AASA Supports HR 1586 Education Jobs Funding

Date: August 09, 2010

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Dear Representative:

On behalf of the American Association of School Administrators, representing more than 13,000 school administrators and local educational leaders, AASA strongly urges you to vote for HR 1586, as amended by the Senate on August 5. HR 1586 provides $10 billion in funding support for educator jobs and $16.1 billion in funding for the extension in the increased federal match for Medicaid (FMAP). The House has passed similar emergency education funding before, and AASA hopes the House will continue to demonstrate its commitment to public schools and educators, for the sake of our students, our schools and our future.

These two critical funding provisions will help schools prevent teacher layoffs and states avoid cuts to jobs and services. In the classroom, AASA documented that 275,000 teachers and other education employees face layoffs in the upcoming school year. Across the nation, more than half of the states have built their budgets with the assumed FMAP increase. Failure to bring the increase to fruition would put these states in the position of needing to reopen and adjust their budgets, making cuts to their limited discretionary funding. AASA anticipates that these unexpected holes in state budgets will make state education spending the source for the cuts to cover the FMAP budget gap.

The Education Department estimates the bill will save a total of 161,000 teacher jobs, more than the 140,000 in an earlier estimate. The revised number is based on updated estimates of the average salary of teachers whose jobs will be saved by the legislation.

HR 1586, as amended by the Senate is now fully offset, does not increase the deficit, and does not contain any of the cuts to education programs contained in the House-passed version of the Emergency Supplemental Appropriations bill.

Using the funds provided under this amendment, administrators report they will be able to recall, reinstate, save or maintain nearly two-thirds of the educator jobs they thought they would have to cut for the upcoming school year. Eighty-one percent report an absolute or strong preference for the early vote on the education jobs fund vote, as opposed to waiting until after the August recess.

AASA strongly urges you to support HR 1586. If you need any additional assistance, please do not hesitate to contact me at 703‐875‐0764 or nellerson@aasa.org.