On October 20, the Department of Education (ED) released its new non-binding guidance on TitleIV in the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). Title IV creates a new block grant that provides a unique opportunity for school leaders to try and acquire more funding for their school. We need your help to advocate for funding for Title IV.
Under the revised Title IV guidance, the grant will provide flexibility so that schools can spend the dollars where they need it most, as long as that usage falls into one of these areas:
- Helping provide students with a well-rounded education. This can be done through the promotion of STEM, college career counseling, music or arts classes, and a variety of other ways.
- Supporting a safe and healthy school environment. For example, by providing school mental health services, forming drug and violence prevention programs, and many more.
- Supporting the effective use of technology. This area can be used for the professional development of principals and their staff, as well as a number of other uses.
Despite being authorized at $1.65 billion within ESSA, the block grant is facing significant funding barriers from Congress. The Senate’s proposal only allocates $300 million for the block grant while the House’s allocation would provide $1 billion, both falling far short of the authorized level. If underfunded, school districts would be prevented from investing in meaningful areas of education and will be faced with the unnecessarily difficult choice of funding some programs over others.
With the election less than three weeks away, it is more important than ever that those running for reelection hear from their constituents. That is why we are asking you to reach out to your Congressperson and Senators today to urge them to negotiate a funding package that funds Title IV, Part A at no less than $1.65 billion for FY 2017.
Then, consider pushing the message out on social media as well. The main hashtag being used for this issue is #MoreTitleIV. Below are some sample tweets that can help get you started:
- #MoreTitleIV funding means greater flexibility and more meaningful investments for local school districts! #ESSA
- #MoreTitleIV funding provides schools the ability to give students a more complete, well rounded education .@[Senator or Representative] #ESSA
- Every school would benefit from a fully funded Title IV, A grant, without it districts are forced to choose one program over another. #MoreTitleIV .@[Senator or Representative] #ESSA