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BEA Home PageNEA Education Insider
A weekly review of progress on the Quality Public Schools Agenda and other
legislation that impacts our students, classrooms, and public education.March 7, 2003
Will Congress do the right thing?
NEA is spearheading an appeal to Congress for $50 billion in state fiscal relief. Last week NEA President Reg Weaver asked members' help in urging Congress to do the right thing by our states.
Why? Let's not derail progress! States face the worst budget crisis since World War II. School terms are being cut short; layoff notices issued; and Portland teachers working without pay to protect the school term for their students. Failure to provide states and communities immediate fiscal relief in this financial crisis threatens the gains made by students and public schools the last several years and delays any economic recovery.
Federal funding for federal mandates is a responsibility! Congress must provide the resources necessary to fund the significant new mandates under the new ESEA ['No Child Left Behind Act']. The actual funding falls $11 billion short of the amount promised in the law. This simply sets schools and states up for failure. That is unacceptable.
Congress must meet its commitment to fund 40 percent of special education costs (IDEA). The actual funding is less than half the amount promised. The result: ALL students are underserved as states scramble to make up the shortfall.
This week, the House of Representatives and the Senate Budget Committees begin drafting the spending blueprint or 'Budget Resolution' for the budget year that begins October 1, 2003. Congress' spending plan must help fill the gapping holes in state budgets.
Our students are hurting from budget deficits and cutbacks every day. When we shortchange them, we shortchange our future.
Can President Weaver count on your help so that our children are not shortchanged?
Send a message to Congress!
- If your Representative or Senator is on the Budget Committee, tell him or her: "Our states need help in this time of financial crisis to keep America secure. "
- If your Representative or Senator is not on the Budget Committee, ask him or her to urge the Budget Committee to help our states.
Budget Committee Members
STATE/CD PARTY COMMITTEE MEMBER AL-CD1
1201 16th Street, NW
Washington, DC 20036
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