Yesterday, the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs held an Oversight Hearing on the President’s FY2016 Budget Request for Indian Programs.

The witnesses were:

The Honorable Kevin Washburn
Assistant Secretary- Indian Affairs-U.S. Department of the Interior
View Testimony

The Honorable Yvette Roubideaux
Senior Advisor to the Secretary on Native Americans and Alaskan Natives-U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
View Testimony

Mr. Rodger J. Boyd
Deputy Assistant Secretary, Office of Native American Programs-U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development
View Testimony

You can watch the hearing here, and an excerpt from Assistant Secretary Washburn:

In today’s global economy, a high quality education is no longer just a pathway to opportunity—it is a prerequisite to success.  President Obama set out a vision for a 21st century education system, grounded in both high academic standards and tribal values and traditions.  The Indian Affairs’ budget proposes a $1.0 billion investment in Indian education to support a comprehensive transformation of the Bureau of Indian Education.  The proposal recognizes the progress in self-governance in Indian education reflected in the fact Tribal Nations have contracted to run more than two-thirds of Federal Indian schools. 

To view the BIA’s 2016 budget in detail, click here.  An excerpt:

Tribal Education Departments (TEDs) [$2,000,000]:

Tribal Education Departments (TEDs) provide a multitude of services to promoting tribal educational priorities. The goal of these funds is to build the capacity of TEDs so they can coordinate educational services within reservations to better serve all tribal members. These funds will create opportunities to strengthen TED engagement with the multitude of other school systems operating within tribal reservations. These funds would be directed to strengthen the management and oversight of the education programs including BIE funded schools, school operations, adult education, scholarships, and other programs funded by the tribe and other federal agencies, under their jurisdiction. A first step for many tribes is the adoption and updating of tribal education codes to align a tribal education vision with policy. Two million dollars are requested to prioritize tribes with more than three BIE-funded schools on their reservation to establish a tribally managed school system.