Policy Insider Blog

CEC's Policy Insider

Learn about the special and gifted education issues Congress and the administration are considering by reading CEC's Policy Insider. Sign up today to receive weekly e-mail updates!

CEC is also pleased to offer up-to-date news about federal special and gifted education policy through the Policy Insider Blog. A complement to the weekly e-mail service, CEC’s Policy Insider Blog features regular posts throughout the week, providing you with real-time special ed policy news. 

Questions or comments? Send an e-mail to CEC's Policy and Advocacy Services team.

CEC Policy Insider CEC's source for special education policy news
ESSA Title II, Part A: Uses to Support Teachers
Fri, 30 Sep 2016 10:52:46 -0400 The U.S. Department of Education has published recommendations to support, recruit and retain high quality teachers through the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) funding as seen in new non-regulatory guidance. The guidance offers multiple examples of the use of Title II, Part A funds, including initiatives such as: increased diversity, leadership development, sufficient preparation and mentorship, and equitable access. The U.S. Department of Education recognizes that teachers are a priority in impacting student achievement and understand the importance in providing funding to the profession.
Combat Childhood Violence and Trauma
Thu, 29 Sep 2016 10:16:46 -0400 For the past year, Futures Without Violence has been gathering research, and consulting experts with the help of leaders from the health, education, justice, and child development fields, and support from various organizations including the Council for Exceptional Children to develop public policy solutions to combat childhood violence and trauma. The organization gathered a multi-disciplinary working group to produce a detailed report of recommendations to create public awareness, and promote the cooperation of families, child-serving organizations, and government agencies to prevent childhood violence and trauma and increase the availability of trauma-informed services for children and families.
Clinton Announces Plan for Individuals with Disabilities
Wed, 28 Sep 2016 11:27:53 -0400 Presidential nominee Hilary Clinton recently announced a plan to better serve Americans with disabilities and their families. The plan focuses on ensuring that individuals with disabilities, specifically students with disabilities, are college and career ready. Two highlights of Clinton’s plan are: providing more students with disabilities access to college, and preparing students with disabilities to be independent with knowledge and skills to participate in the workplace. CEC does not take a position to support or oppose any candidate or political party.
Guidance for English Learners
Tue, 27 Sep 2016 10:56:48 -0400 The U.S. Department of Education released new guidance on Monday September 26, for states, districts and schools to improve services specific to student who are English learners (EL). The guidance will help ensure that these students are given the opportunity to be challenged with advanced coursework, as many bilingual students have academic advantages in the classroom. These advantages include literacy development, problem solving-skills and other cognitive areas. The guidance also aims to recognize the diversity within the EL student population, including students with disabilities and students who are long term- EL’s.
Teacher Pay Gap is Wider than Ever
Mon, 26 Sep 2016 09:45:32 -0400 The Economic Policy Institute (EPI) recently released a report highlighting the disparities between teachers’ pay and comparable workers. The report indicates that while the 17 percent relative pay gap may be attributed to a trade-off between wages and benefits, collective bargaining may also help abate the teacher wage gap, and encourage the recruitment and retention of high-quality teachers.
Guidance on Children with Disabilities in Public Virtual Schools
Fri, 23 Sep 2016 09:45:47 -0400 The U.S. Department of Education Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services (OSERS) recently released a Dear Colleague Letter (DCL) regarding virtual public schools to assist local and state educational agencies, and other public agencies with implementing specific requirements outlined in the Individual with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). The DCL issued the guidance to call on states and local agencies to evaluate current policies and procedures to ensure that America’s nearly 6.7 million students with disabilities have access to public virtual schools with high-quality special education and supports.
States Can Use ESSA to Serve High Achieving Students
Thu, 22 Sep 2016 11:03:51 -0400 A newly released report from The Fordham Institute titled, “High Stakes for High Achievers: State Accountability in the Age of ESSA,” gives examples of how state level leaders can redesign school accountability systems to better serve high achieving and gifted students. Currently, a majority of state school systems do not focus on, or even provide adequate academic challenges, for their high achieving students. With ESSA there will be new opportunities to bring high achieving students the deserving attention in the classroom. This report reviews both the current system’s lack of accountability, which can be detrimental to high achievement students, as...
Decline of Teacher Enrollment
Wed, 21 Sep 2016 10:38:02 -0400 Did you know that nationwide the enrollment for teacher preparation programs has decreased by 36% over the past 7 years? The Center for American Progress has released a report that tells of these alarming statistical differences, as well as diving into the reasons why this may be occurring. The report, Educator Pipeline at Risk, Teacher Labor Markets After the Great Recession, also notes that certain subjects are considered to have teacher shortages, including special education. The authors make recommendations to help halt this gradual decline of teacher preparation programs, including increases in compensation and ending seniority-base layoff policies.
ED Releases Regulations to Enact Supplement-Not-Supplant Title I Provision
Wed, 21 Sep 2016 10:32:12 -0400 The U.S. Department of Education released proposed regulations to enact the requirement in Title I of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA), as recently revised by the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), stipulating that federal funds must supplement, and may not supplant, state and local funds. The proposal will help ensure that federal funds are complementary and do not replace state and local funds in low-income schools, aligning with the longstanding commitment under Title I that the nation's highest need students receive the additional financial support necessary to help them succeed. The proposed regulation would mean up to $2...
The National Center for Education Statistics Releases Status and Trends Report
Tue, 20 Sep 2016 10:34:05 -0400 The Institute of Education Sciences – National Center for Education Statistics recently released Status and Trends in the Education of Racial and Ethnic Groups 2016, a report detailing the educational progress and challenges students face in the United States by race and ethnicity. The report reveals that 13%, or about 6.4 million children and youth ages 3 to 21 were served under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) in 2012-2013. The percentage of students served under IDEA was highest for American Indian/Alaska Native students (16%), followed by Black students (15%), White students, and students of two or more races...