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
Federal Budget Deadline Looming
Tue, 16 Jan 2018 18:16:06 -0500 W ill there be a government shutdown or will Congress pass another continuing resolution (CR)? The present CR expires on January 19th and it is unlikely that Congress will be able to reach a long-term spending deal by Friday. The CR is funding government operations at 2017 levels and is the third CR since the fiscal year began on October 1, 2017. Standing in the way of a final spending deal includes negotiations on: sequester-level caps for defense and NDD funding for FY 2018, Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals Protection for “DREAMERS” and border wall funding, and expiring authorization for...
New Senators Appointed to Senate HELP Committee
Fri, 12 Jan 2018 09:16:00 -0500 Newly elected Senator Doug Jones (D-AL) and newly appointed (by Mark Dayton, governor of Minnesota) Senator Tina Smith (D-MN) were recently appointed to the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee. In a press release from Senator Patty Murray, ranking member of the Senate HELP Committee, she stated “Senator Tina Smith and Senator Doug Jones both have strong records of standing up for working families, and I’m pleased to welcome them both to the HELP Committee.” The Senate HELP Committee shall be referred all proposed legislation, messages, petitions, memorials and other matters relating to a wide variety of topics....
ETS: Advancing Educational Measurement
Thu, 11 Jan 2018 11:00:48 -0500 The Education Research Update (ERU), recently featured a newly released book, Advancing Human Assessment: The Methodological, Psychological and Policy Contributions of ETS. The publication highlights comprehensive reviews of ETS’s (Education Testing Service) research in technical, substantive and policy areas and explores the organization's focus on, and achievements in, advancing educational measurement. The book is available in print and free of charge as an eBook in PDF and EPUB format.
Preschool Development Grants 2016 Performance Reports
Tue, 09 Jan 2018 09:58:00 -0500 The U.S. Department of Education and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services recently released At a Glance: Preschool Development Grants Program Year 2016 Progress Update, a report that highlights work undertaken by the 18 Preschool Development Grant (PDG) states during 2016. You can review the individual state’s 2016 annual performance reports on the Department of Education’s PDG program website. The Progress Update (covering January 1 to December 31 of 2016) states that all 18 states who received grants have increased access to high-quality programs for four-year olds from low to moderate income families. The update also reports that...
2018 Congressional Calendar
Mon, 08 Jan 2018 11:42:00 -0500 The U.S. Senate 2018 Congressional Calendar was recently released. As previously reported in the Policy Insider, the 2018 Congressional Calendar for the U.S. House of Representatives is also available. As you gear up your advocacy for 2018, keep these calendars handy! Refer to them when setting up meetings with your members of Congress when they are in Washington D.C. and in your home state. A major takeaway is that the Senate will be in session with only four weeks of recess in the first six months of the year and will be in session all of October – a rarity...
OSERS Assistant Secretary Confirmed by Senate
Thu, 04 Jan 2018 11:41:28 -0500 On Thursday December 21, 2017, Johnny Collett was confirmed by the U.S. Senate as the Assistant Secretary for Special Education and Rehabilitative Services (OSERS), U.S. Department of Education. Collett was nominated to serve in this position by President Trump on November 16, 2017. As previously reported in the Policy Insider, the Council for Exceptional Children was pleased to support the nomination of Collett. CEC congratulates Collett on his appointment and looks forward to working together to ensure all children and youth with disabilities have access to the necessary supports and services to attain their developmental and educational outcomes.
There is Still Time to Tell Congress to Invest in Education!
Wed, 20 Dec 2017 11:21:31 -0500 Two weeks ago Congress passed an extension of government funding at the fiscal year (FY) 2017 level that will expire this Friday, December 22. Federal government funding, under the terms of this continuing resolution (CR) will now run out on Friday unless a budget deal is reached. It is unlikely Congress will reach a budget deal by this looming deadline, and therefore may pass a third CR, which would fund the government going into January 2018. Timely funding issues that were originally thought should be included in this overall budget negotiation (DACA and reauthorization of CHIP), are now unlikely to...
Happy Holidays!
Wed, 20 Dec 2017 10:19:25 -0500 Thank you to all CEC members for your advocacy in 2017! It was an event filled year, full of passion for the field and speaking out for children and youth with exceptionalities and the professionals who work on their behalf. CEC won’t be slowing down in 2018 and encourage all advocates to be ready to take action! The Policy and Advocacy team wishes you a happy and healthy holiday season and New Year! We look forward to working together in 2018!
State and Local K-12 Funding Levels Decline
Wed, 20 Dec 2017 10:05:50 -0500 Recently the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities updated its report on state and local education funding, A Punishing Decade for School Funding. The report showed that per pupil education funding in more than half of all states is below the 2008 level. These dismal facts make it clear why federal education funding is so vital and why advocating for these education programs is essential! The report states, “Increasing financial support can help K-12 schools implement proven reforms such as gaining and retaining excellent teachers, reducing class sizes, and expanding the availability of high-quality education.” You can take action now...
House Higher Education Act Rewrite Passed
Mon, 18 Dec 2017 12:16:30 -0500 On December 12 the Promoting Real Opportunity, Success, and Prosperity through Education Reform (PROSPER) Act was approved by the Committee on Education and the Workforce. As previously reported in the Policy Insider, the PROSPER Act, H.R. 4508, was introduced on December 1 as a reauthorization of the Higher Education Act (HEA) of 1965. A total of 63 amendments and motions were offered during the markup, although only a handful of mostly minor amendments were adopted. Some amendments that were adopted include: provisions aimed at shrinking the U.S. Department of Education, speeding up processing applications for debt forgiveness, and combating opioid...