Advocacy Update

There’s Still Time to Contact Your Representatives!

President Trump’s recent budget asked for a complete elimination of Title II, Part A funds for FY 2018 and to halve the amount of funds appropriated for FY 2017. This funding helps states and districts to prepare, train, and recruit high-quality teachers, principals, and other school leaders. Congress is still working on the final funding bills this spring, so please join NASSP by contacting your elected officials to say you support funding for Title II. Make your voice heard by standing with the other 500 individuals who have already participated in NASSP’s newest action alert opposing President Trump’s cuts and asking Congress to fully fund Title II, Part A!

Comment on NASSP’s Position Statement on Teacher Shortage

One of the most difficult tasks principals face is staffing their schools with effective teachers who can help every student achieve their greatest potential. Unfortunately, recent reports point to a growing teacher shortage nationwide. NASSP has released a new Teacher Shortage Position Statement to help address the problem and provide recommendations for policymakers and school leaders to help find new solutions.

The NASSP Board of Directors recently stated its intent to adopt this position statement, and the 30-day public comment period is now open. If you would like to send a comment or recommendation about this statement, please contact Amanda Karhuse, NASSP Director of Advocacy, at karhusea@nassp.org by Friday, April 28.

 

Inside the Beltway

What’s Happening in Washington?

Last week, Secretary DeVos announced a number of individuals who will fill key leadership positions at the U.S. Department of Education (ED). DeVos named former Jeb Bush presidential campaign staffer Josh Venable as her chief of staff, and former Bridgepoint Education general counsel Robert Eitel as senior counselor. Longtime ED employee James Manning was named senior advisor to the undersecretary and acting undersecretary. Former founder of the charter school KIPP Ujima Village Academy, Jason Botel, was named deputy assistant secretary for elementary and secondary education. Botel, who has been serving as a senior education advisor at the White House, is currently slated to speak at NASSP’s 2017 Advocacy Conference.

Why Should Principals Care?

These recent hiring decisions lend some hope that Secretary DeVos may be ready to move forward with staffing crucial positions at ED that have fallen through the cracks during her tenure. Since the beginning of this year, ED has been severely understaffed, limiting the department’s overall effectiveness. Hopefully, these hires will lead to other positions being filled so the department can effectively perform its mission to serve the nation’s students and educators. NASSP will continue to monitor this situation and will highlight future staffing changes.

 

In the Press

NASSP Advocacy Team Discusses Title II Cuts, Education Talk Radio

Last Thursday, the NASSP Advocacy Team, Amanda Karhuse and Zach Scott, joined Education Talk Radio to discuss the importance of Title II funds in ESSA, and what NASSP is doing to protect them in the upcoming budget cycles.

Opportunities for Civic Education in ESSA, Education Commission of the States

Upon its passage, ESSA was touted as a bill that provided new opportunities for schools to focus on a variety of important subjects. This report examines different ways that ESSA can be used to support civic education in schools, including through the use of Title IV funds.

New Bill Allows Pell Grants for Dual-Enrollment Programs, Inside Higher ED

A new bipartisan bill was recently introduced that would allow Pell Grant funding for transferable college credits for students that complete an early-college program from an accredited institution. The bill is sponsored by Senator Rob Portman (R-OH) and Senator Mark Warner (D-VA), and you can find more information about it here.

Examining Different Ways Title II Can Improve Educator Quality, New America

In an interview with Benjamin Riley, founder and executive director of Deans for Impact, New America highlights exciting ways that Title II funds can be used under ESSA. This includes a section specifically on how Title II funds can support residency programs for educators.

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