AFT - American Federation of Teachers

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AFT Resolutions

FAIR FUNDING FOR FEDERAL SPECIAL EDUCATION MANDATES

WHEREAS, Congress continues to renege on its promise to fairly fund the costs of federal mandates in special education; and

WHEREAS, such mandates are imposing extraordinary costs on state and local school districts; and

WHEREAS, lack of proper funding prevents many special education children from receiving a quality education in the "least-restrictive environment"; and

WHEREAS, the refusal to adequately fund such important and worthwhile mandates results in de facto discrimination against poor children in inner cities and in poorer rural areas; and

WHEREAS, special education federal mandates cost $42 billion last year; and

WHEREAS, such expenditures encourage poorer districts without adequate property tax revenues to cut back on efforts to raise standards and challenge all students; and

WHEREAS, Congress no longer faces the huge federal deficits that provided excuses for past failures to fund federal special education mandates; and

WHEREAS, AFT's support for quality education for all children is a basic tenet of our commitment to democracy:

RESOLVED, that the AFT work with the AFL-CIO to make fair federal funding for federal special education mandates one of labor's priority items for this and subsequent sessions of Congress until a 50/50 federal-state formula is realized by 2002.


(2000)