Washington State House Democrats


Washington schools could suffer under sequestration

Photo courtesy University of Washington
Photo courtesy University of Washington
Automatic federal budget cuts kicked in on Friday as a result of Congress’ failure to reach a compromise spending plan. While programs like Social Security and Medicare will largely go untouched, many other areas of federal spending could see spending reductions.

According to White House estimates, Washington state could lose $11.6 million in funding for primary and secondary education as a result of sequestration.

More specifically:

  • The Federal Funds Information for States estimates higher education assistance programs like Work Study and the Supplemental Education Opportunity Grant could also be impacted. Their estimates show that Washington’s 40 public colleges and universities could lose over $900,000 in federal aid.
  • Based on information collected by the Washington Student Achievement Council, 1,357 public and private school students could face a reduction in their financial aid packages.
  • The University of Washington estimates a potential reduction of $75-$100 million in federal grant and contract support for fiscal year 2013.

“These are real cuts that would impact real students,” said Larry Seaquist (D-Gig Harbor), who chairs the House Higher Education Committee. “Congress could learn a thing or two from the bipartisan work we do in the House Higher Education Committee. We’re focused on making college more affordable for students and using our higher education system to get our economy moving again. Partisan gridlock in the other Washington serves no purpose and will only hurt our efforts.”