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House of Representatives passes Build Back Better Act

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House of Representatives passes Build Back Better Act

On Friday, November 19, 2021, the House of Representatives passed the Build Back Better Act by a vote of 220-213. The legislation invests in programs that support human infrastructure and includes parts of the Biden administration’s proposed American Families Plan. The Democrat-backed, historic $1.7 trillion package of tax, family supports, health care and climate initiatives now moves to the Senate where it faces challenges and could be pared back in size when it is considered next month at the earliest.   

The legislation has changed in several respects from previously discussed versions, with the total amount of resources for the Department of Education now approximately $38.3 billion, about 20 percent of the funding in the original proposal. The most significant change in the bill as it relates to support for education, afterschool, and summer learning programs is that the Build Back Better Act no longer includes $82 billion for school construction or funding for free community college. Funding was trimmed for many other education-related provisions, although it grew in two areas: investments in Historically Black Colleges and Universities, Minority-Serving Institutions, and Tribally Controlled Colleges and Universities; and Community College and Industry Partnerships. Additional changes are likely when the Senate takes up the bill.   

The provisions related to afterschool and summer learning programs in the Build Back Better Act the House passed include:  

  • Child Care and Universal Pre-Kindergarten - $400 billion total

    • Includes $105 billion over FYs 2022-2027 to provide child care for specified low-income and other eligible families through a new “birth through five child care and early learning entitlement program.”

    • While the new proposed entitlement program does not extend to school-age children, the proposed expansion of child care access for significantly more young children would enable the existing child care system and Child Care Development Block Grant (CCDBG) funding to serve more school-age students by capping the amount of CCDBG funds dedicated to children birth to five years old in states that opt in to the new entitlement at 10 percent. This means 90 percent of CCDBG funding in states that opt in to the new birth to five child care entitlement program would be spent on school-age care. Note CCDBG is currently funded at $5.9 billion and could go up to $6.5 or $7 billion for FY22.

    • Universal Preschool (cost for FY 22-24 plus unspecified funding for FY 25-27) is $18 billion – could create a large increase in the need for afterschool opportunities for pre-K students.? 

  • AmeriCorps –includes VISTA support/pay increase

    • The Build Back Better Act invests nearly $20 billion in the Civilian Climate Corps, including:

    • More than $15 billion – carried out through AmeriCorps – to create climate-focused public service opportunities, and 

    • More than $4 billion – carried out through the Department of Labor – to prepare workers for good-paying jobs in emerging fields to help address the climate crisis. 

  • Trauma-Informed Care - $5 billion total

    • $2.5B included in the Build Back Better Act that would support public health approaches to reducing community violence and trauma through community-based trauma-informed care. These new funds would be available to nonprofit community-based organizations both directly and in partnerships, in order to convene relevant local entities around trauma solutions.

    • There is another $2.5 billion community violence initiative in the Judiciary Committee portion of the bill that could be accessed by nonprofit community-based organizations as well. 

 

  • Child Nutrition - $10 billion

    • The historic investment in healthy school meals will:

      • Allow nearly 9 million more children to receive free school meals by expanding eligibility and eliminating paperwork

      • Help more children get healthy nutrition over the summer by providing Summer Electronic Benefit Transfer (Summer EBT) benefits to eligible low-income children. Students will also still be able to receive summer meals at summer learning sites.

      • Provide $634 million for a Healthy School Meals Incentives demonstration project that would support activities like school and community gardens, with a potential role for community-based organizations to partner with schools in this effort. 

 

  • Youth workforce pieces for opportunity youth – young people who are not attending school and are not employed 

    • $20 billion for proven programs to help workers secure good-paying jobs. This investment will:

      • Expand Registered Apprenticeships and other paid job training programs that are targeted to serve at-risk young people, support workers who were laid off from their jobs, provide career pathways for individuals facing barriers to employment, and create partnerships with employers and labor unions in local communities to train workers to fill openings in high-skill, high-wage, and in-demand occupations.

      • Fund strategies to recruit and retain direct care workers, including raising wages and creating training opportunities to help address the direct care workforce shortage. 

