Trump Proposes Eliminating TRIO and GEAR UP for State Formula Grant Program

February 12, 2018

On February 12, 2018, the White House released the Trump Administration's Fiscal Year 2019 budget request to Congress. The Administration proposes an overall cut of $7.1 billion or 10.5% in funding to the U.S. Department of Education. Included within that cut is a proposal to consolidate TRIO and GEAR UP into a single state formula grant program to support evidence-based postsecondary preparation programs.

While there are some inconsistencies in the budget materials posted by the Department Document is available for download (.pdf), it appears to include:

  • The ultimate block granting of all TRIO programs into a state formula grant;
  • The immediate elimination of funds for EOC, McNair, Student Support Services and GEAR UP in the 2019-2020 program year with these funds used to "transition into" the block grant.
  • The subsequent elimination of Talent Search, Upward Bound, Upward Bound Math/Science and Veterans Upward Bound.

This notion of transitioning to a state-based formula grant program is reiterated in the budget addendum Document is available for download (.pdf) and budget justification Document is available for download (.pdf), which provides far greater detail into the Department's plan.

While much of this information cannot be reconciled at the present time, one thing is clear — we must engage all who support college access and success to be vocal in opposition to this very real threat. We must make sure that the voices of low-income, first-generation students and students with disabilities are heard in our local communities and on Capitol Hill.

Our Policy Seminar is taking place in about a month in D.C. We need your presence here. Now more than ever.