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May 18, 2017

President proposes eliminated funds for school counselors

The Washington Post reports that President Trump's education budget for fiscal year 2018 would entirely eliminate funding for the Student Support and Academic Enrichments (SSAE) grant program (Title IV, Part A). A federal program which literally just received its first appropriation last year. The Student Support and Academic Enrichments (SSAE) grant program is a block grant intended to help school districts provide well-rounded education to students and cover things like school based mental health programs, school counseling programs and drug and violence prevention.  For the current budget year (FY 17) SSAE received $400 million total to sustain school districts nationwide; which compared to the need for such programs, is merely a drop in the bucket. The American Counseling Association (ACA) is extremely concerned and disappointed with the administration’s budget proposal and we urge Congress to reject the President’s budget and fund SSAE at its authorized level.

It is critical that the Student Support and Academic Enrichment grant program receives the funds it needs in order to keep it afloat. ACA is asking you to contact your U.S. Senators and have them sign onto the attached letter before May 23rd!

You can read the full letter below:

The Honorable Roy Blunt                                           The Honorable Patty Murray

Chairman                                                                    Ranking Member

Subcommittee of Labor, HHS, Education and            Subcommittee of Labor HHS, Education and Related Related Agencies                                                       Agencies

U.S. Senate Appropriations Committee                      U.S. Senate Appropriations Committee

Washington, DC 20510                                               Washington, DC 20510

 

Dear Chairman Blunt and Ranking Member Murray:

 As the Subcommittee begins its consideration of the fiscal year (FY) 2018 Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education Appropriations bill, we urge the Subcommittee to maintain the Senate’s investment in supporting a safe, healthy, and well-rounded education for all students. The Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), signed into law on December 10, 2015, included a $1.65 billion authorization level for the Student Support & Academic Enrichment Grant program (Title IV, Part A). The FY17 Omnibus bill provides $400 million for the program, which is a step in the right direction. However, we believe it was the intent of the 114th Congress, who passed the Every Student Succeeds Act, that this program is not only continuously funded, but funded at the authorized level.

While we are aware of the current budget challenges and constraints, Congress conveyed a strong message about the importance of funding the wide array of activities and programs available under the new Student Support & Academic Enrichment Grant program. The data are clear that to best support the academic success of our children, they must feel secure, supported and engaged in their school environment. Assisting states in making meaningful updates in technology, increasing opportunities to provide a well-rounded education, and implementing locally-tailored programs to reduce the use of exclusionary discipline practices are just a few of the activities supported under this grant program.

We have all heard from parents, educators, and students in our states who understand that students need access to a comprehensive education to compete successfully in the 21st century global marketplace. The programs covered under the Student Support & Academic Enrichment Grant program will foster a balanced 21st century learning environment. Moreover, they will support the principle that a well-rounded curriculum should never be a luxury reserved for some, but a necessity available to all.

We appreciate your ongoing commitment to elementary and secondary education and ask that you continue to support our children by honoring the Senate’s commitment to the Student Support & Academic Enrichment Grant program. Specifically, we ask that you continuously fund this program at the authorized level in the FY 2018 Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education Appropriations bill. Thank you for your consideration of this request.

