Towards the end of May 2017, President Trump released his budget and, in the process, has confirmed educators’ fears about how bad the spending blueprint is for students, public schools, and working families.
You can check out the plan in its entirety, but if you’re short on time, here’s a quick rundown of what’s in the Trump-DeVos budget:
- Cuts the federal investment in education programs in FY2018 by 13.6 percent;
- Cuts $10.6 billion in federal education initiatives overall;
- Eliminates 22 education programs;
- Cuts $1.2 billion from after-school programs;
- Cuts $27 million from arts education;
- Cuts IDEA (special education funding) by $133 million;
- Cuts $2.1 billion from funding to reduce class sizes (which is key for providing the one-on-one attention students need to succeed) and support professional development for educators; and
- More than $700 million in cuts to college loans for low-income students.
As if that wasn’t bad enough, President Trump and education secretary Betsy DeVos want to take more scarce resources away from our public schools – the same public schools that provide MSU with an overwhelming majority of our student body and where 90 percent of the nation’s children are enrolled – and funnel those funds into private and/or religious schools.
In an interview, our national union president (National Education Association), Lily Eskelsen Garcia, pointed out that the impact of the Trump budget extends beyond public education. It also targets Medicaid, Meals on Wheels, and those services aimed at providing a safety net for working families.
“These budget cuts will hurt every working family in America. And that’s why we have to call on Congress to reject the Trump budget,” said Garcia. “At the end of the day, the students and families most in need will pay the price because of the draconian cuts the Trump administration is proposing.”