E-Update for the Week of July 13, 2020
- This week, the White House called attention to the importance of reopening schools for in-person classes this fall through a series of events, briefings, and statements.
- On July 7, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) authored an Op/Ed in USA Today advocating, “any additional financial relief considered by Congress to businesses to aid in the economic recovery should prioritize child care providers and schools.”
- On July 7, attorneys general for Michigan, California, the District of Columbia, Maine, New Mexico, and Wisconsin filed a complaint against the interim final rule issued by USED outlining how schools could comply with the equitable services requirement for funding included in the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act.
Coronavirus (as related to education issues):
Note that all information related to the coronavirus (or COVID-19) is up to date as of July 10. Given the fast-moving nature of congressional and Administrative actions to address the growing pandemic, we will do our best to update this information as quickly as possible.
House higher education panel explores future of postsecondary education: The House Education and Labor Subcommittee on Higher Education and Workforce Investment held a hearing titled, “A Major Test: Examining the Impact of COVID-19 on the Future of Higher Education.” The hearing focused on the pronounced effects of COVID-19 on higher education and considered the role of Congress in supporting students and institutions of higher education navigating the challenges exacerbated by the pandemic. During the hearing, Subcommittee Chairwoman Susan Davis (D-CA) advocated for funding included in H.R. 6800, the “HEROES Act” – which is the House Democratic proposal for additional emergency funding in response to COVID-19 – and greater federal relief to protect students and taxpayers. In response, Subcommittee Ranking Member Lloyd Smucker (R-PA) stated that Congress’s work is not done in responding to the pandemic; however, he noted that in contrast to the HEROES Act “Committee Republicans continue to support reforms that strengthen innovation and completion, modernize federal student aid, and promote student opportunities.” Video of the hearing is here. House Subcommittee Chairwoman Susan Davis’s (D-CA) opening statement is here. House Subcommittee Ranking Member Lloyd Smucker’s (R-PA) opening statement is here.
July 7, 2020
Top Republican argues for additional federal relief and focus on schools, child care providers: House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) authored an Op/Ed in USA Today advocating, “any additional financial relief considered by Congress to businesses to aid in the economic recovery should prioritize child care providers and schools.” In the Op Ed, he went on to say, “We now see a looming crisis for schools and child care. If it’s left unaddressed, it will exacerbate the economic crisis caused by the pandemic by preventing parents across the country from returning to work and continue to widen the socioeconomic gap.” Specific to child care, the Minority Leader expressed, “There is an important role for Congress to play in alleviating the stress on our families. We should begin by addressing the shortage of child care options by working to keep existing providers in business and encouraging new child care providers, including home-based providers, to start up in as safe and healthy a way as possible.” The Op/Ed is here.
July 7, 2020
White House goes all in for school reopening, Trump critiques CDC guidance: This week, the White House called attention to the importance of reopening schools for in-person classes this fall through a series of events, briefings, and statements. White House fact sheet on the Trump Administration’s support for the reopening of schools is here. These efforts included:
- On July 7, The White House hosted a summit on Safely Reopening America’s Schools as part of a dialogue with state, local, and tribal leaders, educators, and families to discuss the importance of reopening America’s schools in a safe way. During the summit, President Donald Trump delivered remarks stating, “We want to reopen the schools. Everybody wants it. The moms want it, the dads want it, the kids want it. It’s time to do it.” S. Department of Education (USED) Secretary Betsy DeVos also stated at the summit, “It’s clear our nation’s schools must fully reopen and fully operate this school year. Anything short of that robs students, not to mention taxpayers, of their futures — and their futures represent our nation’s future. So, it’s not a question of “if”; it’s just a question of “how.” The President was also joined at the summit by Vice President Mike Pence, First Lady Melania Trump, Second Lady Karen Pence, White House Coronavirus Task Force Coordinator Dr. Deborah Birx, and U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Alex Azar. Video of the full summit is here. President Trump’s remarks are here.
