Education Week - September 25, 2013 - (Page 22)

22 EDUCATION WEEK n SEPTEMBER 25, 2013 n Fiscal Face-Off The budget uncertainty that education advocates and school districts have lived with for the past two years doesn’t seem likely to go away anytime soon. The across-the-board cuts known as “sequestration” that went into effect last March are still in place. And now, a spending showdown driven by conservative Republicans in Congress over whether to defund the president’s landmark healthcare law means a government shutdown could be in the offing. Plus, there’s likely to be yet another fight in October over raising the federal debt ceiling. Here’s a handy guide to what’s happened so far and what to watch for. —ALYSON KLEIN BIG LOSERS FROM SEQUESTRATION Title I grants to districts: Loss of $725.8 million, bringing program to $13.7 billion Special education state grants: Loss of $578.9 million, bringing program to $10.9 billion Head Start: Loss of roughly $400 million, bringing program to $7.6 billion Impact Aid: Loss of $57.7 million, bringing program to $1.09 billion EXEMPT Medicaid, Children’s Health Insurance Program, Temporary Assistance for Needy Families, school lunch and school breakfast programs, student loan programs (except for a small increase in origination fees), Pell Grants, among others. SOURCES: U.S. Department of Education; Committee for Education Funding; Education Week U.S. Department Of Education, Fiscal Year 2013 overall cut or 5% MULTIMEDIA: $2.5 billion, or roughly what’s spent on state teacher-quality grants. For an interactive timeline with links and additional photos, go to NOVEMBER/DECEMBER These months are likely to be consumed with fiscal fights, including one over whether to keep the sequestration cuts in place, such as for education programs. SOURCE: Education Week U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, center, has pushed his GOP colleagues to use a stopgap budget measure as a chance to defund the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare. President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden have warned of dire consequences if a budget impasse results in a government shutdown. SUMMER 2011 With the federal government poised to exceed its borrowing limit, a newly elected, conservative group of House Republicans launch an effort to rein in the deficit. After a heated battle, Congress hits on a temporary solution: A bipartisan group of lawmakers would try to come up with a long-term deficit reduction plan. If they couldn’t do it, a series of across-the-board spending cuts would go into effect, both for military and domestic programs (including education), starting in January of 2013. “Sequestration” is born. NOVEMBER 2011 The lawmakers tasked with trimming $1.5 trillion from the federal deficit over 10 years fail to reach agreement. Sequestration cuts are set to go into effect in January of 2013. But everyone, including President Barack Obama, is confident Congress can come up with a long-term deficit reduction deal to prevent that from happening. SUMMER 2012 Worried that Congress might not reach a deal to stop the cuts in time, the Senate subcommittee overseeing K-12 spending holds its first hearing on the potential impact of sequestration on education. JANUARY 2013 A long-term deal still remains elusive. Congress reaches a temporary agreement to avert the “fiscal cliff”—a series of tax hikes and spending cuts set to go into effect at midnight on New Year’s Eve. As part of the deal, implementation of the reductions is delayed until March. MARCH 2013 The deadline for averting sequestration passes without any deal. Some programs, such as Head Start and Impact Aid, which helps schools with a federal presence make up for lost tax revenue, feel the effects quickly. Most school districts have time to plan, since the cuts wouldn’t hit them until the start of the 2013-14 school year. AUGUST 2013 School districts largely complete their budgets for the 2013-14 school year. Many try to avert layoffs, by delaying purchases of technology and classroom materials, and cutting professional development instead. Education advocates warn that the effects could get worse in coming years. SEPT. 30, 2013 Fiscal year 2013 is set to end. Congress must complete the spending bills for fiscal 2014 or pass an extension measure. Otherwise, the government will shut down. MID-OCTOBER Congress must again raise the federal debt ceiling, or face yet another government shutdown threat. Speaker of the House John Boehner, R-Ohio, is struggling to forge a budget deal in Congress amid pressure from conservatives in his own party. STALEMATE SNAPSHOTS This fall is hardly the first instance of budget brinksmanship in recent years. J. Scott Applewhite/AP Charles Dharapak/AP-File J. Scott Applewhite/AP-File

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Education Week - September 25, 2013

Education Week - September 25, 2013
DIGITAL DIRECTIONS: Phila. Seeks Salvation in Lessons From Model School
INDUSTRY & INNOVATION: Schools Investing in New Measures To Boost Security
For Intellectually Disabled, a ‘Landmark’
States Mull Next Steps on Testing
News in Brief
Report Roundup
New Research Consortium Targets D.C. Schools
Social Studies Framework to Guide Standards
Charters Turn to More-Unified Application Systems
Blogs of the Week
Texas Lesson-Plan Brawl Resonates Beyond State Border
Business Organizations Rally on Common Core
Fiscal Face-Off
How to Improve the Common Core
Silence Is Not Neutrality
What Are We Doing to Support Great Teachers?
TopSchoolJobs Recruitment Marketplace
A Pathway for the Future of Education

Education Week - September 25, 2013