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Legislative Update

Administration Releases FY22 Budget Request

By Jodi Peterson

Posted on 2021-06-07

Administration Releases FY22 Budget Request

The Administration has released its full budget request for FY22 funding, and as expected, the proposal includes a huge increase in funding for Title I schools, universal preschool, and two years of free community college.

The budget builds upon two proposals the Administration has already introduced: the American Jobs Plan and the American Families Plan (AFP).

The budget proposes an increase of almost $30 billion, or 41%, over the fiscal year 2021–enacted level for education, including $36.5 billion in grants for Title I schools, a $20 billion increase from the 2021 enacted level; $1 billion to increase the number of counselors, school psychologists, nurses, and social workers in schools; $16 billion, an increase of $2.7 billion over 2021 enacted, for the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) to support special education and related services; $443 million for Full Service Community Schools, which provide wrap-around services to students and their families; $200 billion for universal preK and $123 billion for two years of free community college.

"This proposal reflects the Biden-Harris Administration's commitment to ensuring that student success remains at the heart of the Department of Education's work. It calls on Congress to prioritize the physical and mental health of students and close education equity gaps, especially in underserved communities," said U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona. "We need to focus on not only recovering from the pandemic but also look towards our students' education after the pandemic to ensure there are improved resources to build our education system back better than before. This budget ensures all students have access to high-quality, affordable postsecondary education, while also improving career pathways for students of all ages and levels."

The budget request also includes investments in teacher training and support included in the American Families Plan (AFP) that would provide money for Teacher Quality Partnerships, teacher preparation, and funding to support additional certifications for educators in high-demand areas including science and STEM; double TEACH grants from $4,000 to $8,000 for future teachers; and provide funding for a new teacher leadership and development program.

The Biden administration is seeking to increase the National Science Foundation’s discretionary budget by 20% to $10.2 billion. This includes a $300 million proposed increase in funding for the NSF’s Education and Human Resources Directorate.

More information on the budget proposal for education can be found here.

U.S. Department of Education Issues FAQ on Pandemic Funding for Schools and Districts

The U.S. Department of Education issued guidance on the use of federal funding allocated through the Elementary and Secondary Emergency Relief (ESSER) funds.

The document answers Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) on how ESSER funds may be used in response to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on students in preK–12 education.

ESSER funds give districts broad flexibility for how to spend the emergency money approved by Congress; funding should respond to the impacts COVID-19 had on students, such as the recovery of lost instructional time, digital equity, and upgrades for safe school buildings. States cannot place conditions on how districts spend funds.

U.S. House of Representatives Passes the Rural STEM Education Research Act

In action May 18, the U.S. House of Representatives passed H.R. 210, the Rural STEM Education Research Act, by a vote of 350-75.

The legislation addresses the inequities faced by rural students that make it harder to access quality STEM education, including giving teachers more resources and training in STEM, engaging students in hands-on education within their communities, increasing access to broadband, and supporting research to improve the quality of STEM learning in rural communities. Read more here.

Lander Confirmed as OSTP Director

Dr. Eric Lander was confirmed by the Senate as White House Office of Science and Technology Policy director by voice vote on May 28. Dr. Lander will also serve as the President’s Science Advisor and will be a member of President Biden’s Cabinet.  Read more here.

Jodi Peterson is the Assistant Executive Director of Communications, Legislative & Public Affairs for the National Science Teaching Association (NSTA) and Chair of the STEM Education Coalition. Reach her via e-mail at or via Twitter at @stemedadvocate.

The mission of NSTA is to promote excellence and innovation in science teaching and learning for all.

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