- On July 7, Vice President Pence led a briefing with Governors, the White House Coronavirus Task Force, USED Secretary DeVos, and HHS Secretary Azar on COVID-19 response and best practices to safely reopening America’s schools. The discussion centered on addressing both the holistic health and the learning objective of students. A readout from the briefing is here.
- On July 8, President Trump tweeted, “In Germany, Denmark, Norway, Sweden and many other countries, SCHOOLS ARE OPEN WITH NO PROBLEMS. The Dems think it would be bad for them politically if U.S. schools open before the November Election, but is important for the children & families. May cut off funding if not open!” USED Secretary DeVos said in response on July 9 that, “We are not suggesting pulling funding from education, but instead allowing families, take that money and figure out where their kids can get educated if their schools refuse to open. Schools can reopen safely, and they must reopen.” President Trump’s tweet is here. Politico article, including Secretary DeVos’s statement, is here.
- On July 8, Vice President Pence and the White House Coronavirus Task Force held a press briefing as part of the effort to focus on safely reopening America and reopening America’s schools. During the briefing, Vice President Pence was asked about another tweet from President Trump earlier in the day stating that, “I disagree with @CDCgov on their very tough & expensive guidelines for opening schools. While they want them open, they are asking schools to do very impractical things. I will be meeting with them!!!” In response, the Vice President stated that, “The [Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)] will be issuing new guidance next week — part of a five-part series of recommendations that will give all-new tools to our schools.” However, CDC Director Dr. Robert Redfield clarified later that the CDC will be providing additional information. President Trump’s tweet is here. A readout from the briefing is here. LA Times article is here.
- In response to the Trump Administration’s push for schools to reopen, House Education and Labor Committee Chairman Bobby Scott (D-VA) stated, “Reopening schools now, without more investment, presents serious risks to the health and safety of our students and educators…What’s worse, the administration is now threatening to ignore health experts and issue their own ‘less restrictive’ guidelines, prioritizing politics over the health and safety of students, parents, and educators. This move is not only irresponsible, it is dangerous.” Additionally, Senate HELP Committee Ranking Member Patty Murray (D-WA) stated, “As a mom, and a grandmother, the thought of using students’ safety as a bargaining chip is truly appalling—and I hope that Senate Republicans don’t stoop to that level just because the President wants to.” House Education and Labor Committee Chairman Bobby Scott’s (D-VA) statement is Senate HELP Ranking Member Patty Murray’s (D-WA) statement is here.
U.S. Department of Education (USED):
OCR offers guidance for colleges and protecting civil rights in time of COVID: USED’s Office for Civil Rights (OCR) released a webinar providing an overview of the resources OCR has issued to assist schools and institutions of higher education as they navigate the COVID-19 pandemic. During the webinar, OCR Assistant Secretary Kenneth Marcus stated, “Protecting students’ safety and well-being includes compliance with the requirements of federal civil rights law. Our students’ rights must be protected even during times of national emergency although we may do so in ways that are different than during other times.” OCR staff highlighted several documents issued by OCR on protecting the civil rights of students during the COVID-19 emergency, including several fact sheets and questions and answers documents for schools and institutions of higher education. The webinar and links to resources released by OCR are here.
July 9, 2020
Six attorneys general sue USED over equitable services rule: Attorneys general for Michigan, California, the District of Columbia, Maine, New Mexico, and Wisconsin filed a complaint against the interim final rule issued by USED outlining how schools could comply with the equitable services requirement for funding included in the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act. Generally, equitable services refers to a provision under Title I of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) that requires local educational agencies (LEAs) to provide services to eligible private school students and their teachers that are equal in comparison to those provided eligible public-school children and their teachers. However, the Department issued an interim final rule on July 1 requiring LEAs to choose from two options for providing equitable services with CARES Act funding: (1) distribute funds only to Title I-participating public schools and calculate a share for equitable services based on the same amount for equitable services they set aside for the 2019-2020 school year or based on low-income enrollment at private schools, or (2) distribute funds based on total student enrollment in public and private schools, regardless of student need. The attorneys general assert that the methodology the Department is requiring for LEAs to allocate funds contradicts the CARE Act’s requirements. Press release is here. Complaint is here.
