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
Private School Voucher Programs Fail Children with Disabilities and Their Families
Wed, 13 Dec 2017 14:58:18 -0500 Many children, including those with disabilities, attend private schools using public funds through vouchers and education savings accounts (ESA). Many issues have been raised about accountability and transparency of these programs by families, public schools and the education and disability community. At the request of Representatives Mark Pocan (D-WI), Marcia Fudge (D-OH) and Gwen Moore (D-WI), the Government Accountability Office (GAO) examined (1) academic, administrative, and financial accountability mechanisms in private choice programs; (2) information available to the public and families on private choice programs and participating schools; and (3) how parents of students with disabilities are informed about changes...
Two-Week Budget Extension – Tell Congress to Invest in Education!
Wed, 13 Dec 2017 12:54:16 -0500 Last week Congress passed a two-week extension of government funding at the fiscal year (FY) 2017 level. Federal government funding, under the terms of this continuing resolution (CR) will now run out on December 22 unless a budget deal is reached. Hopefully by December 22 leadership will have settled on a budget deal to raise the defense and non-defense discretionary (NDD) cap levels – likely for FY 2018 and FY 2019. Additional timely topics that may be included in this overall budget negotiation are: a decision on emergency funding for disaster relief, DACA, reauthorization of the Children’s Health Insurance Program,...
OSEP Funds Nine Centers and Projects to Support IDEA
Mon, 11 Dec 2017 10:37:00 -0500 The U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP) announced the funding of nine new centers and projects. OSEP distributes discretionary grants to help fund centers and projects specific to special education in order to support research, demonstrations, technical assistance and dissemination, technology and personnel development, and parent-training and information centers. As previously reported in the Policy Insider, three centers specialize in early childhood education. The additional six programs are as follows: The Center for Applied Special Technology (CAST), Inc. received funding for an investment for developing software designed to adapt and customize digital materials for children with...
Committee for Education Funding Budget Book
Fri, 08 Dec 2017 10:24:00 -0500 The Committee for Education Funding (CEF) has released its annual budget book, Education Matters: Investing in America’s Future, Fiscal Year 2018 Budget Analysis. This resource provides access to one of the most useful tools for advocacy, real world examples of the effects of education funding cuts. The articles in CEF’s budget book includes vignettes that thoughtfully demonstrate the impact of different education programs, including early intervention programs and special and gifted education. Deborah Ziegler, CEC’s Director of Policy and Advocacy, was a contributor to the special and gifted education sections of this publication.
Two-Week Continuing Resolution? - Urge Congress to Invest in Education Programs!
Wed, 06 Dec 2017 16:28:50 -0500 On December 2, House Appropriations Committee Chairman, Rep. Rodney Frelinghuysen (R-NJ) introduced a two-week extension of current funding levels that also extends authorization for the expired Children’s Health Insurance Program until the end of the year. This two-week extension of FY 2018 appropriations would ensure that government funding would not expire at midnight this Friday, December 8. Federal government funding, under the terms of the continuing resolution (CR) Congress enacted in September, currently runs out on December 8. It is likely that Congress will pass the two-week CR this week, but still may need more time after that to work...
Higher Education Act Reauthorization Bill Introduced
Wed, 06 Dec 2017 15:19:59 -0500 On Friday December 1, the U.S. House Committee on Education and the Workforce Chair, Rep. Virginia Foxx (R-NC), introduced a bill to reauthorize the Higher Education Act. H.R. 4508, the Promoting Real Opportunity, Success, and Prosperity through Education Reform (PROSPER) Act, includes changes to student loans, grants, and institutional requirements. The PROSPER Act reflects the Republican goal of changing federal higher education assistance to a system of one grant, one loan, and one work-study program. Click here to read more on the bill and explore the resources provided, by the House Republicans on Education and the Workforce Committee, including: the...
CEC Celebrates International Disability Champions!
Wed, 06 Dec 2017 15:16:37 -0500 CEC Celebrates the U.N. International Day of Persons with Disabilities along with the U.S. International Council on Disabilities (USICD). Ambassador Gérard Araud welcomed attendees to Tuesdays USICD’s gala held at the Embassy of France. USICD recognized three individuals in the field for their outstanding policy and practice contributions globally. Senator John Barrasso (R-WY) and the Honorable Judith E. Heuman received the Dole-Harkin Award and Risnawati Utami received the International Advocate Award. CEC congratulates the awardees who have been stalwart champions for equitable opportunities for individuals with disabilities across the globe.
OSERS Nominee Responds to Senate
Wed, 06 Dec 2017 15:14:13 -0500 Johnny Collett, nominee to lead the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services (OSERS) responded to questions by Senators during his confirmation hearing on December 5. In his opening statement Collett said, “The mission of the office which I have been nominated to lead is to ‘improve early childhood, educational, and employment outcomes and raise expectations for all people with disabilities, their families, their communities, and the nation.’ This mission is consistent with what I believe, how I have led, and, frankly, who I am.” In summary, he shared, “I believe that ALL children, youth, and...
CEC Celebrates the 2017 U.N. International Day of Persons with Disabilities
Wed, 29 Nov 2017 09:58:00 -0500 On December 3, CEC will celebrate the U.N. International Day of Persons with Disabilities (IDPD). The 2017 IDPD theme is “Transformation towards sustainable and resilient society for all”. This theme focuses on the enabling conditions for the transformative changes envisioned in the 2030 development agenda for Sustainable Development. The 2030 Agenda pledges to “leave no one behind.” Persons with disabilities, as beneficiaries and agents of change, can fast track the process towards inclusive and sustainable development and promote a resilient society for all. Governments, persons with disabilities and their representative organizations, academic institutions and the private sector need to work...
One Week Until the CR Deadline! Tell Congress to Support Education Programs!
Tue, 28 Nov 2017 12:26:53 -0500 There is only a week left before the December 8 deadline for Congress to pass a fiscal year (FY) 2018 budget, which means now is the time to let your voice be heard! All education advocates need to take action NOW and send a letter to your members of Congress! On Capitol Hill there is a push for parity in raising the non-defense discretionary (NDD) cap by the same amount as the defense cap for FY 2018. Once new caps are set, the funding total is divided among all appropriations bills, followed by negotiations on funding levels for the individual...