 

  • $300 million for broadband access for schools and libraries – this is in addition to $65 billion for broadband investment to help families access the Internet and afford devices that was part of the bipartisan infrastructure package that was signed into law on November 15. Community-based organizations can benefit from this new grant program as well as libraries and public housing. 

 

  • The bill would create a program to provide paid leave for private sector workers, to take effect in January 2024. Notably, the new paid-leave program?deviates from unpaid leave-taking under the?Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) in dramatic ways. The new paid leave proposal would apply to all employers regardless of size of their employer and require employers to provide leave to all workers regardless of length of service, job type?or worker classification. Moreover, there are significant differences in employee notice requirements and the definition of who qualifies as a family member. The proposal does not?address the variety?of existing state leave laws. 

 

  • No longer includes school construction funds. 

The House-passed version of the bill would be funded, in large measure, through a series of tax increases—including a new 15 percent minimum tax on large U.S.-based corporations and new surcharges on high-income taxpayers. The bill is progressing on a partisan track using the budget reconciliation process, with challenging times ahead in the Senate where it needs a simple majority of votes to pass. For more information see a fact sheet on education-related components of the Build Back Better Act as well as the bill text

Now is an ideal time to weigh in with your members of Congress - speaking out in support of afterschool program funding is especially important! Friends of afterschool can contact their members of Congress about the importance of funding afterschool and summer learning programs.  

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BY: Maria Rizo      07/26/21

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State child care stabilization grants open with many afterschool programs eligible

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BY: Jillian Luchner      11/18/21

ARP ESSER state plans are in! More funds are hitting the ground at the state and local level

With the 2021-2022 school year in full-swing, the federal American Rescue Plan relief funds are making important impacts in states and communities. At this point, all 50 states have submitted their Elementary and Secondary Emergency Relief Fund (ESSER) plans. The Department of Education is...

BY: Jillian Luchner      11/11/21

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BY: Erik Peterson      10/01/21

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BY: Erik Peterson      07/09/21

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BY: Jillian Luchner      07/01/21

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BY: Erik Peterson      09/17/21

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Historically the month of August is a slow one in Washington, D.C., with Congress taking off for a summer break. While the House and Senate are now in a recess for a several weeks, that break did not come before a frenzy of legislative work that is worthy of a recap. In late July, before...

BY: Erik Peterson      08/16/21

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BY: Erik Peterson      06/01/21

Biden administration releases full FY 2022 budget proposal, increases afterschool funding

On May 28, the Biden administration released its full FY 2022 discretionary budget request, about six weeks after releasing an initial budget blueprint. With regard to education, the proposal includes $1.31 billion for the Nita M. Lowey 21st Century Community Learning Centers, an increase of $52...

BY: Erik Peterson      05/28/21

The Biden administration’s American Family Plan – what it means for afterschool

In late April, President Joe Biden released the American Families Plan, the second part of an overall infrastructure proposal and a complementary piece to the American Jobs Plan. Congress is now holding bipartisan conversations to identify infrastructure priorities. The American Families...

BY: Erik Peterson      05/07/21

President Biden offers FY 2022 budget proposal

On April 9, the Biden administration released their preliminary (or “skinny”) FY 2022 discretionary budget request which includes topline appropriations levels for each agency as well as key spending priorities. With regard to education, the proposal includes historic funding requests...

BY: Erik Peterson      04/13/21

Biden administration proposes infrastructure plan including funds for schools, child care

In late March the administration announced the first part of its Build Back Better infrastructure plan. Called the American Jobs Plan, it would invest more than $200 billion in education and education-related infrastructure, including $100 billion for school construction and modernization, $12...

BY: Erik Peterson      04/12/21

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President Biden proposes American Rescue Plan including education funding

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BY: Erik Peterson      01/20/21

President-elect Biden nominates Connecticut Education Commissioner Cardona for Sec. of Education

This week U.S. President-elect Joe Biden selected Connecticut education commissioner Miguel Cardona to serve as secretary of education. Commissioner Cardona is a former fourth-grade public school teacher who became the youngest principal in Connecticut and, later, an assistant superintendent of...

BY: Erik Peterson      12/23/20