As the oldest and largest coalition of education associations in existence, the Committee for Education Funding (CEF) provides a strong and unified voice in support of increasing the federal investment in education. Our mission is to provide our members, the public, the US Congress, the Executive Branch, and the media with information in support of federal investments in education. CEF takes positions on federal education funding issues that represent a consensus of its membership and then communicates those positions to federal government officials and Members of Congress.Committee for Education Funding
CEF was founded in 1969 with the goal of achieving adequate federal financial support for our nation’s educational system. The coalition is voluntary, nonprofit and nonpartisan. CEF’s more than 100 member organizations represent the continuum of education — early childhood education, elementary and secondary education, higher education, adult and career education, and educational enhancements such as libraries and museums — including students, teachers and faculty, parents, administrators, counselors and other school employees, and school board members .
The Committee for Education Funding is managed by American Continental Group and is governed by the membership as a whole with a 16-member Executive Committee, which includes three officers elected from among the membership. CEF publishes timely updates, sponsors seminars on current policy issues led by recognized experts, and holds weekly meetings of its membership that provide a forum for information exchange and policy discussions. CEF provides information and assistance to Members of Congress and the Administration on education funding issues, and holds numerous briefings and policy meetings with Congressional staff and Administration officials during the year. At its annual Gala, CEF honors outstanding advocates of federal education investment.
We invite comments and inquiries regarding CEF membership or its publications.
- Jeff Carter, President
National Coalition for Literacy
- Stephanie Giesecke, President
National Association of Independent Colleges and Universities
- Valerie Williams, Treasurer
National Association of State Directors of Special Education
- Jocelyn Bissonnette, Past President
National Association of Federally Impacted Schools
Who are CEF’s members?
What has CEF achieved?
What makes CEF unique?
Whom do I contact with questions?
CEF staff are experts on the budget and education funding and communication strategies. Please contact CEF’s Executive Director Sheryl Cohen at (202) 327-8125 with questions or CEF’s President Jocelyn Bissonnette at (202) 624-5455.
CEF Activities and Accomplishments
The Committee for Education Funding connects members of the education community to Congress, communicates our message of the need for increased federal investment in education, and fights to raise the sequester caps.
Advocacy and Information
CEF has begun a new advocacy campaign to increase the investment in education from 2% to 5% of the federal budget. “5¢ Makes Sense” provides the evidence behind the effectiveness of investing in education all along the continuum — early childhood education, elementary and secondary education, higher education, career and lifelong learning, and educational enhancements such as libraries, music, and other services that help students learn. It advocates for increasing the education investment to 5¢ of every federal budget dollar.
Legislative Conference and Gala
Each year CEF holds a Legislative Conference and Gala that is an opportunity for the education community to come together to exchange success stories, coordinate advocacy strategies, and to honor those who have demonstrated their strong commitment to investing in education.
In 2016, 400 CEF members and others in attendance at the Gala heard from Rep. Tom Cole (OK), chairman of the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor-HHS-Education; Rep. Ruben Hinojosa (TX), ranking member of the Higher Education and Workforce Training Subcommittee of the Education and the Workforce Committee; Thomas Skelly, former director of the Department of Education’s Budget Service; and Joel Packer, former executive director of CEF.
Earlier that morning, the legislative conference featured two panels of experts discussing “Perception versus Reality: What Do the American People Think About Education?” and “The Evolution and Future of Education Policy.
This year’s gala will be held on October 3, 2017, in historic Union Station in Washington, DC.
Speakers and Events
The Committee for Education Funding holds regular Friday meetings and other events to network, share information, and hear from speakers including House and Senate staff from both sides of the aisle, Administration officials, and outside experts on the education budget, appropriations, and policy issues.
In addition to these meetings, the Committee for Education has also hosted special events including a Presidential Forum featuring representatives of major party candidates, a Budget/Appropriations 101 Workshop explaining the intricacies of the federal budget and appropriations processes, receptions for new members of Congress and Congressional staff, briefings with current and former Congressional committee staff, a forum with education reporters, panels with pollsters and pundits, briefings on the President’s budget the day after its release featuring high level Administration and Congressional staff, a sequester “bake sale,” special research briefings, and an “Education Seeds the Economy” briefing.
Through our 7,000 Twitter followers, we both inform CEF members and reach out to the general public and other organizations/policy advocates. We use Twitter to provide real-time updates from House and Senate education hearings and mark-ups. Our Instagram account features the advocacy activities of our many member organizations.
We continue our close relationships with the Coalition for Health Funding (CHF) and the Campaign to Invest in America’s Workforce. Together with these two coalitions, we co-chair NDD United, a coalition of coalitions, representing a broad spectrum of the domestic community fighting the sequester.