Fate of the Javits program funding does not hang in the balance

I am delighted to be able to say that it is a virtual certainty that the Javits Gifted and Talented Students program will receive $12 million in fiscal year 2017, the same amount as was allotted in 2016. 

Today, the House Appropriations Committee began slogging its way through the mark-up of the fiscal year 2017 Labor/HHS/Education bill, which funds the agencies and the programs each agency oversees, including the $12 million for the Javits program. 

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The Senate Appropriations Committee approved $12 million on June 9 for the Javits program in its version of the same bill.  Although a conference committee will work out the differences between the House and Senate bills over the next several months, this is the first time in many years that the fate of the Javits program does not hang in the balance until the last possible moment in the appropriations process. 

Credit goes to all the advocates who regularly contact their Members of Congress to urge continued funding as well as to gifted education supporters on the appropriations committees, such as Representative Rosa DeLauro (CT-3) and Senator Barbara Mikulski (MD), who have made special efforts to support this program.  As the field continues to look for ways to ensure that gifted education programs and services reflect the full diversity of the district, the Javits program provides research-based strategies for identifying and serving children who often have been overlooked for these programs. 

Although speaking generally about federal education spending priorities, Rep. DeLauro, Ranking Minority Member of the Labor/HHS/Education Appropriations Subcommittee, could have been describing a primary goal for the Javits program when she said, “The programs… level the playing field for low-income children.”