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. Joe, you might want to do some reading on the fate of Hoosier whistleblowers before you get your expectations raised up.

  2. I had a hospital and dcs caseworker falsify reports that my child was born with drugs in her system. I filed a complaint with the Indiana department of health....and they found that the hospital falsified drug screens in their investigation. Then I filed a complaint with human health services in Washington DC...dcs drug Testing is unregulated and is indicating false positives...they are currently being investigated by human health services. Then I located an attorney and signed contracts one month ago to sue dcs and Anderson community hospital. Once the suit is filed I am taking out a loan against the suit and paying a law firm to file a writ of mandamus challenging the courts jurisdiction to invoke chins case against me. I also forwarded evidence to a u.s. senator who contacted hhs to push an investigation faster. Once the lawsuit is filed local news stations will be running coverage on the situation. Easy day....people will be losing their jobs soon...and judge pancol...who has attempted to cover up what has happened will also be in trouble. The drug testing is a kids for cash and federal funding situation.

  3. (A)ll (C)riminals (L)ove (U)s is up to their old, "If it's honorable and pro-American, we're against it," nonsense. I'm not a big Pence fan but at least he's showing his patriotism which is something the left won't do.

  4. While if true this auto dealer should be held liable, where was the BMV in all of this? How is it that the dealer was able to get "clean" titles to these vehicles in order to sell them to unsuspecting consumers?

  5. He has refused his Assent to Laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good. He has forbidden his Governors to pass Laws of immediate and pressing importance, He has erected a multitude of New Offices, and sent hither swarms of Officers to harrass our people, and eat out their substance. He has combined with others to subject us to a jurisdiction foreign to our constitution, and unacknowledged by our laws; giving his Assent to their Acts of pretended Legislation: For imposing Taxes on us without our Consent: He is at this time transporting large Armies of foreign Mercenaries to compleat the works of death, desolation and tyranny, already begun with circumstances of Cruelty & perfidy scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworthy the Head of a civilized nation.. He has excited domestic insurrections amongst us, and has endeavoured to bring on the inhabitants of our frontiers, the merciless [ ] Savages, whose known rule of warfare, is an undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions. GOD BLESS THE GOVERNORS RESISTING! Count on the gutless judiciary to tie our children down and facilitate the swords being drawn across their throats. Wake Up America ...