ESEA re-authorization

I am re-posting an email I received this morning from NSBA about Congress’s vote to re-authorize ESEA and its ties to NCLB:

Good Afternoon! The House Committee on Education and the Workforce will be marking up its version of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) reauthorization bill tomorrow at 10:00 a.m. NSBA received a revised version of the Committee bill this morning and NSBA sent the following letter to the Committee today. NSBA also held a brief conference call with state associations at 1:00 p.m. today.

In addition, the following call to action (below) was sent to all network members with members of Congress on the House Committee on Education and the Workforce. All other network members received this call to action urging them to contact Rep. Kline to express their appreciation for his leadership for introducing the Committee bill and urging that the bill is reported out of committee tomorrow for a full House vote.

We urge you to share the call to action with your membership and to follow-up with a letter to your House Education Committee members (if applicable) and if possible to Chairman Kline. Thank you! Sincerely, Kathleen Branch & NSBA’s Advocacy Team

Call to Action to Network Members: with Members of Congress on the House Committee on Education & the Workforce

Good Afternoon!

Please contact your member of Congress on the House Committee on Education and the Workforce Committee urging for the Committee’s ESEA bill to be reported out of Committee for a full House vote tomorrow. Markup is scheduled on the Committee’s ESEA bill tomorrow, Tuesday, February 28. Background and details are below.

Background

During NSBA’s Federal Relations Network meeting earlier this month, 720 school board members and their state association leaders lobbied their members of Congress to reauthorize the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) this year, consistent with NSBA’s recommendations. The House Committee on Education and the Workforce is scheduled to mark-up its bill on Tuesday, February 28, 2012 at 10:00 a.m. NSBA sent this letter to the Committee today.

The bill would repeal the current accountability (AYP) provisions of the No Child Left Behind Act, the sanctions that go along with it, and many of the other burdensome and costly requirements in the current law. The House bill supports many of the recommendations and priorities of local school boards, with an emphasis on flexibility to States and local school districts in determining how they would define and hold themselves accountable for raising student achievement. We are concerned that certain funding provisions would establish funding caps in the out years tied to cost of living, and excuse States from maintaining their k-12 funding levels from year to year as a condition for receiving federal funds. Simply put, the bill cannot get out of Committee without these provisions; but we believe that our funding concerns can be addressed as the bill moves forward and ultimately, to a House-Senate conference committee (where under the current Senate bill, the Senate would insist on rejecting the House’s funding provisions).

NSBA supports the substantive direction of the bill and would like to see it move as quickly as possible in order to complete the ESEA reauthorization this year. America’s schoolchildren cannot wait any longer. If we wait until next year, school districts in states that received U.S. Department of Education waivers will face more confusion and unnecessary costs if the reauthorization removes many of the requirements that states agreed to and school districts have begun to implement next year in order to obtain the waivers or if the reauthorization adds some different requirements. Further, in states that don’t receive waivers, those school districts will face another year or two of the ever increasing full burdens of the flawed No Child Left Behind Act.

Your Grassroots Action

Since your member of Congress is on the House Education and the Workforce Committee please urge him or her to adopt a Committee bill and report it out for a full House floor vote on Tuesday, February 28.

1. View and personalize our sample letter and e-mail, fax or call your member of Congress and send it today.

2. If possible, also fax a letter of support and/or call Committee Chairman John Kline. Details below.

3. Please forward any feedback and a copy of your correspondence to Kathleen Branch – kbranch@nsba.org.

To Contact Chairman Kline

Please call and/or fax a letter to the House Education and Workforce Chairman John Kline in his Washington, D.C. office.

a. To call Chairman Kline dial (202) 225-2271 and thank him for his leadership for introducing the Committee’s bill to reauthorize the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) and let him know that you are urging for the bill to be reported out of Committee tomorrow for a full House vote.

b. To fax a letter to Chairman Kline, personalize and fax it to: 202.225.2595.

2. Please let us know if you have responded to this call to action by emailing Kathleen Branch, NSBA director of advocacy services at kbranch@nsba.org

Sample Letter to Chairman John Kline

Please include your contact information and fax it to Chairman Kline’s Washington, D.C. office at (202) 225-2595

February 27, 2012

The Honorable John Kline

Chairman, Committee on Education and the Workforce

U.S. House of Representatives

2439 Rayburn House Office Building

Washington, DC 20515

Dear Chairman Kline:

As a school board member for the (list name) school district, in (list city and state), I want to thank you for your leadership in introducing the Committee’s bill to reauthorize the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA).

I support the substantive direction of the bill and would like to see it move as quickly as possible in order to complete the ESEA reauthorization this year. America’s schoolchildren cannot wait any longer. If we wait until next year, school districts in states that received U.S. Department of Education waivers will face more confusion and unnecessary costs if the reauthorization removes the requirements that states agreed to and school districts have begun to implement (in order to obtain the waivers) and if the reauthorization adds some different requirements. Further, in states that don’t receive waivers, those school districts will face another year or two of the ever increasing full burdens of No Child Left Behind Act.

I also support the provisions of the bill that would repeal the flawed accountability (AYP) provisions of No Child Left Behind Act, the ineffective sanctions that go along with it, and many of the other burdensome and costly requirements in current law. In addition, I am in favor of the House bill that supports many of the recommendations and priorities of local school boards, with an emphasis on flexibility to States and local school districts in determining how they would define and be held accountable for raising student achievement. Although I am concerned about removing the state Maintenance of Effort requirement and imposing overly limited funding caps on federal funding, I believe it is important to report the bill out of Committee and address those issues as the legislation moves forward.

With that said, I am urging for Committee’s bill to be reported out for a full House floor vote on Tuesday, February 28. America’s schoolchildren cannot wait any longer. I thank you again for your leadership.

Sincerely, (Your Name)

Thank you for responding to NSBA’s Call to Action.

Sincerely,

Kathleen Branch & the Advocacy Team

Kathleen Branch, MEd, CAE

Director, National Advocacy Services

Office of Federal Advocacy & Public Policy

National School Boards Association

703.838.6735

http://www.nsba.org/advocacy

——————————————-
Kathleen Branch
Director, Advocacy Programs
National School Boards Association
Alexandria, VA

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About Gary M Wolfe

The Author spent 10 years as a member of the Milford Delaware Board Of Education, and is currently seeking the 18th Senatorial seat in the Delaware Legislature.
This entry was posted in Delaware Politics, Education. Bookmark the permalink.

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