Please join NAfME and the Title IV-A Coalition on November 6, 2019, for a National Day of Action to advocate for full funding of the Student Support and Academic Enrichment (SSAE) grant program under Title IV-A of the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). The Title IV-A flexible block grant allows districts to invest in well-rounded education programming, which includes music education.
Congress has previously recognized the importance of Title IV-A, providing $1.1 billion in FY18 and $1.17 billion in FY19 for this section of ESSA. At these funding levels, school districts are receiving substantial funds and have the flexibility to make meaningful investments in the program areas they need most.
This year, the House and Senate suggested increases in Title IV-A funding, but appropriations for education funding are currently stalled. Now is the time we need to demonstrate to Congress how increased access to music education, supported by Title IV-A dollars, benefits all students. Below are some ways to show your ongoing support for Title IV-A and to ask Congress to continue investing in this program.
1. Write Your Members of Congress
Use our easy advocacy tool to send a letter to Congress! We’ve provided language that you have the option to customize, and our platform will electronically deliver your letter to your Representatives and Senators.
2. Tweet Your Members of Congress
See sample tweets below and use our easy advocacy tool to automatically send tweets to your elected officials! Please feel free to add additional activities re Title IV-A programs your organization supports in your individual tweets. Be sure to tag your U.S. Senator or Representative, replacing red copy below.
@[Senator/Rep], thank you for funding #TitleIVA of #ESSA in FY19, which provides access to music and arts. Our nation’s students deserve the $1.6 billion Congress promised. Please fully fund #TitleIVA in FY20.
@[Senator/Rep] Full funding for #TitleIVA means districts have local control and flexibility to invest in programs that support a well-rounded education, which includes music education. Please fully fund #TitleIVA in FY20. #ESSA
All students benefit from #TitleIVA funds, and w/o them districts are forced to choose between critical programs like safe and healthy schools, well-rounded education, and instructional support for #edtech. @[Senator/Rep] Please fully fund #TitleIVA in FY20. #ESSA
Districts and schools are making effective use of #TitleIVA funds from FY18+19 by investing in music education. @[Senator/Rep] fully fund #TitleIVA.
3. Call Your Congressional Offices
Below is a script you can use:
I am a [insert profession or organizational affiliation] and a voter in [insert home state and or congressional district] and I am calling to urge Senator/Representative [insert name here] to fully fund the Student Support and Academic Enrichment grant program under Title IV, Part A of the Every Student Succeeds Act in fiscal year 2020.
Congress recognized the importance of the Title IV-A block grant in FY 2018 by providing $1.1 billion and $1.17 billion in FY 2019, which have given districts the flexibility to make meaningful investments in school programs based on their needs. This grant program allows districts to make meaningful investments in well-rounded education programs, such as music education.
All of the areas supported by this block grant are critical to ensure all students graduate from high school ready to enter college or the workforce. I strongly urge you to please fully fund Title IV-A at $1.6 billion in FY 2020.
Tooshar Swain, Assistant Director of Public Policy, November 5, 2019. © National Association for Music Education (NAfME.org)