Disability Rights Advocates Outline Federal Education Spending Priorities

cork board background with school supplies and the words Special Education spelled out

by Andy Jones
July 2, 2017

In a letter to the leading Congressional representatives and senators on June 28, the National Disability Rights Network and nearly three dozen disability rights advocates urged Congress to reject the education funding proposals in President Trump's proposed budget, and increase services for students with disabilities.

“As you work to finalize the FY 2018 appropriations bill for the Departments of Labor, Health and Human Services, Education and Related Agencies, the Consortium for Citizens with Disabilities (CCD) Education Task Force writes to urge you to support the highest possible spending levels for programs that support America’s 6 million children and youth with disabilities and the educators who work on their behalf,” the CCD wrote in the letter.

CCD called for a $1 billion increase in funding under Part B of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, the nation’s primarily governing special education law. It also urged increased funding for early childhood education and other early intervention services.

Other priorities for the CCD include increased technology access, civil rights enforcement and transition programs for students pursuing higher education.

“Providing students with disabilities inclusive educational opportunities with high expectations and access to rigorous coursework is directly linked to better employment outcomes, higher wages and lower unemployment that provide opportunities for true community integration,” the letter states.

The full letter can be read here [PDF].

Disability Rights Washington is the designated protection and advocacy agency in Washington and a member of the National Disability Rights Network.