"Cruel to children and catastrophic to public education" is how AFT President Randi Weingarten characterizes President Donald Trump's budget proposal. Speaking with reporters on the morning the White House rolled out the plan, Weingarten hit back hard against Trump and Education Secretary Betsy DeVos, who are seeking $10.6 billion in federal education cuts in the next fiscal year after factoring in more than $1 billion for vouchers and other school choice options. In the K-12 arena
, Trump and DeVos want to eliminate more than 20 programs, including after-school and summer programs that serve 1.6 million children, and slash $2.1 billion for teacher training and class size reduction. The budget plan also would cut $800 billion in Medicaid
, a lifeline for students with special needs as well as millions of low-income families. In higher education
, the White House is asking Congress to ax $143 million in funds that help students afford college, including elimination of a loan forgiveness program that currently helps half a million Americans pursue careers in teaching and public service, as well as work-study programs, subsidized loans for students and programs providing the child care many students with kids need to attend college.