“We must come together as a country to make sound, bipartisan investments in education,” Secretary of Education Arne Duncan said earlier today at a budget hearing on Capitol Hill. “It is unconscionable for us to ask a generation of students to pay the price for adult political dysfunction.”
Duncan testified before the House Committee on Appropriations as part of the annual federal budget process. In the early months of each year, the President submits his budget request to Congress. Congress can then choose to accept the President’s request or develop its own budget, deciding which programs to authorize and fund before the new fiscal year starts on October 1.
Secretary Duncan testified that the Obama Administration’s fiscal year 2013 education budget reflects the Obama Administrations commitment to reduce spending, make government more efficient and invest to secure our future. “We must educate our way to a better economy,” Duncan said.
Key areas of the budget that the Secretary highlighted include:
- Making college affordable and the middle-class dream alive for Americans by providing new incentives for states and institutions to keep college costs from escalating;
- Providing billions of dollars a year in aid to college students through Pell grants;
- Prevent student loan interest rates from doubling this summer;
- Double the number of work-study jobs within five years;
- Make the American Opportunity Tax Credit permanent;
- And dedicating significant resources to transforming the teaching profession through a new program called RESPECT.
Read more about 2013 budget and what it means for you.