U.S. Senator Pat Roberts today offered an amendment to end untested and unauthorized education programs like the Obama Administration's Race to the Top program and instead transfer funding to Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) programming.
"The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act is the granddaddy of unfunded mandates," Roberts said. "States are required to comply, but the Congress has not done its job in allocating precious education dollars to help children with disabilities and special needs. My amendment will put federal resources where they are needed and proven instead of being wasted on an experiment."
IDEA provides federal funding for the education of children with disabilities. It supplements state and local funding to pay for some of the additional costs of educating school-aged and preschool-aged children, and infants and toddlers with disabilities.
In the fall of 2011, 6.5 million children ages six through 21 received educational services under IDEA.
Senator Jerry Moran (KS) is a co-sponsor of the amendment.
The amendment is endorsed by the American Association of School Administrators, the National School Boards Association, the Association of Education Service Agencies, National PTA, the National Rural Education Association and the National Rural Education Advocacy Coalition.
Senator Roberts is an outspoken opponent of the Race to the Top grant program. He is a member of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee.