UPDATE on 4/26/13: Click here to see if your Congress member signed this letter requesting funding for the ESSCP and send a thank you letter. Acknowledgement for a favorable actions is an important piece to our advocacy.
Earlier this week President Obama signed legislation finalizing federal spending allocations for fiscal year 2013. For the Elementary and Secondary School Counseling Program (ESSCP), this means total FY 2013 funding of just under $50 million, after taking into account the effect of the sequestration still in place for most federal domestic spending. While this is a reduction from the previous year’s funding level, maintaining ESSCP was not a foregone conclusion given the continued strong interest members of Congress have in slashing federal spending. ESSCP is the only federal grant program focused solely on supporting the development of school counseling programs, including the hiring of school counselors. By law, the first $40 million appropriated for the program must be devoted to supporting grants for elementary schools.
ACA is working to promote continued funding for the program for fiscal year 2014, and we need your help! These days, members of Congress won’t spend money unless they know their constituents want them to.
Congressman Jim Langevin (D-Rhode Island) will soon be sending a letter to his colleagues on the House Appropriations Committee asking them to allocate $75 million for ESSCP in FY 2014. We want as many House members as possible to join him on this letter.
Please take a moment to ask your Representative to cosign Congressman Langevin’s letter in support of school counseling services and the ESSCP program. This is the most direct, concrete way right now that your Representative in Congress can support school counseling services. School counseling helps students succeed, and federal investments in our children and youth are an investment in our nation’s future. Unfortunately, the national average student-to-counselor ratio is 460:1, far above the 250:1 ratio recommended by ACA.
You can find out who your Representative is, find their phone number, and pull up draft messages on this issue on our online advocacy website at http://capwiz.com/counseling. We need calls and emails coming in to House members by April 8th, since that is when Rep. Langevin’s office is closing the letter.
Thank you for your help! For more information, please contact Guila Todd with ACA’s public policy office at firstname.lastname@example.org.