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Could Recent Cuts to Special Education, Title I Be Undone?

The last time Congress passed a short-term budget bill, it cut spending on special education, Title I, and small group of other education programs.

Although a new bill was passed yesterday, these programs won't be cut again, something that had worried special education and other advocates. (President Barack Obama still has to sign the temporary spending measure, which would last until Dec. 16.)

These programs were affected because of the way they are funded, which is a little different than some other education programs.

And the bigger worry, that the 1.5 percent cut could grow much larger when applied to an entire fiscal year, may also be resolved.

The way I'm reading it, it even sounds like states might actually get back the collective $329 million they lost in the prior cut: See the very last line of the missive below. The Department of Education told states that:

"the across-the-board cut of 1.503 percent in the 2012 advance appropriations is in effect only for the period of the current continuing resolution. In effect, the apportionment says that an amount equal to 1.503 percent of the 2012 advance appropriations for each of the affected programs is temporarily unavailable for obligation.

The Department agrees that if Congress passes and the President signs a full-year appropriations bill that does not contain a provision that requires a cut from the advance appropriations (or if a post-November 18 CR does not require such a cut), there would be no cut applied to the 2012 advance appropriation. If such legislation is enacted, then the temporary restriction would be lifted and the funds would be available for obligation to the States."

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