July 7, 2020
U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS):
Trump Administration bars international students from remaining (or returning) to United States if only taking online courses: U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) announced that it plans to offer a temporary final rule for the fall 2020 semester outlining that nonimmigrant students attending schools operating entirely online may not take a full online course load and remain in the United States. The U.S. Department of State will not issue visas to students enrolled in schools and/or programs that are fully online for the fall semester nor will U.S. Customs and Border Protection permit these students to enter the United States. Active students currently in the United States enrolled in such programs must depart the country or take other measures, such as transferring to a school with in-person instruction to remain in lawful status. Additionally, schools are to report to ICE if they will offer entirely online classes or programs or will not reopen for the fall 2020 semester by July 15. Press release is here. ICE’s Frequently Asked Questions for Student and Exchange Visitor Program stakeholders is here.
In response to the announcement, Harvard University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) filed a lawsuit on July 8 against the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and ICE in an attempt to prevent the federal policy from being finalized and implemented. After Harvard University and MIT filed their lawsuit, a growing number of colleges and universities around the country announced that they have begun or are actively planning to take legal action. A hearing on Harvard University and MIT’s request for a preliminary injunction and temporary restraining order has been scheduled for July 14. Complaint is here. MIT press release on filing the lawsuit is here. MIT press release on support from other universities is here.
On July 9, 98 Democratic Members of Congress joined in sending a letter to DHS and ICE urging the agencies to withdraw the guidance. “ICE’s announcement of their plans to force out or deport international students who remain at U.S. colleges and universities and who are taking a full online course load is cruel and unconscionable,” the lawmakers wrote. Letter is here. Press release is here.
July 6, 2020
Budget and Appropriations:
House appropriators approve top line spending levels, includes slight increases for education programs: The full House Appropriations Committee approved by a vote of 29 to 21 the fiscal year (FY) 2021 top spending levels – also known as subcommittee allocations or 302(b)s – for each of its appropriations bills, including the Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies (Labor/HHS). In a statement, House Appropriations Committee Chairwoman Nita Lowey highlighted, “a $2.4 billion increase for the Labor, Health and Human Service, and Education subcommittee to help support working families, improve health security, and build a stronger future for all Americans.” The actual Labor/HHS subcommittee allocation is reduced by $128 million or .1 percent; however, additional funding is made available to allow for the overall increase for the bill as a result of recapturing unspent mandatory funding under the Children’s Health Insurance Program. House Appropriations Committee Ranking Member Kay Granger (R-TX) spoke in opposition to the subcommittee allocations stating, “The additional deficit spending forced into these appropriations bills is short-sighted…These bills are full of controversial policies and questionable spending priorities, similar to the extremely partisan bills that leaders of the Majority party have put on the House floor this year.” The subcommittee allocations are here. House Appropriations Committee Chairwoman Nita Lowey’s (D-NY) opening statement is here. House Appropriations Committee Ranking Member Kay Granger’s (R-TX) opening statement is here.
July 9, 2020
Labor/HHS Appropriations report language released: The House Labor/HHS Appropriations Subcommittee released its FY2021 House Labor/HHS Appropriations Bill, which was followed by the release of the FY2021 Labor/HHS Report on July 12. The FY2021 House Labor/HHS bill provides $73.47 billion for the U.S. Department of Education (USED), which is a $716 million increase above the FY2020 level. On July 7, the House Labor/HHS Appropriations Subcommittee approved the bill along a party line vote of 9 to 6. The full House Appropriations Committee will now consider the bill at a markup on July 13. The FY2021 House Labor/HHS bill is here. The FY2021 Labor/HHS report is here. Press release is here. Video of the Subcommittee markup is here. During the Subcommittee markup, leadership of the full House Appropriations Committee and the Subcommittee delivered opening statements. House Appropriations Committee Chairwoman Nita Lowey’s (D-NY) opening statement is here. House Appropriations Committee Ranking Member Kay Granger’s (R-TX) opening statement is here. House Labor/HHS Subcommittee Chairwoman Rosa DeLauro’s (D-CT) opening statement is here.
