Advocacy Update

Register Today for the 2018 Advocacy Conference

Join principals from across the nation in Washington, D.C., March 19–21, for the 2018 NASSP Advocacy Conference. At this conference, you will have the opportunity to hear from some of the nation’s foremost education thought leaders. You will also receive federal advocacy training and the chance to use that training on Capitol Hill in meetings with your elected representatives in Congress.

Only Federal Grassroots Network (FGN) members may register. Registration for the conference is free, but attendees will be responsible for their hotel and travel costs. For more information, please visit the NASSP Advocacy Conference page. To become an FGN member, click here.

Have Strong Feelings on Teacher Leadership? Let NASSP Know!

Earlier this month, the NASSP Board of Directors stated its intent to adopt a new position statement on Teacher Leadership. This new position statement expresses support for teacher leaders and offers recommendations to federal, state, and local policymakers and school leaders on how to create sustainable and supportive systems for teacher leaders to collaborate with principals for the success of their students.

The position statement is now available for public comment. This is your chance to share your own personal experiences or thoughts on this subject. Comments or recommendations should be sent to NASSP Director of Advocacy Amanda Karhuse at karhusea@nassp.org by December 8, 2017. Feedback will then be incorporated into a final version that the board will approve at their March 2018 meeting.

 

Inside the Beltway

What’s Happening in Washington?

Last week, the Senate passed their tax bill out of the chamber 51-49. The Senate and House will need to conference with one another on a final tax bill that will then need to pass both chambers before heading to President Trump’s desk.

Also last week, Chairwoman Foxx (R-NC) introduced a new Higher Education Act (HEA) reauthorization.

Why Should Principals Care?

The House and Senate will have several different policies in each of their bills that affect education. These include the elimination of the state and local tax deduction—which could have a huge impact on state and local funding for education, a proposal that would allow 529 plans to potentially be used for K-12 schooling, and a deduction previously provided to principals and teachers that allows them to deduct personal dollars spent on classroom expenses or professional development opportunities. You can find more detailed information on these policies here. NASSP will continue to closely monitor this situation as it develops, and you can find updated information in future advocacy updates.

On December 1, Chairwoman Foxx revealed the Promoting Real Opportunity, Success and Prosperity Through Education Reform (PROSPER) Act. This bill would make drastic changes to the loan structure for individuals attending higher education institutions and would completely eliminate Title II of HEA, which addresses teacher and principal preparation programs. You can read the bill here.

 

In the Press

How Does Net Neutrality Affect Public Education? EdWeek

Chairman of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), Ajit Pai, recently announced that he plans on removing a policy known as net neutrality. The policy, passed by former FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler during the Obama presidency, was enacted to ensure that all web content is treated equally by internet service providers (ISP), rather than allowing them to deliver material at faster or slower speeds based on which providers are paying more. This article analyzes the potential impact that revoking net neutrality could have on public education institutions and education as a whole.

Report Finds Voucher Programs are Failing to Inform Parents of Lost Rights, Government Accountability Office (GAO)

One of the main concerns surrounding voucher programs is that they are not required to adhere to certain federal regulations, such as the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). A new report from GAO has found that many voucher programs are not only failing to inform parents of the rights they will lose by moving their children to a private school, but some are also offering inaccurate information on IDEA itself.

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