What Trump’s education budget proposal means for students and …

President Donald Trump’s education budget could chop $9.2 billion from programs that promote early learning, arts education, college work-study, and access to federal education grants and loans, pending congressional approval.

The proposed legislation aims to increase school choice by expanding charter school and voucher funding by $400 million and pours $1 billion into an incentive grant program for school districts that allow school choice – a priority investment in a plan championed by President Trump and Education Secretary Betsy DeVos. The budget proposal, which was released May 23 and would result in a 13.5% decrease in Department of Education funding, was first reported by The Washington Post.

But with cuts to federal financial aid programs like the Perkins loans and Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (SEOG), federal work-study, and after-school care, many feel as if the new budget is anything but an investment in the future.

“This budget is grossly out of step with the needs of young people and the priorities of most members of Congress,” says Reid Setzer, director of government affairs for the nationwide young adult education and advocacy group, Young Invincibles. “It fails to invest in young people and the future of our country by slashing opportunities for young adults to gain skills through education, sustain themselves and their families, and contribute to our workforce.”

The end of Public Service Loan Forgiveness?

While the budget is expected to be revised as it moves through Congress, the suggested cuts and restructured student loan repayment plans are frightening to low-income families and students who have planned their economic and educational futures on government assistance.

Take the Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) program, for example: After 10 years of monthly payments while working in public service or for a nonprofit, remaining student debt will disappear. The proposed budget would end the program, cutting $859 million.

Fortunately, borrowers who are already enrolled in PSLF will be grandfathered in, meaning they will still be eligible for loan forgiveness even after the program ends. The changes would apply to loans that originated after July 1, 2018.

Amanda Aubrey, a staff attorney at Legal Action of Wisconsin, is relying on the government-promised freedom from thousands of dollars of debt. Aubrey, 38, says she planned her career around eligibility and calls the sudden uncertainty of that relief the “bait-and-switch of a lifetime.” She graduated from the University of the District of Columbia David A. Clarke School of Law in 2013.

“Without it, it’s unlikely I will ever be able to own my own home, or even discharge more than half the debt on my own,” says Aubrey. “My retirement will likely get pushed back until I’m 75, because the money I might otherwise have saved would have been required for loan repayment.”

While he recognizes that the Trump administration has suggested a system of grandfathering for current PSLF enrollees, Setzer says it’s not guaranteed, and even if it was, the incentive for individuals seeking public servant jobs could vanish with the dismantling of the program.

Aubrey says the potential diminishing number of public servants also could mean an alarming lack of services for those who need them most.

“Having the PSLF as an option made it possible to follow the path I wanted to follow, rather than having to pursue a path that would make enough money to pay back the loans,” Aubrey says. “Low-income clients desperately need legal representation, and low-paying jobs for attorneys are usually the only prayer such clients have at getting the help they need. Eliminating the PSLF takes away that possibility, for legal, medical, and many other professionals.”

What it means for families

The budget’s impacts could be felt far earlier than college and professional careers. Government-funded after-school care is in jeopardy in the proposed budget.

The plan proposes cutting $1.2 billion from government-funded after-school and summer programs.

“(Lack of after-school care) would put a strain on the family, as far as the wife and myself having to rush home to make sure the kids are taken care of,” says Robert Chatmon, a father of three in Athens, Ga. “If they’re at after-school, you have trained people who are there that are willing to look after them, take care of them – give them that extra support that they need.”

The fear of losing funding for after-school care looms large, as the budget’s targeted programs primarily assist poor families.

“You end up hurting people who depend on the very program you’re cutting,” Chatmon says.

What programs are being cut

Here are some key suggested cuts in the proposed education budget:

●     $2.3 billion from programs that provide teacher training and class-size reduction

●     $1.2 billion from government-funded after-school and summer programs

●     $1 billion from federal loans for disadvantaged students, including Perkins loans

●     $490 million – 50% – from federal work-study programs

In addition, no money would be allocated for certain grants that help to fund mental health services, anti-bullying campaigns, advanced placement, and physical education courses.

What’s next

The president’s May 23 budget proposal is one step of five in signing the budget for the next fiscal year – beginning Oct. 1 – into law.

The next step – congressional review and resolution – requires the House and Senate budget committees to decide and vote on spending limits for the overall budget.

Then the appropriations committees in the House and Senate will allocate exact funding for all discretionary programs.

The House and Senate will then debate and vote on the changes made to funding requests for each of the appropriations committees.

The president must then sign into law each of the 12 appropriation bills in the 2018 budget as they are approved by Congress.

