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President Obama's 2016 Budget Seeks to Expand Educational Opportunity for All Students

Posted on 02/06/2015

Budget FY2016

The Obama Administration released a fiscal year 2016 budget External link opens in new window or tab on February 2 that includes key investments to expand high-quality early learning programs; increase equity and opportunity for all students External link opens in new window or tab; support teachers and school leaders; and improve access, affordability and student outcomes in college External link opens in new window or tab.

"The President's budget reflects this Administration's belief that every single child in this country deserves the opportunity to receive a strong education," said U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan. "As demonstrated by the record high school graduation rate and by huge gains in college-going, especially for minority students, states, districts, educators, and students across the country are making real progress. The President's budget would continue and accelerate that progress."

The budget request is $70.7 billion in discretionary appropriations for the Education Department, a 5.4 percent increase over the previous year's funding. The budget also improves new mandatory funding for early childhood education, teacher support and college opportunity.

Below are some highlights of the proposal relating to adult education, career and technical education and community colleges.

  • $1.36 billion, equal to a $60.3 billion investment over 10 years, would fund the signature initiative America's College Promise External link opens in new window or tab to make two years of community college free for responsible students as a ticket to the middle class.
  • The 2016 proposal requests $200 million for the American Technical Training Fund External link opens in new window or tab, within the proposed CTE Innovation Fund.
  • The budget proposes $589 million for adult education to assist adults without a high school diploma, or its equivalent, in becoming literate and obtaining the knowledge and skills necessary for postsecondary education, employment, and economic self-sufficiency.
  • The budget proposes $200 million for the First in the World Program External link opens in new window or tab under the Fund for the Improvement of Postsecondary Education External link opens in new window or tab, a $140 million increase.
  • The 2016 request also includes significant investments in effective and innovative schools, including $125 million for a STEM-focused Next Generation High School proposal designed to transform the high school experience for the 21st century.

More detail on the above, plus links to information on the Department of Education's Web site can be found in this Federal Budget Update on OTAN.