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Federal budget cuts lead to uncertainty for state's student civic programs

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Chuck Dunlap, executive director of the Indiana Bar Foundation, says federal budget cuts mean the IBF’s Civic Education Program will have no federal funding as of September.

A budget approved by Congress completely defunded the national Center for Civic Education (CCE), which allocates funds to each state. Congress has removed from the 2011 budget the $35 million that had been earmarked for civic education.

Locally, that means IBF’s civic education programs for middle and high school students – Project Citizen and We the People – will receive no federal funds this fall.

Dunlap said the IBF has been anticipating budget cuts on a national level and had already been brainstorming ways to keep the programs afloat. Dunlap said he thinks the programs will survive the defunding, thanks to the support of the bar and fundraising efforts, but changes to the programs are inevitable.

State finals for We the People program are at Union Station every December. Dunlap said the finals will likely be moved to another more affordable location. “We’re still going to have a state final – it may look a little bit different,” he said. The IBF may be unable to provide the usual hotel accommodations for legal professionals who visit Indianapolis to volunteer at the finals.

Andrew Homan, Civic Education Program manager for the IBF, said that Congress included $29 million in Title II A of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) for competitive grants for national non-profits that provide teacher professional development programs.

Homan said the CCE will likely now compete with other non-profits for grant money but that he does not know what the outcome might be. Regardless, the funding would be “dramatically less,” Homan said, than the amount previously allocated to civic education. Also unknown is whether only national non-profits will be allowed to compete for funds; if so, the Indiana Bar Foundation would be unable to apply for a grant from that $29 million.

Dunlap said the CCE will likely be fighting to be included in the 2012 budget. “We’re making plans in case that does not happen,” he said.

For more on this issue and how funding cuts are affecting other legal groups statewide, see the April 27 edition of Indiana Lawyer.

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  1. A traditional parade of attorneys? Really Evansville? Y'all need to get out more. When is the traditional parade of notaries? Nurses? Sanitation workers? Pole dancers? I gotta wonder, do throngs of admiring citizens gather to laud these marching servants of the constitution? "Show us your billing records!!!" Hoping some video gets posted. Ours is not a narcissistic profession by any chance, is it? Nah .....

  2. My previous comment not an aside at court. I agree with smith. Good call. Just thought posting here a bit on the if it bleeds it leads side. Most attorneys need to think of last lines of story above.

  3. Hello everyone I'm Gina and I'm here for the exact same thing you are. I have the wonderful joy of waking up every morning to my heart being pulled out and sheer terror of what DCS is going to Throw at me and my family today.Let me start from the !bebeginning.My daughter lost all rights to her 3beautiful children due to Severe mental issues she no longer lives in our state and has cut all ties.DCS led her to belive that once she done signed over her right the babies would be with their family. We have faught screamed begged and anything else we could possibly due I hired a lawyer five grand down the drain.You know all I want is my babies home.I've done everything they have even asked me to do.Now their saying I can't see my grandchildren cause I'M on a prescription for paipain.I have a very rare blood disease it causes cellulitis a form of blood poisoning to stay dormant in my tissues and nervous system it also causes a ,blood clotting disorder.even with the two blood thinners I'm on I still Continue to develop them them also.DCS knows about my illness and still they refuse to let me see my grandchildren. I Love and miss them so much Please can anyone help Us my grandchildren and I they should be worrying about what toy there going to play with but instead there worrying about if there ever coming home again.THANK YOU DCS FOR ALL YOU'VE DONE. ( And if anyone at all has any ideals or knows who can help. Please contact (765)960~5096.only serious callers

  4. He must be a Rethuglican, for if from the other side of the aisle such acts would be merely personal and thus not something that attaches to his professional life. AND ... gotta love this ... oh, and on top of talking dirty on the phone, he also, as an aside, guess we should mention, might be important, not sure, but .... "In addition to these allegations, Keaton was accused of failing to file an appeal after he collected advance payment from a client seeking to challenge a ruling that the client repay benefits because of unreported income." rimshot

  5. I am not a fan of some of the 8.4 discipline we have seen for private conduct-- but this was so egregious and abusive and had so many points of bad conduct relates to the law and the lawyer's status as a lawyer that it is clearly a proper and just disbarment. A truly despicable account of bad acts showing unfit character to practice law. I applaud the outcome.

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