IDEA Full Funding Act Introduced in House of Representatives

Written by Meghan Casey, Policy Research & Advocacy Associate | 5 years ago

A group of bipartisan members of Congress have introduced the IDEA Full Funding Act. Led by Jared Huffman (D-CA), Chris Van Hollen (D-MD), David McKinley (R-WV), Tim Walz (D-MN), Chris  Gibson (R-NY), and Dave Reichert (R-WA), this Act would provide much needed funding for students with disabilities in schools across the country.

“Forty years ago, Congress made a promise to the Nation, to students with disabilities and their families, and to educators to invest in special education. But that promise has gone unfulfilled. Today, I applaud the bipartisan leadership of Representatives Van Hollen, Huffman, Walz, Gibson, McKinley, and Reichert to fulfill this promise and provide children with disabilities and schools with the resources they need and deserve. Our parent community stands ready to support the IDEA Full Funding Act.”
—James H. Wendorf, Executive Director, National Center for Learning Disabilities

In 1975, Congress passed the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) to guarantee every child with disabilities the right to educational opportunity. Although the federal government pledged to pay 40 percent of the additional cost to educate IDEA-eligible students, it never lived up to that promise. Despite the number of students with disabilities under IDEA increasing by 25 percent in the past two decades, IDEA is currently funded at only 16 percent of the additional cost and the government is falling several billions of dollars short of its commitment. Due to recent education budget cuts at the state and local levels, it is increasingly difficult for schools to provide the services that children with disabilities need and are entitled to. The IDEA Full Funding Act would increase spending each year to meet our nation’s commitment to the 6 million children with disabilities and their families.

We strongly support the IDEA Full Funding Act and have fought in Washington, D.C., for federal investment in education. Join our list of parent advocates to help us push for the resources that children, teachers and schools need.