Anne OBrien Deputy Director of the Learning First Alliance
It is easy to ignore the noise from Washington, DC, about the upcoming fiscal cliff. The tone from the Capitol hardly seems changed from the pre-election rhetoric that made many of us tune out what politicians have to say.
But we need to tune in on this. The fiscal cliff, particularly the aspect of it known as sequestration (automatic 8.2 percent budget cuts to all federal discretionary spending programs that will occur in January unless Congress acts), has very real implications for our nation’s schools. The National Education Association (NEA) estimates that it will cut $4.8 billion in education funding (including cuts to Head Start), impacting 9.3 million students attending pre-K, elementary, secondary and postsecondary schools.