Senate Adds Education Funds For the Poor, Handicapped
Washington--The Senate last week increased the 1982 budget for federal education programs--those aiding handicapped and disadvantaged children for the coming school year--in an appropriation bill that included funds for several government agencies.
The bill, which has already passed in the House, would add $148 million to the Chapter I program, formerly Title I, for disadvantaged children.
The addition would bring the program's budget for the current fiscal year to $2.89 billion.
For the education of handicapped children, the measure, HR6863, provided a $25.6-million increase. The program's budget would rise to $1.4 billion.
The bill also contains supplemental funds for higher-education programs, including $140 million for Pell Grants and $29 million for Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants.
Altogether, the additional funds would increase the Education Department's budget for the coming school year from approximately $14.3 billion to $14.6 billion.
Because the bill contains billions of dollars in supplemental funds for these and other domestic programs, Congressional aides said there was some concern that President Reagan would veto the bill. He vetoed a previous supplemental bill that the Congress passed in June.
Ensure Bill's Enactment
But the aides said members of Congress had included funds for programs the President supports, such as the Administration's foreign-assistance program for countries in Latin America and in the Caribbean, to ensure the bill's enactment.
If the bill does become law, its additional funds are expected to help ease the financial burden on the states that is expected to result from a dispute between state education officials and Secretary of Education Terrel H. Bell over the basis for the allocation of Chapter I funds to the states. (See story on this page.)
The additional $148 million in the appropriation bill would give each state the higher of the amounts possible under two sets of census data that are in dispute.
The Chapter I money was originally added to the bill by the House Committee on Education and Labor last month, at the urging of state education officials.
Vol. 01, Issue 40