(May 7, 2019, Washington D.C.) – The Higher Education Consortium for Special Education (HECSE) is pleased that the House Subcommittee on Labor/HHS/Education Appropriations FY 2020 draft bill provides badly needed increases for programs that address the shortage of special education personnel and special education research. 


HECSE members have worked tirelessly to inform Congress about the serious special education teacher shortage which now impacts 48 states. This continued advocacy has been well received by the House Subcommittee and the bill reflects an understanding of the critical need to expand preparation for new special educators and invest in leadership programs that address the special education higher education faculty shortage. 


The draft bill includes an unprecedented $11.11 million increase for Personnel Preparation under IDEA, bringing the total to $98.31 million. The Teacher Quality Partnership Grants under the Higher Education Act would receive a $10 million increase, bringing the program to $53.09 million. The National Center for Special Education Research is increased $5 million bringing the total to $61 million. 


“The House draft bill reflects an understanding of the critical work underway to prepare new special educators with research-based skills and to prepare new special education faculty members to do that work. There simply is no substitute for a fully prepared, profession-ready teacher, and HECSE members work every day to ensure that new special educators will have the evidence-based skills needed to deliver results for students with disabilities. We applaud Subcommittee chair Rosa DeLauro (D-CT) and ranking member Tom Cole (R-OK) for increasing the investment in these key programs and supporting HECSE’s recommendations,” said Jeff Anderson, HECSE President. 


HECSE members will continue to advocate for these increases as the bill moves forward in the House and as the Senate takes up its Labor/HHS/Education spending bill. 


The House bill and report are available at the Committee’s website. The markup for the bill in the Appropriations Committee is scheduled for 10:30 AM tomorrow.