Key highlights of the bill include:
- The bill provides a total of $275 million in increases above FY2020 levels across the core early childhood education programs. This includes a $100 million increase for the Child Care and Development Block Grant (CCDBG), $150 million increase for Head Start, and $25 million increase for Preschool Development Grants.
- The bill provides a $254 million increase for Title I above the FY2020 level to bring the total to $16.56 billion. The bill rejects the President’s proposal to consolidate most formula and competitive grant programs authorized by the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), as well as several related programs, into one block grant.
- The bill provides a nearly $200 million increase above the FY2020 level for Special Education Grants to States.
- The bill provides a $150 increase above the FY2020 level for the maximum Pell Grant award for a total of $6,495.
- Policy Provisions: The bill eliminates an authorizing statute provision that prohibits funds from being used to address school segregation. Related to higher education, the bill includes new language that would prohibit funding to implement and enforce the Title IX regulation regarding how schools respond to sexual assault and harassment recently issued by USED Secretary DeVos. Additionally, the bill would newly allow certain incarcerated individuals to receive Pell Grants.
July 12, 2020
Senate Democrats call on Trump Administration to rescind guidance, rules that discriminate against LGBTQ+ youth: Senate HELP Committee Ranking Member Patty Murray (D-WA) led a letter with nine other Democratic Members of the committee to USED Secretary DeVos calling for her to rescind all the rules, guidance, and policies she has issued during her tenure to diminish protections for students based on their sexual orientation or gender identity, in light of the recent Supreme Court decision affirming the rights of LGBTQIA+ people. The Senators wrote, “On June 15, 2020, the U.S. Supreme Court held in Bostock v. Clayton County, Georgia that an employer cannot fire a person because of their sexual orientation or gender identity. This decision affirms that the sex discrimination protections of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (Title VII) apply to the LGBTQIA+ community. The textual analysis that the Supreme Court relied on in concluding that discrimination on the basis of sex includes discrimination motivated by gender identity or sexual orientation applies with equal force to Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 (Title IX) and its protections against sex discrimination in federally funded educational programs and activities.” The Members went on to state, “we ask you immediately review all Department rules, guidance, and policies and rescind any that undermine rights based on sexual orientation and gender identity and, in their place, adopt guidance clarifying Title IX’s protection against discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity, consistent with the Supreme Court’s recent ruling.” Letter is here. Press release is here.
Relatedly, Senate HELP Committee Ranking Member Patty Murray (D-WA) led a letter with nine other Democratic Members of the committee to HHS Secretary Azar urging him to rescind a recent rule excluding LGBTQIA+ patients from the anti-discrimination protections of Section 1557 of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), in light of the recent Supreme Court ruling affirming that sex discrimination protections include protection for the LGBTQIA+ community. The Senators wrote, “In Bostock, the Supreme Court stated unequivocally that discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity necessarily entails discrimination based on sex…Not only does eliminating health care protections for transgender patients run contrary to the ACA’s broad goal of expanding health care to all people, it also conflicts with Supreme Court precedent.” Letter is here. Press release is here.
July 7, 2020
Black congressional leaders outline legislative actions to address systemic racism, oppression: On July 1, the Congressional Black Caucus (CBC) held a press conference to outline its legislative priorities for combatting systemic racism, including disparities in education. According to Roll Call, Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee (D-TX) called attention to a bill which she has sponsored creating a national commission to study reparations — H.R. 40, the “Commission to Study and Develop Reparation Proposals for African-Americans Act.” Additionally, Rep. Jahana Hayes (D-CT) cited legislation to, “provide funding for improvements to public school facilities [H.R. 865, the Rebuild America’s Schools Act], help low-income families access child care [H.R.1364, the Child Care for Working Families Act], and improve college affordability by overhauling federal loan programs and expanding debt forgiveness [H.R.4674, the College Affordability Act] as priorities.” The Roll Call article is here.
