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Courtney Announces $200,000 in Federal IDEA Funding to Connecticut Parent Advocacy Center in Niantic

September 24, 2020
Press Release

WASHINGTON, DC – Today, Congressman Joe Courtney (CT-02) announced that the U.S. Department of Education has awarded $200,000 in federal funding to the Connecticut Parent Advocacy Center (CPAC) in Niantic, CT. The funding will support programming to assist parents in understanding their children’s rights to educational and early intervention services, and understanding the nature of their children’s disabilities and their educational and developmental needs, and communicating effectively with personnel responsible for providing special education, early intervention, and related services.

“Last year’s bipartisan spending agreement for FY 2020 included important investments in early childhood education, including a boost of $400 million in IDEA grants,” said Congressman Courtney. “While IDEA is still not fully funded, it’s great to see some of these resources come home to support such crucial work here in eastern Connecticut. CPAC provides such important services to parents of children with disabilities here in eastern Connecticut and throughout the state—the information and support they provide gives families the tools they need to move forward confidently and empowered in their children’s educational paths. Congratulations to Beth Reel and the team at CPAC for earning this federal grant award, there’s no doubt that their outstanding work makes this a smart investment.”

“We are honored to have been selected to receive funding from the U.S. Department of Education to continue as the Parent Training and Information Center for Connecticut,” said Beth Reel, Co-Executive Director of the CT Parent Advocacy Center. “We have a long history of serving Connecticut families and youth with disabilities, and we are excited to continue this work. This funding will support CPAC in providing impartial, objective, and high-quality information, resources, and training that increase the skills of diverse families and youth to partner with professionals and to improve outcomes for children and youth with disabilities.”

The Connecticut Parent Advocacy Center will receive a grant award of $200,000 through the U.S. Department of Education’s Parent Training and Information Center grant program, which is one of the primary vehicles under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). Click here to learn more.

Connecticut Parent Advocacy Center, Inc. (CPAC) is a statewide nonprofit organization that offers information and support to families of children with any disability or chronic illness, age birth through 26. The Center is committed to the idea that parents can be the most effective advocates for their children, given the confidence that knowledge and understanding of special education law and its procedures can bring. To learn more, click here.

In December 2019, Rep. Courtney voted to pass the final negotiated spending packages to fund the government in Fiscal Year (FY) 2020. The bill included major investments in K-12 education supports, which is welcome news to school districts across the region. The package increases funding for Title I Grants to Local Educational Agencies by $450 million, for a total of $16.3 billion, and boosts IDEA Grants to States by $400 million, for a total of $12.8 billion. Click here to learn more.