Contact Name

Guila Todd

Contact Title

Legislative Represenative

Contact Email

gtodd@counseling.org

Contact Phone

703-823-9800X354

Related Info

42 Comments

  1. 42 Carl Nassar 18 May
    Thank you for your kind attention on this matter.
  2. 41 Leah Marcus 18 May
    As a mother and as a licensed mental gralth counselor, I implore you to continue the funding for this programming. Thank you.
  3. 40 Mark Myers 18 May
    We are most interested in student support for School Counselors. Mental Health is a vital issue today and we would greatly appreciate your support for effective programs related to this issue. 
  4. 39 Jessie j. Cunningham 18 May
         This is too important. The government must recognize that the welfare of the country depends on the mental health wellbeing of its students which helps their ability to study and contribute. Thanks
    Jessie Cunningham
  5. 38 Martha Iskyan 18 May
    Please continue to fund the student support
  6. 37 Erica F. Jenkins 18 May
     I appreciate your time. 
  7. 36 Patricia Ryan Canedo 18 May
    We appreciate your ongoing commitment to elementary and secondary education and ask that you continue to support our children by honoring the Senate’s commitment to the Student Support & Academic Enrichment Grant program. Specifically, we ask that you continuously fund this program at the authorized level in the FY 2018 Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education Appropriations bill. Thank you for your consideration of this request
  8. 35 stacy 18 May
    Please do not decrease the funding. Many people would suffer as a result of these budget cuts.
  9. 34 Dr. Tracey Robert 18 May
    Please support this bill for essential services needed by our students.
  10. 33 Jen Money-Brady 18 May
    We need more school counselors at every level. A funding shortage would only create more problems for students.  I implore you to positively impact students by having more school counselors in schools.
  11. 32 Nadirah S Muhammad-Dozier 18 May
    With all that our students face in this day and age we can not afford to have the funding slashed on such important work.  There could potentially be a ripple effect.  Please. Thank you for your consideration.
  12. 31 Elizabeth Boesel 18 May
    Please take a moment to read this and please do not eliminate the funding for this program.
    thank you 
  13. 30 Maria Helena Vanderlei Collins 18 May
    Please support and maintain the current status of the program/funds which may enhance the quality of the work guidance counselors perform on daily basis on the behalf of students.
  14. 29 Anne Flenner 18 May
    As a professional school counselor for over 10 years, I know first hand how needed and important these programs are. Our students need additional support to help them with social/emotional, academic and career needs. My student/counselor ratio right now is about 4000:1. I have applied for many grants to help provide better services for my students and families. There is no way for me to meet the raising needs of my students. ASCA sites we should be at 250:1. Please do not decrease funding. If anything, keep it the same to give our kids a chance of getting the support they need.
  15. 28 June Turer 18 May
    In today's increasingly complex environment, young people need support to maintain sanity, balance, and self-confidence while growing physically and intellectually.  Many of them are dealing
    with family problems that tend to undermine their sense of security,
    and, God knows, there are a plethora of healthy and unhealthy lifestyle choices presented to them every day in our media.  For
    some of them, the school counselor is the only person they can talk
    to about personal matters without experiencing shame or ridicule, and
    this can determine whether they continue with their education or give up.  We must provide an encouraging environment and positive support for every individual child or adolescent.  


  16. 27 Nicole Orgeron 18 May
    Students need mental health counseling in the schools. It is extremely important to our society. 
  17. 26 Loraine Swift 19 May
    I'm a LPC intern, veteran, and school counselor- I see first hand that students are often stressed, overwhelmed, and feel disconnected from their parents/families. Counselors are in a position to provide support, guidance, career advice, and individual and group counseling to help alleviate some of the stress that students face in day to day life.

    It will be a true tragedy for them to feel that they have no one to turn to and see no hope or resolution for their "temporary" problems.

    We have an opportunity to be proactive now by allowing funds to be budgeted for our most valuable sources - our future generations. 

  18. 25 Dr. B. White 19 May
    Please consider renewing this vital funding.  Unless you work in the schools, you really have no idea about the severity of mental health needs of the children we serve today.  B
  19. 24 Skip Paynter 19 May
    Dear Chairman Blunt and Ranking Member Murray:  As the
    Subcommittee begins its consideration of the fiscal year (FY) 2018
    Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education Appropriations bill, we
    urge the Subcommittee to maintain the Senate’s investment in supporting a
    safe, healthy, and well-rounded education for all students. The Every
    Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), signed into law on December 10, 2015,
    included a $1.65 billion authorization level for the Student Support
    & Academic Enrichment Grant program (Title IV, Part A). The FY17
    Omnibus bill provides $400 million for the program, which is a step in
    the right direction. However, we believe it was the intent of the 114th
    Congress, who passed the Every Student Succeeds Act, that this program
    is not only continuously funded, but funded at the authorized level. While
    we are aware of the current budget challenges and constraints, Congress
    conveyed a strong message about the importance of funding the wide
    array of activities and programs available under the new Student Support
    & Academic Enrichment Grant program. The data are clear that to
    best support the academic success of our children, they must feel
    secure, supported and engaged in their school environment. Assisting
    states in making meaningful updates in technology, increasing
    opportunities to provide a well-rounded education, and implementing
    locally-tailored programs to reduce the use of exclusionary discipline
    practices are just a few of the activities supported under this grant
    program. We have all heard from parents, educators, and students
    in our states who understand that students need access to a
    comprehensive education to compete successfully in the 21st century
    global marketplace. The programs covered under the Student Support &
    Academic Enrichment Grant program will foster a balanced 21st century
    learning environment. Moreover, they will support the principle that a
    well-rounded curriculum should never be a luxury reserved for some, but a
    necessity available to all. We appreciate your ongoing
    commitment to elementary and secondary education and ask that you
    continue to support our children by honoring the Senate’s commitment to
    the Student Support & Academic Enrichment Grant program.
    Specifically, we ask that you continuously fund this program at the
    authorized level in the FY 2018 Labor, Health and Human Services, and
    Education Appropriations bill. Thank you for your consideration of this
    request.
  20. 23 Paula McKinnon 19 May
    I am a school counselor.  My role is incredibly important in terms of a student's academic, emotional and social skills.
    I am appalled that you would even think of eliminating funding for the SSAE program.
    Do you want to "Make America Great Again" or "Make America Dumb Again"? Please sign the attached letter.
    Paula McKinnon

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