July 1, 2020
Trump calls for review of colleges’ tax-exempt status: President Trump in tweets said that he has asked the U.S. Treasury Department to review the tax-exempt status of colleges and universities. The tweets stated, “Too many Universities and School Systems are about Radical Left Indoctrination, not Education. Therefore, I am telling the Treasury Department to re-examine their Tax-Exempt Status and/or Funding, which will be taken away if this Propaganda or Act Against Public Policy continues. Our children must be Educated, not Indoctrinated!” The tweets are here.
July 10, 2020
White House publishes EO on Hispanic Prosperity: President Trump issued an Executive Order (EO) on the White House Hispanic Prosperity Initiative – which will be housed at USED – to improve Hispanic Americans’ access to educational and economic opportunities. The EO created the White House Hispanic Prosperity Initiative and Interagency Working Group and the President’s Advisory Commission on Hispanic Prosperity. The Commission is charged with improving access to educational, training, and economic opportunities for Hispanic American students by strengthening Hispanic Serving Institutions and promoting options to enhance school choice, personalized learning, family engagement, civics education, and pathways to in-demand jobs, including apprenticeships and work-based learning initiatives. Executive Order is here. White House fact sheet is here.
During remarks on the EO, the President stated, “I’m going to fight to ensure that every Hispanic American parent has the freedom and the right to send your child to the public, private, charter, faith-based, magnet, home, or independent school of your choice.” He went on to say, “One of the most successful educational models is the charter school…As long as I’m President, I will never let your charter schools be taken away from you, be taken down.” President Trump’s statement is here. USED Secretary DeVos’s statement is here.
July 9, 2020
U.S. Department of Education (USED):
OCR assistant secretary to resign: Assistant Secretary Kenneth Marcus for USED’s OCR announced that he will be leaving the Department. Announcing his departure, Assistant Secretary Marcus noted, “Throughout my tenure, @EDcivilrights has reinforced its status as a neutral, impartial civil rights law enforcement agency that fully and faithfully executes the laws as written—no more and no less—focusing carefully on the needs of each individual student.” He went on to say, “As a result, and thanks to the hard work of staff, @Edcivilrights has achieved remarkable things during challenging times, including resolving thousands of civil rights complaints with change, and greatly reducing OCR’s backlog.” Following Assistant Secretary Marcus’s departure, Kimberly Richey, who is currently the principal deputy assistant secretary of civil rights, will lead OCR on an acting basis. Tweets announcing his departure are here.
July 9, 2020
USED to delay 2019 CRDC, will collect data in 2020-2021 school year: USED announced that USED has decided to shift the 2019−2020 Mandatory Civil Rights Data Collection (CRDC) to the 2020−2021 school year recognizing the impact the COVID-19 pandemic has had on State education agencies (SEAs), LEAs, and schools. The CRDC is a biennial survey of public schools to collect data on leading civil rights indicators related to access and barriers to educational opportunity at the early childhood through grade 12 levels. The CRDC will continue as a biennial collection with the next collection following the 2020−2021 school year being the 2022−2023 school year. The notice can be found here. To access supporting statements and forms and instructions, the docket folder can be found here.
Additionally, USED released the list of data elements that OCR is proposing to change from the 2017–2018 CRDC. The list includes additional revisions beyond those proposed by the Department in September 2019 for the 2019-2020 CRDC. The Department noted that comments received for the 2019−2020 CRDC, and USED’s responses to those comments, will now apply to the 2020−2021 CRDC. Comments on the proposed 2020-2021 CRDC data elements and information collection will be accepted until August 6. The list of data elements being proposed for the 2020-2021 CRDC is here (beginning on page 26). The list of data elements that had been proposed for the 2019-2020 CRDC in September 2019 is here (beginning on page 26).
