Earlier today, the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee for Labor, Health and Human Services, Education and Related Agencies (L-HHS) convened to markup the FY2019 bill, which includes appropriations for both the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and the U.S. Department of Education (ED). The subcommittee agreed to hold amendments until the full committee markup scheduled for Thursday, June 28th.

FY2019 levels in the Senate bill would allocate the following for vital early learning and care programs:

  • $10,113,095,000 for Head Start, which represents a $250 million increase above the FY2018 enacted level
  • $5,226,000,000 for the Child Care and Development Block Grant (CCDBG), which is level with FY2018
  • $250 million for Preschool Development Grants, which is level with FY2018

Chairman Blunt (R-MO) offered opening statements, in which he called out the subcommittee’s continued commitment to early learning and care: “This bill support our prioritization of resources for education programs for children and their families. It includes a $250 million increase for Head Start, and it maintains a historic $2.4 billion increase from last year for the Child Care and Development Block Grant (CCDBG) Program.”

Ranking Member Murray (D-WA) praised the bipartisan process through which the subcommittee came to agreement on funding levels that included early learning: “I’m proud that once again, this bill includes real investments in students, children, workers, and families. It contains serious, new commitments to health care, research, and innovation, lifesaving cures, and access to higher education and economic growth.  It includes continued commitments to the major, new steps we took just a few months ago to invest in early learning and care, and tackling the opioid epidemic and more. This bill increases the resources for communities to tackle some of the toughest challenges we face impacting those who too often get left behind.”

Senator Alexander (R-TN) and Senator Shaheen (D-NH) also offered comments on the FY2019 Senate bill, praising the investment dedicated to addressing the opioid epidemic.

The audio recording of the markup is available here.

Check back soon for continued updates from FFYF on early learning and care in the appropriations process.