E-Update for January 16, 2015

E-Update for January 16, 2015

E-Update for January 16, 2015


Reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education (ESEA) came to the forefront this week with the Secretary of Education Arne Duncan outlining for the Administration key principles that should be a part of a reauthorization bill.  His speech was followed by remarks from both the Chairman and Ranking Member of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee on the Senate floor highlighting their goals for reauthorization of ESEA.  In addition, Senator Alexander, as Chairman of the HELP Committee, released a discussion draft to allow other Senators, as well as the education community, the opportunity to provide input and feedback on the draft bill as part of the reauthorization process.


On January 20, the President will give the State of the Union address at 9 pm.

On January 21, the Senate HELP Committee will hold its first hearing of the new session on “Fixing No Child Left Behind,” with a focus on testing and accountability. The hearing is set to take place at 10am in 430 Dirksen Senate Office Building. Details here.

On January 21, the Alliance for Excellent Education will host a webinar on “The Common Core State Standards and Equity: Educators Tell Their Stories.” The webinar will focus on the intersection of the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) and equity. Bob Wise will moderate a conversation with three educators as they share lessons they have learned as they implement the CCSS and the ways in which they are providing all students, especially those who struggle, with preparation for life after high school. They will discuss the ways in which they are ensuring equity and mastery for all students. Panelists will also address questions submitted by viewers from across the country. Register here.

On January 22, Representative John Kline, chairman of the House Education and the Workforce Committee, and AEI’s Rick Hess will discuss what’s on the docket for education reform in the new Congress. With both the US House of Representatives and Senate under unified Republican control, the question of what Republican leaders hope to accomplish in the 114th Congress is timely and important. During this AEI event, Representative John Kline (R-MN), chairman of the House Committee on Education and the Workforce, will discuss the need to replace the No Child Left Behind Act and strengthen higher education, outline his education reform priorities, and challenge the Obama administration and both parties in Congress to work in good faith to improve education for all Americans. Register here.

U.S Department of Education

U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan Calls for Strong Education Law That Protects All Students, Ensures High-Quality Preschool, Supports Bold State and Local Innovation: U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan laid out his vision for the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) that continues a focus on the nation’s most vulnerable students on January 12. Duncan called for scrapping No Child Left Behind and replacing it with a version that not only prepares children for college and careers, but also delivers on the promise of equity and real opportunity for every child – including minority students, students with disabilities, low-income students, and English language learners. In his speech, Duncan called for Congress to improve access to high-quality preschool in the law. He also announced that President Obama plans to include an extra $2.7 billion in his budget proposal for schools, including $1 billion for schools that serve the most vulnerable children. Duncan also proposed new steps to reduce the burden of testing and test preparation on classroom time and to limit unnecessary testing in schools – without sacrificing annual statewide assessments that give educators and parents the information they need to help every child be successfu­­l. Duncan called for Congress to ensure that funds are distributed among schools so that all students have access to excellent teaching and resources like technology, instructional materials, and safe facilities. Duncan also pushed for more support for states and districts that pursue bold innovations and act on evidence about what works. Watch Secretary Duncan’s speech here.
January 12, 2015

President Obama Unveils Next Steps on Student Privacy: President Obama called for a series of bills to protect student privacy and safeguard student data at a speech at the Federal Trade Commission on January 12. The President released a new legislative proposal designed to provide teachers and parents with the confidence they need to enhance teaching and learning with the best technology — by ensuring that data collected in the educational context is used only for educational purposes. This bill, modeled on a landmark California statute, builds on the recommendations of the White House Big Data and Privacy review released earlier this year. It would prevent companies from selling student data to third parties for purposes unrelated to the educational mission and from engaging in targeted advertising to students based on data collected in school. Read President Obama’s speech here.
January 12, 2015

Congressional Headlines

Chairman Alexander Announces Plan to Fix No Child Left Behind: U.S. Senate education committee Chairman Lamar Alexander (R-TN) announced on the Senate floor his plans to fix the No Child Left Behind law and send a bill to the Senate floor within the first few weeks of 2015. In his speech, Alexander outlined his plan to gather input from all sides and to further a bipartisan process. He noted his intention to restore responsibility to states and local communities. Alexander also released a staff discussion draft of his bill to fix the problems with No Child Left Behind (NCLB) to begin discussion with his Senate colleagues, and also to solicit public feedback on the proposed draft.
January 13, 2015

Ranking Member Murray Outlines Priorities, Calls for Bipartisan Fix to Broken No Child Left Behind Law: Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee Ranking Member Patty Murray (D-WA) delivered remarks on the Senate floor on fixing the broken No Child Left Behind law on January 14. In her speech, Murray outlined her principles for fixing the law, including working to reduce redundant and unnecessary testing, holding schools and states accountable for the progress of students, investing in schools and ensuring they have the resources they need, and expanding access to early childhood education. Murray also called for Republicans and Democrats to put partisanship aside and work together on a bill that ensures every student has access to a quality education.
January 14, 2015

New Legislation

H.R.210 : Student Worker Exemption Act of 2015
Sponsor: Rep Meadows, Mark [NC-11] (introduced 1/8/2015)

H.R.242 : Affordability for Constant and Continual Education to Enhance Student Success Act
Sponsor: Rep Sanchez, Loretta [CA-46] (introduced 1/9/2015)

H.R.275 : To establish a commission to identify and examine issues of national concern related to the conduct of intercollegiate athletics, to make recommendations for the resolution of the issues, and for other purposes.
Sponsor: Rep Rush, Bobby L. [IL-1] (introduced 1/12/2015)

H.R.346 : To improve the financial literacy of students.
Sponsor: Rep Cartwright, Matt [PA-17] (introduced 1/14/2015)

H.R.374 : To establish an Early Learning Challenge Fund to support States in building and strengthening systems of high-quality early learning and development programs, and for other purposes.
Sponsor: Rep Himes, James A. [CT-4] (introduced 1/14/2015)

H.R.375 : To establish a competitive grant program assisting the development of innovative early learning curricula for low-income children.
Sponsor: Rep Himes, James A. [CT-4] (introduced 1/14/2015)

H.R.386 : To provide student loan forgiveness for American Indian educators teaching in local educational agencies with a high percentage of American Indian students.
Sponsor: Rep Ruiz, Raul [CA-36] (introduced 1/14/2015)

H.RES.26 : Strongly supporting the quality and value of diversity and innovation in the Nation’s higher education institutions, and strongly disagreeing with the President’s proposal to create and administer a Postsecondary Institution Ratings System.
Sponsor: Rep Goodlatte, Bob [VA-6] (introduced 1/12/2015)

S.130 : A bill to amend part B of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act to provide full Federal funding of such part.
Sponsor: Sen Vitter, David [LA] (introduced 1/8/2015)

S.144 : A bill to prohibit the Federal Government from mandating, incentivizing, or making financial support conditioned upon a State, local educational agency, or school’s adoption of specific instructional content, academic standards, or curriculum, or on the administration of assessments or tests, and for other purposes.
Sponsor: Sen Crapo, Mike [ID] (introduced 1/9/2015) 

The articles published in this newsletter are intended only to provide general information on the subjects covered. The contents should not be construed as legal advice or a legal opinion. Readers should consult with legal counsel to obtain specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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