Commentary

Trump education budget lays bare his party’s antipathy towards public schools

President Donald Trump issued his budget proposal earlier this month continuing the trend in divestment in universal public education. If enacted, Trump’s budget would slash federal education spending by 12 percent, eliminating funding for 29 education programs. A full list of the programs slated for elimination (as first reported by Education Week) can be found below:

The three largest programs facing elimination are Title II teacher development grants ($2.1 billion), Title IV grants for academic enrichment ($1.2 billion), and after-school aid ($1.2 billion). Combined, these cuts would cut federal funding by nearly $119 million in North Carolina.

The elimination of Title IV funding would leave North Carolina schools without any dedicated funding for professional development. The General Assembly already eliminated state funding for professional development in 2011, despite evidence that professional development positively impacts teacher retention and student achievement.

Similarly, the elimination of federal funding for after-school programs would have detrimental impacts on children. Students attending after-school programs demonstrate improved school attendance, behavior, and achievement.

The budget proposal also includes a $5 billion federal tax credit for contributions to private-school scholarships. The proposal would further drain resources from public schools and subsidize discrimination on the basis of religion and sexual identity. It would also lead students to transfer to low-quality private schools with dismal results.

Sadly, Trump’s anti-education budget proposal reflects a political playbook borrowed from North Carolina:

  1. Enact massive tax cuts benefiting corporations and the wealthy
  2. Starve schools of necessary resources
  3. Pursue failed privatization schemes that ignore the real issues faced by North Carolina students

It remains to be seen whether Trump’s proposal will gain any traction in Congress. But his detrimental, anti-school priorities have become far too familiar to those of us in North Carolina.

Check Also

Senate education budget is a dereliction of duty

For years, North Carolina’s public schools were a ...

Top Stories from NCPW

  • News
  • Commentary

As lawmakers work to negotiate a final state budget by the end of the month, the ongoing conflict be [...]

The state Charter School Advisory Board (CSAB) on Monday unanimously stood by its approval of two ch [...]

WASHINGTON – North Carolina Sen. Thom Tillis declared his opposition last week to one of President T [...]

This is the 74th day of the legislative session and members of the House and Senate face a deadline [...]

If, in this precise moment, you’re wondering where North Carolina’s multi-billion dollar budget is, [...]

The recent proposal from state Senate leaders for the next two-year state budget compromises North C [...]

At a recent Civitas Institute panel discussion, former state senator Joel Ford lamented that – becau [...]

In his recent “must read” book on the history of Jim Crow and how it shaped (and was itself shaped) [...]