Don’t Miss Your Chance to Speak to Congress
March 13 is the deadline to register for the 2017 NASSP Advocacy Conference. Register today to be part of the conference in Washington, D.C., April 24-26. Federal advocacy training, discussions about key education legislation, and meetings with your congressional representatives are just some of the informative and engaging programming features of this year’s conference. (more…)
Help Advocate for Your School
Have you ever wondered how federal dollars and programs can help your school? Are you interested in telling your congressional representatives the challenges you face as an educator? Then join us April 24–26 at the 2017 NASSP Advocacy Conference. This conference brings together state leaders to advocate on behalf of the nation’s school principals. Having these leaders converge on Congress and speak in a unified voice delivers a powerful message to legislators that effective principals are vital to student success. (more…)
SOAR Passes the House
This week, instead of tackling bills concerned with child nutrition or career and technical education—both of which are overdue for reauthorization—the U.S. House of Representatives voted to pass the Scholarships for Opportunity and Results (SOAR) Reauthorization Act. SOAR is a private school voucher program for District of Columbia students. NASSP opposes voucher programs, and as a member of the National Coalition for Public Education, NASSP sent a letter to the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform expressing the harm that would be done to public schools and public school students in D.C. by the voucher program. (more…)
Implementing ESSA Updates
NASSP has joined with other national education organizations to form the State and Local ESSA Implementation Network, which recently sent a letter to Acting Secretary of Education John King urging a timely, fair transition to ESSA and a collaborative process that brings all parties to the table.
Inside the Beltway
What’s going on in Washington? (more…)
On February 9, President Obama released the final budget of his presidency. This comes days after congressional leaders announced that Shaun Donovan, director of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), would not be invited to testify on the FY 2017 budget. As testifying is a tradition typically afforded to the director of OMB, this likely signals a looming budget and appropriations battle in the final year of Obama’s presidency.
The three education investment themes in the president’s budget are:
1) Increasing equity and excellence (more…)
Inside the Beltway
What’s going on in Washington?
Comments were due this week in response to the Request for Information from the U.S. Department of Education on implementing Title I of the new Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). This is one of the first steps in the regulatory process for ESSA, which takes effect on August 1, 2016. NASSP submitted comments along with the National Association of Elementary School Principals (NAESP), which can be viewed online. All comments are public record, so you can also view comments submitted by other organizations and individuals as well. (more…)
On Wednesday at the National Press Club, Education Secretary Arne Duncan delivered a speech that called for reducing state and local correctional expenditures in order to increase teacher salaries in high-poverty schools. Throughout the speech, Secretary Duncan discussed the inseparable link between education and incarceration and reminded the audience that more than two-thirds of state prison inmates are high school dropouts.
Shortly after, the U.S. Department of Education released a state-by-state breakdown of annual correctional expenditures, teacher salaries in high-poverty schools, and the estimated impact of reallocating 21 percent of funding for correctional facilitations towards teacher salaries. By reinvesting these funds, states could increase teacher salaries in high-poverty schools by $15 billion annually, which could help school districts recruit and retain highly qualified teachers in the highest-need schools. (more…)
The Republicans on the House and Senate Appropriations Committees continue to move forward with their goal of passing all 12 appropriations bills before the September 30 deadline, but not without a fight from the White House and Committee Democrats who have serious concerns with the proposed funding levels in the FY 2016 Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education (L-HHS-ED) Appropriations bills. They believe that in order to provide robust funding for education, the sequester caps must be increased by striking a deal similar to the Sen. Patty Murray (D-WA) and Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) agreement in 2013.
For the first time in six years, the House Appropriations Committee marked up the L-HHS-ED Appropriations bill, which was approved on a party-line vote of 30-21 on June 24. The bill would cut funding for the Department of Education by $2.8 billion while also eliminating 27 education programs, including the School Leadership Program, the Striving Readers Comprehensive Literacy Program, School Improvement State Grants, Investing in Innovation (i3), and Preschool Development Grants among others.
The bill does provide small increases for Title I, IDEA, Head Start, Impact Aid, and Charter School Grants to name a few. The Committee for Education Funding (CEF) created a full summary of the House L-HHS-ED bill, which can be accessed here. (more…)
Since the beginning of the 2014-2015 school year, tens of thousands of students across the country have opted out of federally mandated assessments. The opt-out movement has become a way for parents and students to protest the implementation of the Common Core State Standards as well as the overabundance of testing in schools.
One of the key provisions of the No Child Left Behind (NCLB) law requires school districts to maintain a 95 percent assessment participation rate. U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan recently told states they risk losing federal funds if they fall below 95 percent compliance. This could have major implications for low-income and rural school districts that rely heavily on federal funding to hire staff, upgrade schools, and incorporate new programs. (more…)
On April 16, President Obama signed the Medicare Access and Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) Reauthorization Act of 2015 into law. Included in this legislation is a two-year extension of the Secure Rural Schools and Community Self-Determination Act of 2000. This law, which was enacted after rural communities were devastated by logging industry regulations, requires that 15 to 20 percent of the United States Forest Service’s county payments be used for specific purposes. These purposes include supporting or expanding rural schools, improving roads in rural communities, increasing public safety, or developing special projects on federal lands. (more…)