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. 

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CEC Policy Insider CEC's source for special education policy news
Congress Passed FY 15 CRomnibus: Increased Funds for IDEA and Javits!
Wed, 17 Dec 2014 15:08:56 -0500 CEC’s advocacy voice was heard! While most education programs were level funded at FY 14 amounts, both special and gifted education enjoyed increases. Congress passed a trillion dollar spending bill to fund the federal government through September 2015, adverting a government shutdown. The CRomnibus combines the merger of 11 individual spending bills that fund the government through the fiscal year – an omnibus – with a continuing resolution (CR) that will provide only short term funding for Homeland Security at FY 14 levels. The following CEC supported programs received increases while all others (IDEA and special education research) were level...
Stepping Up Early Childhood Development: An Investment for Life
Wed, 17 Dec 2014 15:02:34 -0500 A child’s earliest years present the best window of opportunity to ensure good outcomes later in life. Early childhood development programs that include education, health, nutrition and social protection components have proven to be effective in several countries, but despite this growing evidence, more than 200 million children in developing countries under the age of 5 will not reach their development potential. CEC was invited to participate and attended the event. The panel discussed how to use the evidence to influence policy makers and scale up investments moving forward to ensure that children not only survive their early years, but...
Early Learning - Secretary's Priority for Discretionary Grants
Wed, 17 Dec 2014 10:17:55 -0500 The Secretary of Education has released final priorities which may be used across the Department of Education’s discretionary grant programs to incentivize actions and give preference to applicants without making additional rule making. A notice of proposed priorities and definitions (NPP) was published in the Federal Register on June 24, 2014 (79 FR 35736). The document contained background information and reasons for proposing the particular priorities and definitions. In response to our invitation in the NPP, more than 1,600 parties submitted comments on the proposed priorities and definitions. The early learning priority supports projects that are designed to improve early...
Charter School Program Guidance On Preschool
Tue, 16 Dec 2014 22:00:27 -0500 In November, the Department of Education’s Office of Innovation and Improvement released Frequently Asked Questions on the Use of CSP Funds to Support Preschool Education, non-regulatory guidance on the circumstances under which Charter School Program (CSP) funds may be used to support preschool education. The Department has determined that under new authority in the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2014, CSP grantees may use funds to support preschool education in Stateswhere preschool is part of elementary education under State law, as well as in States where it is not part of this definition provided that the preschool program is offered as part...
Training and Information for Parents of Children with Disabilities--Parent Training and Information Centers
Tue, 16 Dec 2014 21:41:58 -0500 Training and Information for Parents of Children with Disabilities--Parent Training and Information Centers Notice inviting applications for new awards for fiscal year (FY) 2015. Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) Number: 84.328M Applications Available: December 11, 2014. Deadline for Transmittal of Applications: February 9, 2015. Deadline for Intergovernmental Review: April 10, 2015. Purpose of Program: The purpose of this program is to ensure that parents of children with disabilities receive training and information to help improve results for their children. The purpose of this priority is to fund 41 Parent Training and Information Centers (PTIs) designed to meet the information...
State Personnel Development Grants Program
Tue, 16 Dec 2014 21:32:01 -0500 The following Notice of Applications for New Awards; State Personnel Development Grants (SPDG) Program was published in the Federal Register on Monday, December 15, 2014. Notice inviting applications for new awards for fiscal year (FY) 2015. Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) Number: 84.323A. The purpose of this program, authorized by the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), is to assist State educational agencies (SEAs) in reforming and improving their systems for personnel preparation and professional development in early intervention, educational, and transition services in order to improve results for children with disabilities. DATES: Applications Available: December 15, 2014. Deadline...
18 States Awarded New Preschool Development Grants
Wed, 10 Dec 2014 16:30:05 -0500 U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan and Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Burwell announced today that 18 states have been awarded grants, totaling more than $226 million, under the Preschool Development Grants program. Two types of Preschool Development Grant awards have been made. The first category is Development Grants for states that serve less than 10 percent of 4-year-olds to expand access to preschool. Five states are receiving these awards: Alabama, Arizona, Hawaii, Montana and Nevada. The second type of award is called an Expansion Grant, which is for states that serve 10 percent or more of 4-year-olds. Thirteen...
New Federal Guidance on Communication Access
Wed, 10 Dec 2014 13:43:14 -0500 The U.S. Department of Education's Office for Civil Rights and Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services, together with the U.S. Department of Justice's Civil Rights Division, issued joint guidance about the rights of public elementary and secondary students with hearing, vision, or speech disabilities to effective communication. The guidance, in the form of a letter to educators with an attached Frequently Asked Questions document, is intended to help schools understand and comply with federal legal requirements on meeting the communication needs of students with disabilities. This document focuses on the different approaches used by the IDEA on the one...
Secretary Arne Duncan and U.S. Attorney General Eric H. Holder announced the release of a Correctional Education Guidance Package
Wed, 10 Dec 2014 13:29:35 -0500 Secretary Arne Duncan and U.S. Attorney General Eric H. Holder announced on Monday the release of a Correctional Education Guidance Package to help states and local agencies aimed at helping states and local agencies strengthen the quality of education services provided to America’s estimated 60,000 young people in confinement every day. This guidance package builds on recommendations in the My Brother’s Keeper Task Force report released in May to “reform the juvenile and criminal justice systems to reduce unnecessary interactions for youth and to enforce the rights of incarcerated youth to a quality education.” The guidance package includes four components:...
Kline Selected to Serve as Committee Chairman of the House Education and the Workforce Committee
Wed, 10 Dec 2014 13:13:10 -0500 Rep. John Kline (R-MN) was selected by his colleagues to serve as chairman of the House Education and the Workforce Committee in the 114th Congress and issued this statement with the start of this new role: I am humbled by the opportunity to continue leading this great committee. Significant challenges face our classrooms and workplaces, challenges that have persisted for far too long. Fixing a broken K-12 education system, promoting certainty and flexibility in our nation's workplaces, and strengthening higher education are all national priorities that will remain at the forefront of the committee's agenda. The American people want us...