09/06/2011 12:05 pm ET Updated Nov 06, 2011

Congress Returns To Face Education Funding Issues And ESEA

Congress returns from its summer recess this week with a full plate of unfinished business on the future of K-12 spending and policy--a tall order in Washington's polarized political climate.

Federal lawmakers, who have already had two protracted battles this year over budget issues, must finish the appropriations bills for fiscal 2012. The budget process is complicated by the work of a new panel created as part of a deal to raise the federal debt ceiling and charged with finding ways to significantly cut the deficit over the next decade.

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