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IDEA Money Watch tracks the $13.8 billion in annual Federal funds provided to states and local school districts for special education through three Federal grant programs: Part B Section 611 (children ages 3-21) and Section 619 (children ages 3-5) and Part C (infants and toddlers). The distribution of these funds to states in FY 2019 and estimated distributions for FY 2020 and FY 2021 are available here (PDF, 6 pgs).

---> Follow the Federal appropriations process for IDEA for FY 2022 <----


July 29, 2021: 117th Congress> U.S. House of Representatives passes a package of seven 2022 appropriations bills including funding for the U.S. Dept. of Education which includes historic increases for Special Education. Details on the funding for Special Education here.

July 1, 2021: U.S. Dept. of Ed announces release of $3 billion supplemental grants to states included in the American Rescue Plan and a FACT SHEET describing how IDEA funds within ARP can be used by states

June 16, 2021: 117th Congress> U.S. Senate holds hearing on the administration's FY 2022 budget request for the Dept. of Education. Ed Secy Miguel Cardona testified. Archive available here

May 28, 2021: White House releases full budget request for FY 2022 including significant increases for special education. Read about it here

May 5, 2021: 117th Congress> U.S. House of Representatives hearing on the administration's FY 22 budget request for the Dept. of Education. Ed Secy Miguel Cardona testified. Archive available here.

April 26, 2021: The Council of Parent Attorneys & Advocates releases new resource guide, The American Rescue Plan: Advocating for Students with Disabilities, which provides concrete ways ARP ESSER funds can be targeted to support students with disabilities. Get it here.

April 13, 2021: US ED's Office of Special Education Programs has released estimated state allocations for the IDEA funds provided in the American Rescue Plan Act. Get them here

April 9, 2021: President Biden releases FY 2022 topline budget request which includes $15.5 billion for IDEA PreK-12 grants to states and $732 million for IDEA Part C grants for infants and toddlers. Read all about it here

April 1, 2021: This new report lays out three critical moves state policymakers can make to maintain special education funding and bolster performance. Read it here.

March 11, 2021: 117th Congress> Congress has passed and the President has signed into law the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021. It includes $122.8 billion for K-12 education and an additional $3 billion for the IDEA. Read all about it here.

February 10, 2021: U.S. Dept. of Education releases new report on maintenance of effort (MOE) compliance across local school districts in states for the 2018-2019 school year. Details are here.

February 5, 2021: 117th Congress> Reintroduction of legislation to support students with disabilities, The Supporting Children with Disabilities During COVID-19 Act, to provide emergency supplemental funding for IDEA. Details are here.

January 29, 2021: IDEA funding gaps by state for FY 2020 released! Shortfall to states is a whopping $23.6 billion. Details are here

January 27, 2021: 117th Congress> U.S. Senator Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.) and U.S. Representative Susie Lee (D-Nev.) announced the reintroduction of the Keep Our Promise to America’s Children and Teachers (PACT) Act, legislation to put Congress on a fiscally-responsible path to fully fund Title I and the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) on a mandatory basis. Read more here

January 8, 2021: The Consolidated Appropriations Act provides $81.9 billion for a Education Stabilization Fund - 4 times the amount provided in the CARES Act passed in March 2020. Get details on the fund, how funds can be spent and how to make sure students with disabilities are included

December 22, 2020: 116th Congress> Congress passed the Consolidated Appropriations Act (PL 116-260) to fund the government for Fiscal Year 2021 (Oct 1, 2020 - Sept 30, 2021). IDEA received a small increase over FY 2020. Details are here

September 10, 2020: The U.S. Education Department is providing states a one-year extension to spend their FFY 2018 IDEA Part C funds. The extension is only available to states where the State Educational Agency is the Part C Lead Agency (see list here). Details about the extension are available here

July 20, 2020: The Committee for Education Funding has released its analysis of the 2021 Education Budget. It provides a comprehensive picture of all national education programs, each program’s purpose, detailed funding history, and the impact of the president’s FY 2021 budget. IDEA programs are covered on pages 84-91. Download the CEF 2021 Budget Analysis

July 13, 2020: House Committee on Appropriations approves FY 2021 Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies bill. It includes $13 billion for IDEA grants to states. Bill summary is here

June 8, 2020: The U.S. Education Department is providing states a one-year extension to spend their FFY 2018 IDEA Part B funds. Read our blog about it

May 28, 2020: Education groups send letter to Congress asking for flexibility in IDEA LEA MOE rules. Read our blog about it

May 26, 2020: NPR reports on "A Looming Financial Meltdown For America's Schools."

May 12, 2020: U.S. House of Representatives passes the HEROES Act which includes $60 billion for K-12 school districts to help them address the coronavirus pandemic

April 22, 2020: 116th Congress> The CARES Act provides $30.75 billion for an Education Stabilization Fund. Find out how these funds can be used to serve students with disabilities

April 6, 2020: FutureEd reports on "What Congressional Covid Funding Means for K-12 Schools," including State-by-State Education Stabilization Fund Amounts. Read it here.

June 25, 2019: National Education Policy Center's new report, Funding Special Education: Charting a Path that Confronts Complexity and Crafts Coherence, addresses areas of incoherence in funding of special education, providing guidelines for federal policymakers to establish a national policy framework. Get it here.

IDEA Money Watch is a project of The Advocacy Institute.