President Trump’s FY 2018 Budget Slashes Funding for Education, Youth Programs

President Trump’s $1.1 trillion budget request for FY 2018 proposes drastic cuts to education and child welfare services while reducing support for programs which enable low-income youths to stay in school and get on a college or career path.

The proposal includes a $54 billion increase in defense spending—as well as additional funding to support Trump’s mass deportation agenda—that is funded by a decrease of the same amount in domestic spending, which includes cuts for education and child welfare programs, according to the Center for Law and Social Policy. The budget also proposes to break a previous bipartisan agreement that any sequester relief would be applied equally to defense and non-defense spending.

It would reduce the Education Dept. (DoEd) budget by 13% or $9.2 billion. Student aid and other education programs for low-income students see the biggest cuts.

It would:

  • Invest an additional $1.4 billion in school choice programs, including $1 billion for Title I, $250 million for a new private school choice program, and $168 million for charter schools. The Title I funding is designed to support increased school choice options for students by encouraging districts to adopt a system of student-based budgeting and open enrollment.  
  • Eliminate the $1.1 billion 21st Century Community Learning Centers program. It provides critical before-school, after-school, and summer programs for low-income children and youth. This will undermine more than one million children and their parents.  The Trump Administration justifies this cut with claims that the program is not effective; however, there is strong evidence ( that quality after-school programs help children and youth become more engaged in school, raise their academic performance, and remain safe during non-school hours. 
  • Reduce funding for Gaining Early Awareness and Readiness for Undergraduate Programs (GEAR UP) $322.8 million to $219 million and reduce TRIO, which provides services to low-income children and first-generation college students, which is currently funded at $808 million.
  • Reduce or eliminate more than 20 other programs, including the $190 million Comprehensive Literacy Development Grant program, the successor to Striving Readers. It would also shrink or scrap $66.8 million in payments for federal property to districts that receive Impact Aid. The Obama administration proposed a similar cut last year. It would also shrink or scrap $66.8 million in payments to districts that receive Impact Aid, which help those with a big federal presence, such as a military base or American Indian reservation.


The Labor Dept.’s shrinks by $2.5 billion or 21%. The budget substantially cuts grants to states and local areas to provide workforce training to low-income youth and adults through the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA), which passed Congress in 2014

The WIOA is one of the primary sources of funding that helps states and local communities support out-of-school youth in accessing job training, reengaging in school, and earning their diplomas as well as partner with employers to provide pathways into the workforce. While the budget proposes that states, localities, and employers take more responsibility for these programs, significant funding reductions will mean less help for low-income youth.

It would eliminate funding for the Corporation for National and Community Service and the AmeriCorps program, which currently serves 80,000 youths.


The budget disinvests in programs that prevent youth from entering the justice system while increasing support for law-and-order enforcement strategies that have historically targeted communities of color and immigrants. The overall Department of Justice budget is down 3.8% percent from the 2017 annualized CR level.

It’s unknown which discretionary programs will be impacted; however, it’s a good bet that reentry services, the Title II Formula Grants Program and The Title V – Delinquency Prevention Program of the Juvenile Justice Delinquency and Prevention Act are on the chopping block. These programs provide funding to support state and local prevention and intervention efforts for court-involved youth and those at risk of justice involvement and juvenile justice system improvements. 

A number of independent agencies would also be tossed out, including the Appalachian Regional Commission; Institute of Museum and Library Services; National Endowment for the Arts; National Endowment for the Humanities; Neighborhood Reinvestment Corporation; and United States Interagency Council on Homelessness.


The proposed budget eliminates funding for the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS) and the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) program in the Department of Housing and Urban Development. This will severely limit states’ and communities’ ability to respond to critical challenges and support low-income youth. Many local communities use CDBG to support community-based, job training, and workforce development programs for low-income youth.


But not all programs would be slashed. Spending for students in special education, which is provided under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, would remain level at about $13 billion.

The blueprint released by the White House did not include details on a host of other programs, including the $1 billion Career and Technical Education program, the largest source of federal funding for high schools, or Head Start, which helps provide early-childhood education programs for kids from low-income families.  

Info: (budget).

About Frank Klimko

Frank Klimko is a nationally known journalist, grants expert and speech writer/speaker. He has years of experience helping nonprofits devise lists of the right funding opportunities and secure funding from these foundations and corporate entities. Clients have focused on an array of areas including child care, homeless, hunger and K-12 education. Additionally, he is a Freedom of Information Act expert, who has helped numerous clients with securing proprietary information from the federal government. Currently, Frank Klimko writes the Children & Youth Funding Report and Private Grants Alert, which are Washington DC-based publications. CYF is a daily publication covering Congress, the Education Dept. and the various federal regulatory agencies. PGA, another daily publication, covers the world of private philanthropy.
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