Happy New Year!
FY 2023 budget: The federal government doesn’t even have a budget finalized for the current (2022) fiscal year, but last month was the time to make suggestions for new or innovative programs to be included in the President’s Budget for the next fiscal year, 2023. We joined in several recommendations, including a joint letter with the National Housing Law Project urging HUD to increase funding for tenant organizations in HUD programs (including funds for Housing Choice Voucher organizing). At the Department of Education, we submitted suggestions with members of a housing-schools working group on ways that the Department could fund meaningful engagement with HUD and between state and local housing and education agencies.
Secretary Cardona’s final discretionary grant priorities include school diversity and interagency collaboration: Last month, the Department of Education released the “Final Priorities and Definitions—Secretary’s Supplemental Priorities and Definitions for Discretionary Grants Programs” (86 Fed Reg 70612), which will be used to guide selection priorities in future grant competitions. The priorities cover 6 broad categories (COVID, Equity, Diverse Workforce, Student Social-Emotional needs, Post-Secondary Access, and “Cross-Agency Coordination and Community Engagement to Advance Systemic Change”). Issues relating to diversity and inclusion are highlighted throughout the priorities, but the most pointed priorities are spelled out in the Equity section, which calls for “project[s] designed to promote education equity and adequacy in resources for underserved students…[t]hat examines the sources of inequity and inadequacy” through various means including “more equitable and adequate approaches to school funding,” high quality, inclusive early learning, improved learning environments for multilingual learners, and “increasing student racial or socioeconomic diversity” through a variety of means, including interdistrict transfers, and changes to school assignment and admissions policies. The priorities also include multiple references to cross-agency collaboration with housing and transportation agencies. It remains to be seen how the priorities will be used in specific grant programs, but the Secretary’s announced priorities are a good start. We had earlier joined the National Coalition on School Diversity (NCSD) in comments on the Secretary’s draft priorities.
PRRAC is hiring – help us find the right person to join our team! See our posting for a Director of State and Local Engagement.