While the Trump administration has requested large and far-reaching cuts to federal education spending, the specific dollar amounts are likely to change, and it is possible that some of the proposed reductions and expansions will not pass through Congress by the October deadline. 

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Goose Creek CISD Education Foundation patrol awards grants …

With the spirit and noise of a holiday parade, the Goose Creek CISD Education Foundation marched down the halls of district schools two mornings in April to award 77 grants to deserving educators to enhance classroom instruction. Accompanied by Robert E. Lee High School drum line members; REL, Goose Creek Memorial High School and Ross S. Sterling High School cheerleaders as well as some REL Celebrities, Education Foundation members and district administrators boarded yellow school buses carrying large checks to present to grant winners. 

Since the inception of the Goose Creek CISD Education Foundation in 2009, the organization has awarded more than $830,000 to teachers searching for ways to fund innovative ideas to benefit their students. Thanks to generous donors in the community as well as GCCISD staff members, who donate through the payroll deduction program, this marked the eighth year the Grant Surprise Patrol has delivered these grants. 

“Our teachers are creative in their methods and strategies, and it is often difficult for them to obtain the necessary resources to enhance their students’ educational experiences,” said Randal O’Brien, Goose Creek CISD superintendent. “That’s why we at Goose Creek CISD appreciate the Education Foundation so much. The Goose Creek CISD Education Foundation believes that schools are critical to the success of a community, and its members have committed to giving time and effort to funding creative educational programs in our district.” 

Janet Sennet, a teacher at Highlands Elementary, was pleased to see the group stop at her classroom to present her with $500 for her grant “The Big Bank” to enhance financial literacy. She will use the money to construct a bank and a store, and students will select a career.

“They will earn a bi-weekly salary, make a household budget and save 10 percent of their earnings. Also, students will be able to buy goods from the store,” said Sennet. “They will select a charity to which they will donate. Students will operate the Big Bank just like a real financial institution. I will provide them with checks, debit/credit cards and money. The students will be required to borrow money from the bank to understand how interest works.”

To enrich the science curriculum at Horace Mann Junior School, Susan Dagley submitted her grant “KABOOM! Chemistry Demos” in the amount of $1,270. The funds she received from the Goose Creek CISD Education Foundation will allow the Outreach program from The Museum of Natural Science to demonstrate chemical reactions for the entire student body.

“One of our science campus goals is to incorporate more hands-on activities during science class. Students would witness demonstrations of combustion, color changes, polymers and watching incredible effects of liquid nitrogen. These are demonstrations that we normally are unable to do due to lack of resources,” Dagley said. 

Another happy grant winner was Kathryn Aguilar from IMPACT Early College High School, who received a $2,000 grant for materials for her forensics class. 

“Without the grant, we couldn’t do everything we want to do in the class. It takes materials to make an interesting forensics class. We will look for trace evidence, set up crime scenes and do more with serology,” said Aguilar. “We send real DNA samples to a National Geographic program, and students present the results of the analysis of their own DNA.”

The grants are awarded to teachers at all different levels for various subjects and for a diverse range of projects. Some teachers, like Linda LeDay at Dr. Antonio Bañuelos Elementary, have found that if they have creative ideas, they can receive more than one grant, but only one per year.

“Knowing that these innovative teaching grants are at work in Goose Creek CISD classrooms every day is so rewarding,” said Kathy Clausen, president of the Education Foundation. “The Education Foundation is extremely grateful to our donors for making this possible.”

The mission of the Goose Creek CISD Education foundation is to partner with the community to provide resources to enrich teaching, inspire learning and provide opportunities for excellence in education for all students in the Goose Creek Consolidated Independent School District. Goals include involving the community in assuring a quality education for the leaders and workers of tomorrow, supporting staff for innovative efforts, recognizing staff for exemplary teaching and encouraging all students to work at their highest potential. 

If you would like to donate to the GCCISD Education Foundation, please go online to gccisd.net or call 281-707-3629.

Secretary DeVos Announces Reconsideration of Upward Bound Applications

Today, U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos announced the Department will read and score applications for the Upward Bound grant program that were deemed ineligible under technical formatting rules issued by the previous Administration. The flexibility to consider these applications was made possible by the 2017 Omnibus spending bill.

After announcing the change at today’s House Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education hearing, Secretary DeVos issued the following statement:

“With the 2017 Omnibus spending bill, Congress provided us with the flexibility to review all of the applications previously deemed ineligible due to technical formatting requirements. Going forward, I have directed all Department staff to allow flexibility on formatting and other technical elements on all grant applications. Bureaucratic red tape should never get in the way of helping students.”