July 6, 2020
U.S. Supreme Court:
SCOTUS rules that employment discrimination limited in religious schools: The U.S. Supreme Court ruled in a 7-2 decision on the combined Our Lady of Guadalupe School v. Morrissey-Berru and St. James School v. Biel cases that “constitutional language that protects religious freedom barred the former teachers from suing their private schools for employment discrimination,” according to Politico. “The religious education and formation of students is the very reason for the existence of most private religious schools, and therefore the selection and supervision of the teachers upon whom the schools rely to do this work lie at the core of their mission,” Justice Samuel Alito wrote in the court’s majority opinion. Justices Sonia Sotomayor and Ruth Bader Ginsburg dissented, arguing the majority’s approach “has no basis in law and strips thousands of schoolteachers of their legal protections.” Politico article is here. House Education and Labor Committee Chairman Bobby Scott’s (D-VA) statement in response to the decision is here. U.S. Supreme Court opinion is here.
July 8, 2020
Upcoming Events (Congressional and Administration):
- On July 13 at 1:00 pm, the full House Appropriations Committee will markup the FY2021 House Labor/HHS Appropriations bill and report. The FY2021 House Labor/HHS Appropriations bill is The report is expected to be released at least 24 hours in advance of the markup. More information and a webcast of the markup are here.
- On July 13 through August 5, a series of National Assessment Governing Board (NAGB) meetings will be convened. Open meetings will be held on the following dates: (1) Assessment Development Committee (ADC) Meeting: July 13 from 3:00 pm to 5:30 pm; (2) Reporting and Dissemination (R&D) Committee Meeting: July 16 from 3:15 pm to 4:00 pm; (3) ADC and R&D Committee Joint Meeting: July 23 from 2:00 pm to 3:00 pm; (4) Full Board Meeting: July 30 from 2:00 pm to 3:30 pm; and (5) Full Board Meeting: July 31, 10:30 am to 2:30 pm. During the Full Board meetings, the Governing Board will take action on the 2025 Strategic Vision and engage in discussion on COVID-19 and policy implications for the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP). A closed meeting of the Nomination Committee will be held on August 5 from 3:00 pm to 4:00 pm. The agenda and notice for the NAGB meetings are here.
- On July 16 at 9:00 am, Politico will hold a virtual discussion to explore how recovery efforts have affected different sectors of the American workforce and what measures lawmakers need to implement to help Americans get back to work. The discussion will feature a keynote conversation with House Education and Labor Committee Chairman Bobby Scott (D-VA). More information and registration are
- On July 23 at 10:15 am, House Education and Labor Committee Chairman Bobby Scott (D-VA) has invited Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Director Robert Redfield, MD, or his designee, to testify before the Subcommittee on Early Childhood, Elementary and Secondary Education at a hearing titled, “Underfunded & Unprepared: Examining How to Overcome Obstacles to Safely Reopen Public Schools.” Chairman Scott has requested the CDC Director Redfield “discuss the immediate needs of K-12 public schools as many districts examine the possibility of reopening in the fall.” The invitation for CDC Director Redfield to testify is A press release on the upcoming hearing is here.
Upcoming Events (Outside Organizations):
- On July 13 and 14, a REMOTE: The Connected Faculty Summit hosted by Arizona State University will be held. The forum will identify and promote best practices, techniques, and tools used by faculty for online and blended learning and will help faculty design the most engaging experience for learners. Over 80 presentations will be given by a group of nationally respected higher education experts. A list of speakers is here. The agenda is here. More information and registration are
- On July 14 at 2:00 pm, AASA: The School Superintendents Association, the Institute for Educational Leadership, the Center on Education Policy, and the National School Boards Association will hold a webinar titled, “Reopening Schools in a Time of Uncertainty: Insights for District Leaders.” The webinar will focus on the issues facing school superintendents and local school boards as they prepare to reopen public schools. Speakers will include Francisco Negron of the National School Boards Association and Noelle Ellerson Ng of AASA. Registration was required by July 9. The webinar will be accessible here.
- On July 15 from 12:00 pm, Education Week will hold the first of a two-part K-12 Solutions Virtual Summit. The summit will help district leaders and educators prepare for the coming school year and discover best practices and innovative solutions directly from K-12 education product and service providers, as well as other district leaders. More information and registration are here.
