students with disabilities, but it will also help all students. Schools are required by federal law to provide special Ed services but don’t get the federal funding needed to do so… the money for those services has to come from somewhere.

    Betting that we would see fewer cuts to overall school programs (art, music, languages, etc) if special Ed was funded fully.

    I hope enough people demand this important change. It’s insane that as a nation IDEA was mandated so long ago but still has not gotten the appropriation fully funded. Our public schools provide a critical service and need this support.

  2. I work with severe special needs children K-5. They need TLC AND an education. Many will become voters. Others will need a special place in this world. I live in a red area where people get away with confederate flags and displaying long guns just for show. Everything is political, including vaccinating for Covid at this time. It’s obsene. For the good of all does not compute for ‘Heil trumpf cultists’. There have been many comments about “ELIMINATING the black, brown, Asian, LGBTQ and what the heck, the pitiful and weak.” This is a true belief and is in action. A local far right radical extremist is quoted, “If we have to pay to take care of them, educate them and raise them, then we will be paying for years to come for these disabled kids, most of them who can’t do anything.” Yes, we need to care for and bring to full potential any child in our society, in our world. We don’t need to vote on this. We just need to use reason, logic and common sense.

  3. As someone who worked in the field supporting people with disabilities for over 40 years, I can assure you that it is absolutely necessary for this bill to be passed. It is the right thing to do for many who cannot speak for themselves. Thank you for your honest consideration of the need.

  4. I am educator and the grandfather of a child who cannot walk or talk. Don’t let any person or legislator tell you that they are “pro-life” if they do not support or help the very life of a child that is right in front of them!

    1. Got that right, and it comes right from their cult leader:

      Trump (February, 2016), “I love the poorly educated.”

  5. Idea needs to be fully funded and then some. We must act immediately, actually yesterday. The affect this Pandemic has had on children is devastating and they need help now more than ever.
    This is a no brainer.

  6. As a 28-year teacher of students with special needs, I support this funding. Every year I have seen our budget shrink. This has adversely effected what I am able to accomplish with our students, especially in the social/emotional and adaptive skills areas. I work with middle school students, and their ability to generalize skills requires practice in a variety of settings, not only at school, but out in the community (field trips). These have been eliminated due to lack of funding) not withstanding Covid-19 restrictions. They can all be successful, but need this extra support. Please increase federal funding for IDEA, so our students of today may become successful adults tomorrow!

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