On March 26, Senators Chris Van Hollen (D-MD) and Pat Roberts (R-KS) and Representatives Jared Huffman (D-CA) S.866 and H.R. 1878) John Katko (R-NY), Joe Neguse (D-CO), David McKinley (R-WV), Dean Phillips (D-MN), Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA), Kurt Schrader (D-OR), and Glen Thompson (R-PA) introduced the IDEA Full Funding Act. More than 130 representatives have co-sponsored this legislation.
This bicameral, bipartisan legislation would establish a 10-year plan towards fully funding the federal share of investments in the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act. The current federal share is less than 15 percent, even though Congress originally promised to fund 40 percent of the cost of educating students with disabilities in 1975.
NSBA and other education groups have expressed strong support for the IDEA Full Funding Act and urges swift passage of this legislation along with the commensurate appropriations.“This legislation will establish a clear path towards fully achieving the federal share of resources needed to address the unique needs of almost seven million students with disabilities,” said Thomas J. Gentzel, Executive Director and CEO of the National School Boards Association. “Full funding and modernization of IDEA is one of NSBA’s top priorities to help ensure our country’s students with disabilities receive the access and supports they need to succeed as productive, contributing, engaging members of society.”
The IDEA Full Funding Act will authorize a course for a stronger federal commitment to address equity in education and support local innovations, such as those for early learning and interventions, special educator teams and student transitions–all of which are essential to effectively serving students with disabilities and their families.”
Through the “It’s Time for a Great IDEA!” advocacy campaign, NSBA is highlighting the critical need for the federal government to fulfill a long overdue promise to provide equal access to public education for all children in the United States.