- On July 15 at 12:00 pm, the NewSchools Venture Fund will hold a webinar titled, “How to Support Students’ Social Emotional and Academic Needs When Schools Reopen.” The webinar will explore findings from a multi-year study about what matters most in supporting students’ social-emotional and academic needs and school leaders will discuss how the lessons apply to reopening plans. More information and registration are here.
- On July 15 at 2:00 pm, Inside Higher Education will hold a webinar to discuss its recent special report titled, “Taking Colleges Online: How Smart Institutions and Their Leaders Can Approach Online Education Now and in a Post Coronavirus World.” The report looks at the unprecedented transition to remote learning made by colleges and universities across the world due to the COVID-19 pandemic and makes recommendations for improving online education. More information is here. The report is
- On July 16 at 11:00 am, the American Enterprise Institute (AEI) will hold a webinar titled, “Poverty in the wake of the pandemic-induced recession.” The webinar will discuss the state of poverty in America during this challenging season, as well as steps policymakers can take to alleviate hardship and increase opportunity in the months and years ahead. More information and registration are here.
- On July 16 at 11:30 am, the America’s Promise Alliance will hold a webinar titled, “How Learning Happens Now.” The webinar will discuss America’s Promise Alliance’s new report titled, “All of Who I Am,” which lifts up the voices of young people who emphasize that supporting their learning means supporting all the dimensions of their lives. During the webinar, adults and young people from three schools utilizing a whole-child approach will be featured. More information and registration are here.
- On July 20 at 1:00 pm, Bellwether Education Partners will hold a webinar titled, “Making Next Year Count: Equity in School Accountability.” Speakers will include Jeb Bush, former Governor of Florida; John B. King, Jr., former U.S. Secretary of Education and President and CEO of The Education Trust; and Carissa Moffat Miller, Executive Director of Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO). The discussion will explore how statewide standards and annual testing should move forward next year and beyond as tools for achievement, transparency, and equity, as well as key ways leaders should make their testing and accountability systems resilient to changing circumstances on the ground. More information and registration are
- On July 21 at 3:00 pm, the Learning Policy Institute (LPI) and EducationCounsel will hold an event titled, “Connecting K-12 and Higher Education Through the Use of Performance Assessments.” The webinar will address why and how to align K-12 performance assessment systems for use in higher education and will focus on why such alignment is critical to support access to higher education for groups historically underrepresented in institutions of higher education. The webinar is part of the Reimagining College Access (RCA) initiative. More information and registration are here.
- On July 22 at 3:00 pm, AEI will hold a webinar titled, “The educational and political implications of COVID-19 on American families.” The webinar will explore whether parents are ready to send their children back to school in the fall and what they think schools should do to ensure the health and safety of children. The webinar will also highlight COVID-19’s educational, political, and economic impact on families. John Bailey, a Visiting Fellow for AEI, will moderate the session. More information and registration are here.
Publications (Congressional and Administration):
- On July 9, the Government Accountability Office (GAO) issued a report titled, “K-12 Education: Characteristics of School Shootings,” which analyzed data on school shootings and school characteristics for school years 2009-2010 through 2018-2019 and conducted a literature review to identify empirical research from 2009 to 2019 that examined discipline approaches in schools. Key findings of the report include that no empirical research directly examines the link between discipline and school shootings and a majority of fatalities are a result of school-targeted shootings, which are more prevalent in wealthier, low-minority areas. In response to the release of the report, House Education and Labor Committee Chairman Bobby Scott (D-VA) stated, “the report findings undermine the Trump administration’s reasoning for scaling back civil rights protections in K-12 schools, particularly Obama-era guidance issued in 2014 to address racial disparities in school discipline practices.” GAO report is here. House Education and Labor Committee Chairman Bobby Scott’s (D-VA) statement is here.
