Today marks the beginning of nine years of significant cuts in federal spending—including, unfortunately, cuts to programs that serve disadvantaged children and students with learning disabilities. These cuts, which are happening under a process called "sequestration," are the result of Congress and the Administration failing to agree on how to cut $1.2 trillion in federal spending, as required by law. Rather than varied, specific cuts to individual programs, the sequester cuts nearly all federal programs by the same amount, regardless of how effective or ineffective the programs might be. These cuts, for the most part, will likely begin to be felt by schools at the beginning of the next school year.
Programs like IDEA, which provides resources to help educate students with disabilities, will be cut by approximately 5 percent, or nearly $600 million, this year alone. Similarly, a program like Title I, which helps schools educate disadvantaged students, will be cut by over $700 million this year alone. These cuts will lead to fewer teachers serving these students and longer waits for students with disabilities to be evaluated and receive services. Moving forward, parents should do their best to be especially vigilant when dealing with the teachers and personnel at their child's school to ensure that the cuts are not reducing services for their children in particular or used as an excuse to reduce services.
Laura Kaloi, Public Policy Director of NCLD, talked about the impact these cuts will have on children with LD. If you missed this Huff Post Live chat, you can watch below.
Thank you for all of your support as we’ve rallied to put a stop to these cuts. We’ll keep you updated if there are any changes, for instance, if new negotiations come to the table in Congress.