Government Shutdown Could Hinder Academics

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Oluchi Ike, Staff Writer

The Government Shutdown Effect on Schools

By Oluchi Ike

Staff Reporter

The government shutdown could possibly take a toll on public schools. Even though many federal departments and agencies shut down on Tuesday, Oct. 1, public schools still remained open. Most funds public schools and institutes of higher education expect to get for the upcoming academic year have already been approved by Congress but sending almost all of the department’s employees on a forced vacation for over a week may cause delay for schools. Over 14 million students receive student aid in the forms of grants and loans, and if the shutdown is prolonged, the payment of this money could be delayed because there won’t be enough people to process the payments.

According to the U.S. Department of Education, a protracted delay in Department obligations and payments beyond one week would severely curtail the cash flow to school districts, colleges, universities, and vocational rehab agencies that depend on the funds to support their services.

In Washington D.C., students who depend on public libraries, for computers, books, DVDs or other resources may be out of luck unless D.C. mayor Vincent Gray passes a plan to keep city institutions open. Educational government websites such as ED.gov have not been updated due to lack of appropriations and will remain that way until funding is restored.

According to The Washington Post, the FDA will continue “limited activities” at programs that are funded only through industry user fees. Limited staff will be available to maintain critical consumer protection to handle emergencies, civil and criminal investigations, entry reviews, and other public health issues. The FDA will be unable to keep up the majority of food safety and nutrition oversight. The agency was forced to furlough about 45% of its workforce this week.