Northside Neighborhood House Receives $7,000 Grant To Support …

This week, the Dollar General Literacy Foundation awarded Northside Neighborhood House a $7,000 grant to support adult literacy and education.  This local grant award is part of more than $7.5 million in grants awarded to nearly 900 schools, nonprofits and organizations across the 44 states that Dollar General serves.

“We are thrilled to receive funding from the Dollar General Literacy Foundation to support our Adult Education Program, “ said Brianne Lalor, chief development officer for the Northside Neighborhood House. “We started this program in 2007 because many of our clients were in need of Adult Education and wanted to have access to more opportunities by earning their high school equivalency degree. We have seen many lives transformed through this program.”  

Students meet three days a week at the NNH main office and benefit from one on one tutoring from the adult education director and faithful volunteers (including retired educators and current education majors). Through the program, students can also access practice materials online in case they can’t make it in for class in person.  The NNH partners with Tennessee College of Applied Technology to deliver programming.   

“Dollar General is excited to provide these organizations with funding to support literacy and education throughout the 44 states we serve,” said Todd Vasos, Dollar General’s CEO.  “Providing these grants and supporting the communities we call home reflects our mission of Serving Others and it’s rewarding to see the impact these funds have.” 

The Dollar General Literacy Foundation supports initiatives that help others improve their lives through literacy and education. Since its inception in 1993, the Dollar General Literacy Foundation has awarded more than $135 million in grants to nonprofit organizations; helping more than 8.6 million individuals take their first steps toward literacy or continued education. 

Northside Neighborhood House Receives $7,000 Grant To Support …

This week, the Dollar General Literacy Foundation awarded Northside Neighborhood House a $7,000 grant to support adult literacy and education.  This local grant award is part of more than $7.5 million in grants awarded to nearly 900 schools, nonprofits and organizations across the 44 states that Dollar General serves.

“We are thrilled to receive funding from the Dollar General Literacy Foundation to support our Adult Education Program, “ said Brianne Lalor, chief development officer for the Northside Neighborhood House. “We started this program in 2007 because many of our clients were in need of Adult Education and wanted to have access to more opportunities by earning their high school equivalency degree. We have seen many lives transformed through this program.”  

Students meet three days a week at the NNH main office and benefit from one on one tutoring from the adult education director and faithful volunteers (including retired educators and current education majors). Through the program, students can also access practice materials online in case they can’t make it in for class in person.  The NNH partners with Tennessee College of Applied Technology to deliver programming.   

“Dollar General is excited to provide these organizations with funding to support literacy and education throughout the 44 states we serve,” said Todd Vasos, Dollar General’s CEO.  “Providing these grants and supporting the communities we call home reflects our mission of Serving Others and it’s rewarding to see the impact these funds have.” 

The Dollar General Literacy Foundation supports initiatives that help others improve their lives through literacy and education. Since its inception in 1993, the Dollar General Literacy Foundation has awarded more than $135 million in grants to nonprofit organizations; helping more than 8.6 million individuals take their first steps toward literacy or continued education. 

DeVos to review rejected college prep grant applications

The U.S. Department of Education will reconsider awarding grants to dozens of programs that help low-income students prepare for college after their initial applications were rejected due to formatting errors such as not being double-spaced, a House subcommittee was told Wednesday.

Education Secretary Betsy DeVos was asked about the 77 rejected applications from universities and other organizations that administer Upward Bound programs as she testified before a House Appropriations subcommittee about her department’s budget.

“When we found out about the issue with regard to the formatting errors, it was after the competition was closed,” she said in response to the question by Republican Rep. Mike Simpson of Idaho. “We looked at all viable legal remedies to try to address it and did not find any.”

However, the agency can now reconsider those applications, because Congress included an additional $50 million in funding for such programs in a spending bill that will keep the federal government operating through September, DeVos said.

The rejection of the five-year grant applications drew bipartisan criticism and a request in the funding bill that the secretary use her authority to allow those programs to submit corrected applications.

DeVos issued a memo saying applications for education grants would no longer be rejected over formatting errors, but the department told congressional aides the rejected applications couldn’t be reconsidered.

The staff of Republican Rep. Warren Davidson of Ohio sent him a memo outlining a possible solution.

The memo, obtained by The Associated Press, suggested using the $50 million appropriation and requiring the reconsidered applications to score at least as high as the final approved application to avoid complaints by programs that might not receive funding.

On Monday, Davidson discussed the memo with Education Undersecretary James Manning and agency legal counsel.

