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Congress stands up for children and families in 2018 budget

After a series of short-term budget deals to keep the federal government open, Congress passed a final spending bill for Fiscal Year 2018 on March 23 that increases funding for several programs supporting children and families.

Full-Service Community Schools received a 75% increase over FY 2017, earning $17.5 million (vs. $10 million in FY 2017). This will allow 15 more communities to apply for and receive the 5-year grant that helps to seed and sustain community schools. The Coalition thanks Congress and our champions on the appropriations committees for increasing funding, and encourages advocates to thank their members of Congress as well.

Other programs that support children and families received increases or maintained level funding from FY 2017, which are listed below.

While these increases are a win for children and families, we ask you to stay vigilant and advocate to maintain these funding levels for FY 2019 which begins on October 1. President Trump’s proposed budget for FY 2019 eliminates several of these programs and while Congress has rejected these eliminations recently, we must continue to reach out to our members of Congress and urge them to protect these and other programs that support children and youth.

·         21st Century Community Learning Centers: $20 million above the FY2017 level, increasing available funding to $1.21 billion. This increase will make programs available for 20,000 of the 19.4 million students currently waiting for access.

- Title I of Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA): $15.76 billion, a $300 million increase above FY2016. Title I funds can be used to support school improvement for low-income students including paying for a coordinator.
- Title IV Part A of ESSA, Student Support Academic Enrichment Grants: $1.1 billion, a $700 million increase over fiscal year 2017, which will flow by formula to states and districts.  These grants can be used to support safe and healthy students, a well-rounded education, and improve technology. ESSA explicitly references the role of a coordinator as an eligible use of funding.
- Title II of ESSA: $2.056 billion, level with last year, which supports teacher/educator training and professional development.
- Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS): AmeriCorps State and National Grants were funded at $412.010 million, an increase of $25 million. AmeriCorps and VISTA members are often placed in community schools to provide academic and out of school time support.
- Youth Mentoring Initiative: $94 million increased by $14 million from FY2017. These grants funds support mentoring initiatives for young people in and out of school.
- Perkins/Career Technical Education: Funded at $1.193 billion, an increase of $75 million, to support older youth career and workforce readiness education. 
- Opioid Abuse Treatment and Reduction: $1 billion in new funding for grants to States and Indian tribes to address the opioid epidemic. $476 million at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to support prevention activities at the national, state, and local level. At least $130 million for the Rural Communities Opioid Response program.?

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