Each year, Congress determines funding levels for all of the federal defense and non-defense discretionary programs, including those that support the care and education of children from birth through age five. Traditionally, subcommittees within the House and Senate Appropriations Committees develop their own legislation that sets funding levels for the programs within their jurisdiction, which is then taken up by the full appropriations committees, and later the full legislative body, before a negotiation process between the two chambers of Congress and ultimately the president’s signature.
Over the past ten years, federal early learning programs have seen steady, significant progress through increased, bipartisan investments from both Congress and the White House.
Following the passage of four continuing resolutions, in March 2022, Congress unveiled an omnibus government spending bill. The bipartisan FY2022 omnibus package includes nearly $600 million in additional funding for early learning and care programs, including increases of $254 million for CCDBG, $289 million for Head Start, $15 million for PDG B-5, $14.5 million for IDEA grants for infants and toddlers, and $11.9 million for IDEA preschool grants.