Noelle Motley, Marketing Communications Manager
ALEXANDRIA, Va., (Nov. 23, 2021)— Last week, the U.S. House of Representatives passed the Build Back Better Act to provide funding, establish programs and modify provisions related to education, labor, childcare, health care, taxes, immigration and the environment. The bill will now move to the Senate and will likely be amended before voting takes place on the Senate floor.
The Build Back Better Act provides a historic $1.75 trillion investment spending plan targeted towards social infrastructure. The current language in the legislation includes funding for universal preschools for three- and four-year-old children, childcare subsidies, child nutrition programs, community-based violence intervention, as well as an extension of the child tax credit and four weeks of paid family and medical leave. The bill would also increase the maximum Pell Grant by $550 for more than 5 million students and expand access to include DREAMers. Historic investments are also promised to Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs), Tribal Colleges and Universities, and minority-serving institutions of higher learning. Unfortunately, earlier this month, $82 billion for school infrastructure was removed from the legislation after $100 billion had been requested by the Biden Administration.
“National PTA is grateful for the child and family investments in the Build Back Better Act. However, we are disappointed that federal investments for K-12 school infrastructure were removed from the final bill,” shared Anna King, president of National PTA. “Our nation’s schools are outdated and crumbling due to decades of underinvestment, and they pose alarming health and safety risks to our children and educators, hindering a generation of students from reaching their full potential.”
The Build Back Better Act National PTA’s call to Congress to support sensible solutions to gun violence and child nutrition programs. The bill’s current language provides a $5 billion investment for community violence intervention strategies and invests $10 billion into child nutrition programs.
“As negotiations progress, National PTA urges Congress to include at least $100 billion in direct grants and $30 billion in bonds for K-12 public school infrastructure projects along with our association’s other federal funding priorities,” stated Nathan R. Monell, CAE, National PTA executive director. “The long-term success of our nation depends on quality federal investments in our education system. PTA has long advocated for all children to have access to adequately-funded public schools to improve their overall well-being and help them reach their fullest potential.”
About National PTA
National PTA® comprises millions of families, students, teachers, administrators, and business and community leaders devoted to the educational success of children and the promotion of family engagement in schools. PTA is a registered 501(c)(3) nonprofit association that prides itself on being a powerful voice for all children, a relevant resource for families and communities, and a strong advocate for public education. Membership in PTA is open to anyone who wants to be involved and make a difference for the education, health, and welfare of children and youth. For more information, visit PTA.org.