House of Reps maintains Basic Education funding at $800M

July 19th, the House Appropriations Committee marked up the State, Foreign Operations FY18 Appropriations bill (bill here and report here). You can find the Chairman’s statement here.
In total, the bill is $10 billion lower than FY17 enacted levels, providing $47.4 billion in regular discretionary and Overseas Contingency Operations (OCO) funding. The bill prevents the Administration from implementing any reorganization changes to the State Department and USAID until those proposals have been submitted to the appropriate congressional oversight committees for review.

Some other key provisions of the bill include:

$15.4 billion for State Department operations
$1.5 billion for USAID operations
$22.7 billion for bilateral economic assistance
$888 million for country assistance through international organizations
$8.8 billion for international security assistance

Prevents funds for the following programs:

* Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change
* Green Climate Fund
* Conditioned funding for the UN Human Rights Council based on Israel-related policy

Basic education fared well in FY18, maintaining its $800 million appropriation mark. The committee did increase the number of dollars directed to the Global Partnership for Education (GPE) by $12.5 million from FY17 levels for a total of $87.5 million out of the $800 million. The Education Cannot Wait Fund was not allocated money in the House bill.  
The committee’s report on the bill included the following items of note:

* A concern that USAID is not integrating programs for pre-primary education into the education strategy. The committee directs the Administrator to submit a report on the criteria used to determine where pre-primary education programs are funded and encourages the Administrator to promote early childhood development.

* The committee recommended that USAID provide technical assistance to local partners in order to implement and scale leadership development programs to sustain and facilitate education opportunities.

* A recommendation for USAID to consider a school-based eye health program to ensure access to eyeglasses for children.

* A concern around violence against children and the impact on education outcomes.

* A directive to report on the progress made to reduce the funding pipeline of basic education assistance.