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Steven A. Greenburg, Education Law
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Bill regarding IDEA funding before the U.S. House

Many different decisions can have significant impacts on California special needs students. This includes what decisions the parents of such students make when issues come up related to their child’s education. It also includes the choices schools in the state make regarding their special education programs. It further includes what actions government bodies in the state opt to take when it comes to special education policy.

Additionally, there are certain federal government decisions that can be very impactful in this regard. This includes what the federal government decides to do in relation to special education funding. What choices the federal government makes regarding such funding can have major impacts on how much in resources special education programs ultimately receive. This, in turn, could have implications regarding the effectiveness of such programs.

Recently, a bill regarding such funding was introduced in the U.S. House. The bill would increase federal funding related to the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act. The increase would occur incrementally over a period of 10 years. The aim of the increase is to, by the end of this 10-year period, get federal IDEA funding up to the level the federal government initially promised when IDEA was passed. Current funding levels are well below this level.

Reportedly, the bill enjoys partisan support. However, similar bills have been brought in the past, but have failed to make the jump into becoming law. Do you think this bill will end up going the same route, or do you think it will be passed? How big of an impact do you think the federal funding increases proposed by the bill would have on special education, generally, here in California if they were to ultimately occur?

Source: Disability Scoop, “Lawmakers Call For Full Funding Of IDEA,” Shaun Heasley, June 19, 2017

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