“Today is a victory for commonsense government,” Davidson said in a statement Wednesday. “I am glad they are taking my recommendation and will give these schools an opportunity to be judged on their merits.”

More than 62,000 high school students around the country receive services through Upward Bound, which seeks to inspire low-income and first-generation and rural students to attend college.

The Education Department says 86 percent of Upward Bound students who graduated from high school in the spring of 2014 enrolled in college that fall.

The department issued $263 million in Upward Bound grants in fiscal year 2015.

The rejected applications were seeking a few hundred thousand dollars a year. Some of those programs have been in existence for up to 50 years.

The applications that were rejected due to formatting errors included those from University of Montana, the University of Maine at Presque Isle, Talladega College in Alabama and Whittenberg University in Ohio, according to a partial list compiled by Davidson’s office.

TOSCA-PIE grants presented – Gustine Press

Posted: Thursday, May 25, 2017 8:43 am

TOSCA-PIE grants presented

NEWMAN – The Orestimba Scholarship Community Association (TOSCA) awarded nearly $23,000 in Prien Innovative Education grants at its 24th annual scholarship banquet last Wednesday.

The grants are funded by a generous donation from the late Ernie Prien, earmarked for projects and purchases which enrich the education of students in the Newman-Crows Landing Unified School District.

The following grants were awarded this year:

· A $2,500 grant was awarded to Von Renner Elementary for the purchase of the First Tee program, which teaches young people life skills and character education through the game of golf. The program will be offered to 60 students in grades 3-5 in an after-school offering.

· Orestimba received a $7,400 grant to sponsor a “Careers in Ag Day” and to fund field trips for students to learn about the various career opportunities in agriculture.

· Hunt Elementary received a $4,454 grant to purchase the equipment and supplies required to establish two video production studio stations. Stations will be used by fourth-grade teachers to produce their own video productions. Those teachers will in turn assist those in the third and fifth grade who want to make use of the studios.

· A $5,381 grant was awarded to Von Renner Elementary for the purchase of a Rig-A-Ma-Jig building kid and Simple Machines add-on kit to support STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics) activities at the school.

· A $3,050 grant was awarded to Orestimba High to purchase “studies in light” equipment such as telescopes and spectrographs for use in science courses.

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RCTC receives grants from IBM | Education | postbulletin.com – Post

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Education Secretary Betsy DeVos will reconsider Upward Bound grant applications

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DeVos to review rejected college prep grant applications

The U.S. Department of Education will reconsider awarding grants to dozens of programs that help low-income students prepare for college after their initial applications were rejected due to formatting errors such as not being double-spaced, a House subcommittee was told Wednesday.

Education Secretary Betsy DeVos was asked about the 77 rejected applications from universities and other organizations that administer Upward Bound programs as she testified before a House Appropriations subcommittee about her department’s budget.

“When we found out about the issue with regard to the formatting errors, it was after the competition was closed,” she said in response to the question by Republican Rep. Mike Simpson of Idaho. “We looked at all viable legal remedies to try to address it and did not find any.”

However, the agency can now reconsider those applications, because Congress included an additional $50 million in funding for such programs in a spending bill that will keep the federal government operating through September, DeVos said.

The rejection of the five-year grant applications drew bipartisan criticism and a request in the funding bill that the secretary use her authority to allow those programs to submit corrected applications.

DeVos issued a memo saying applications for education grants would no longer be rejected over formatting errors, but the department told congressional aides the rejected applications couldn’t be reconsidered.

The staff of Republican Rep. Warren Davidson of Ohio sent him a memo outlining a possible solution.

The memo, obtained by The Associated Press, suggested using the $50 million appropriation and requiring the reconsidered applications to score at least as high as the final approved application to avoid complaints by programs that might not receive funding.

On Monday, Davidson discussed the memo with Education Undersecretary James Manning and agency legal counsel.

“Today is a victory for commonsense government,” Davidson said in a statement Wednesday. “I am glad they are taking my recommendation and will give these schools an opportunity to be judged on their merits.”

More than 62,000 high school students around the country receive services through Upward Bound, which seeks to inspire low-income and first-generation and rural students to attend college.

The Education Department says 86 percent of Upward Bound students who graduated from high school in the spring of 2014 enrolled in college that fall.

The department issued $263 million in Upward Bound grants in fiscal year 2015.

The rejected applications were seeking a few hundred thousand dollars a year. Some of those programs have been in existence for up to 50 years.

The applications that were rejected due to formatting errors included those from University of Montana, the University of Maine at Presque Isle, Talladega College in Alabama and Whittenberg University in Ohio, according to a partial list compiled by Davidson’s office.