The 2018 federal budget is proposing an education cut of $9.2 billion (13.5%), the amount it takes to pay for 836,000 students.

I’m not sure what this means. The Dept of Ed doesn’t “pay for students”; local school districts pay for students.

As we previously reported, this budget cuts the federal work study program in half and phases out the public service loan forgiveness program. In newly announced cuts, the government will cease to subsidize the interest on federal loans, affecting 12 million students.

Well :-) if you’re going to forgive loans, they’re not really loans, then, are they?

It seems to be a little more thought needs to be given to this one. Key point here is that the federal funding of college education on easy credit terms is inflationary to tuition. As long as the uni’s know that there’s easy money to be had, they will keep jacking up their tuition rates and dump the costs on the taxpayer.

I don’t see that as being sustainable. In fact, I see it as highly analogous to the housing practices that took down the economy back in 2008.

The 2018 proposed budget earmarks $1 billion for grant programs to high-poverty public schools. Better recognized as the buzzword term “school choice,” these grants allow poor students to leave their struggling schools and switch to a better school district on the state’s dime. This is, of course, in opposition of investing the funds into the edifying reform of impoverished schools and districts.

We have been investing in “edifying reform of impoverished schools and districts” for my entire lifetime. I’m 62. At some point, the old adage about the definition of insanity starts to apply.

It should be clear by now that there is something *systemic* that prevents us from improving the educational quality of our high poverty schools. I suspect that the *systemic problem* has to do with the nature of our educational organization inefficiently into local school districts, but ….that’s not changing anytime soon. So, it’s time to think outside the box (or, think outside the local district) and enable capable students the flexibility to take their education where they want.

Put another way: If the parents of a capable low-income child want to drive an hour to get their child into another school where he or she can have a better chance of success, it is unthinkable (some would say evil) that we would let a bureaucracy prevent that from happening.

These grant programs will allow better funded districts to continue to thrive, while the under-funded, short staffed, rural, and disenfranchised will continue much the same. An example of how increasing school choice worked out in Detroit’s public schools, which saw steep enrollment losses and rising debt.

This is sophistry. First off, the number of students availing themselves of the program would have to hit levels which are far above what we’ve seen in voucher states in order for the local district to take a substantial financial hit. The participation in these choice programs has never hit the level that CAUSES the district to be hurt financially directly.

In the case of Detroit, their entire CITY has seen an outflux of population of rather staggering proportions, exacerbated by the struggling economy, over the last few decades. If the entire city is financially struggling and losing population, so will the school district. You can’t logically call out the voucher program as the cause of the problem problem when enrollment is dropping off for other reasons even more commonly.

Thus, Detroit is an outlier, and not representative of the effects of the program in an area with a normal or strong economy.

We are no longer going to measure compassion by the number of programs or the number of people on those programs. We’re going to measure compassion and success by the number of people we help get off of those programs and get back in charge of their own lives.” — Mick Mulvaney, Office of Management and Budget director

That’s wisdom, pure and simple. A paycheck is always going to be larger than a welfare check.

The largest blind spot of the school choice ideology is the assumption that moving students out of less than satisfactory situations will make the situation better. It is a short-sighted, band-aid attempt to “fix the system” without actually fixing the system.

I agree that it is an unproven assumption, although there are indications that if properly managed, it can be beneficial. However, what we do know is that doing the same thing and hoping for a different result should not be an option going forward. An enormous amount of human capital is being wasted by our inability to educate the low-income third of our population to any decent standard.

If the family unit is now vital to this administration’s use of federal funds, after-school programs that provide safe and educational spaces for children should be part of what keeps working parents working.

I don’t see what connection the desirability of the “family unit” has to do with expenditures.

That said, I have a different view of this. Isn’t it time the schools got off the farm-economy schedule they operate on and get onto a modern-economy one? Why do we still have students waiting for buses at the crack of dawn and getting off school at 2:30 PM? That’s a farm schedule, where the child gets up with the parents working the farm, and gets home early so he can work alongside.

Enough of this. Let’s put the kids in school at 8:30 AM, and keep them there until 5. No “before school” and “after school”; that’s SCHOOL. Adjust the local tax rates to cover it, not fund any of it out of the feds.

In another puzzling cut, career and technical education loses $168 million in funding.

I find that one puzzling too, but I will point out that 168M doesn’t pay for squat in terms of real, classroom education. What was that money being used for? I suspect it’s getting cut out because it wasn’t funding anything practical, but I could be wrong.

Already walking back on promises and cutting back on commitments to strong family units is not an unusual tactic for this administration. However, to see our children’s future used as a political leveraging tactic is particularly egregious.

I have no idea what that means. Are you seriously suggesting that the family unit requires taxpayer dollars to survive?

As noted from the start, the chances of this budget being passed through the House in it’s current state is slim to none.

So let’s not demagogue it. Let’s wait for the final result. As you are well aware, this President starts out from a negotiation position and expects to compromise, unlike prior Presidents.

Free markets, free minds. Question all narratives. If you think one political party is right and the other party is evil, the problem with our politics is you.