Publications (Outside Organizations):
- On July 9, John Hopkins University released a tracking tool analyzing school reopening plans across the country based on whether or not they address 12 categories: core academics, SARS-CoV2-protection, before- and after-school programs, school access and transportation, student health services, food and nutrition, parent choice, teacher and staff choice, children with special needs/ESL/gifted and twice exceptional, children of poverty and systemic disadvantage, privacy, and engagement and transparency. This analysis explores education recovery plans put forth by states, territories, and national organizations to examine the ways these plans are designed to support students and teachers. The tracker is here.
- On July 9, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce released policy recommendations and private sector solutions to address gaps negatively affecting Black Americans. The paper notes that longstanding race-based education gaps continue to exist and provides solutions to address these gaps. The policy recommendations are here.
- On July 8, the Institute for Justice released a 50-state guide to help policymakers in each state better understand the impact of Espinoza v. Montana Department of Revenue in their state. In Espinoza v. Montana Department of Revenue, the U.S. Supreme Court held that if a state subsidizes private education, it must allow religious schools to participate in programs that provide scholarships to students attending private schools. The guide analyzes each state’s constitution in light of Espinoza Montana Department of Revenue and explains how the ruling impacts policymakers’ ability to enact educational choice programs. The guide is here.
- On July 8, FutureEd released a report titled, “Blueprint for Testing: How Schools Should Assess Students During the Covid Crisis,” outlining how and when states, school districts, and schools should use assessments as they begin to reopen in the fall to gauge student learning, help accelerate students to grade-level performance, and provide systems-level insights into educational recovery. The report includes a detailed timeline with recommendations for when schools should prioritize diagnostic assessments, administer student social-emotional or school culture and climate surveys, conduct interim assessments, and administer statewide summative assessments and publicly report the results. The report is
- On July 7, the American Enterprise Institute (AEI) released a report titled, “College in the time of coronavirus: Challenges facing American higher education.” The report explores how might the uncertainty of the pandemic and the ensuing economic disruption affect higher education this fall, and in the years to come. The report is here.
A bill to direct the Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Communications and Information to establish a pilot program to increase access to internet-capable devices through public-private partnerships, to establish best practices for States and Indian Tribes for reducing the barriers to, and increasing the adoption of, broadband internet access service, and for other purposes.
Sponsor: Rep. Tom O’Halleran (D-AZ)
A bill to establish a rural postsecondary and economic development grant program.
Sponsor: Rep. Elise Stefanik (R-NY)
A bill to authorize funding to expand and support enrollment at institutions of higher education that sponsor construction and manufacturing-oriented registered apprenticeship programs, and for other purposes.
Sponsor: Rep. Angie Craig (D-MN)
A bill to require the Federal Communications Commission to update the national broadband plan, and for other purposes.
Sponsor: Anna Eshoo (D-CA)
A bill to direct the Attorney General to make grants to assist local educational agencies in developing and implementing plans to address cybersecurity threats or vulnerabilities, and for other purposes.
Sponsor: Rep. Josh Harder (D-CA)
A bill to amend the Food and Nutrition Act of 2008 to expand online benefit redemption options under the supplemental nutrition assistance program, and for other purposes.
Sponsor: Robin Kelly (D-IL)
A bill to amend subtitle A of title XX of the Social Security Act to provide for grants to conduct demonstration projects designed to provide eligible individuals with the opportunity to obtain education and training for occupations in the fields of transportation and infrastructure that pay well and are expected to experience labor shortages or be in high demand.
Sponsor: Rep. John Lewis (D-GA)
A bill to require the Secretary of the Treasury to conduct outreach to inform certain individuals of their potential eligibility for the Earned Income Tax Credit and the Child Tax Credit.
Sponsor: Gwen Moore (D-WI)
A bill to amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to provide for youth sports, to amend the Small Business Act to establish a loan program for youth sports providers, and for other purposes.
Sponsor: Max Rose (D-NY)
A bill to amend title 38, United States Code, to authorize veterans who are entitled to educational assistance under the Post-9/11 Educational Assistance Program of the Department of Veterans Affairs to use such entitlement to participate in a career transition internship program for veterans.
Sponsor: Bradley Scott Schneider (D-IL)