Senate Marks up ESEA

The Senate HELP Committee met on April 14, 15 and 16 to consider amendments for the bipartisan ESEA reauthorization, The Every Child Achieves Act of 2015. Based on the amendments adopted, almost every currently funded program would be reauthorized. Among programs whose authorizations were added back during the markup are: physical education, Project SERV, education technology, I3, ready-to-learn television, grants for AP/IB tests, STEM, Javits gifted and talented, 21st century community learning centers, and early education. Below is a partial list of amendments of interest to PreK-12 publishers. In the coming weeks, AAP staff will continue to monitor and report on any new ESEA developments in the Senate and House.

  • Title 4.1, Physical Education: Would provide grants to LEAs and CBOs to improve physical education programs. (Passed voice vote)
  • Title 1.1, Testing: Would provide competitive grants to states to work with institutions of higher ed to improve the quality, validity or reliability of state assessments; to develop or improve assessments for students with disabilities; to measure student growth over time; to evaluate student achievement through new assessments, such as competency-based models, computer adaptive test, or portfolios. States can also use funding under this section to audit their state assessments. (Passed 22-0)
  • Title 5.1, I-TECH (Innovative technology expands children’s horizons): Would provide grants to SEAs, LEAs, and schools to use technology to improve college and career ready, skills of teachers and school leaders, and increase effectiveness of entire education system. (Passed voice vote)
  • Title 1.4, Data Collection: SEAs would assess its data collection system for collecting data from LEAs and change the system in order to decrease the burden on LEAs. (Passed voice vote)
  • Title 6.1, Weighted Student Funding: Would create a pilot program that gives LEAs the flexibility to consolidate federal, state, and local funding to create a single school funding system based on weighted per pupil allocation for low-income and disadvantaged students. (Passed voice vote)
  • Title 2.1, Ready-to-Learn Television: Would provide grants to develop, produce and distribute education and instructional video programming for preschool and elementary school students and their parents. (Passed voice vote)
  • Title 1.1, Assessment Pilot: Clarifies that applications are to be meet requirements; other clarifying language. (Passed 22-0)
  • Title 1.1, Assessment: Academic assessments will evaluate if student is on grade level; what grade level they perform at; rule of construction to not prohibit state computer adaptive assessments. (Passed voice vote)
  • Title 2.1, Accelerate Learning: Grant programs to pay for AP/IB tests and to create/support accelerated learning programs and ensuring access, quality staff. (Passed voice vote)
  • Title 2.2, STEM Instruction and Student Achievement: Improving STEM instruction/achievement; STEM Master Teacher Corps. (Passed 12-10)
  • Title 1.1, Parent/Guardian Rights: Nothing in federal law preempts state/local law re: parent/guardian decision on child’s participation in statewide academic assessments. (Passed voice vote)
  • Title 2.1, Javits: Amends Title II to include the Javits Gifted/Talented Students Education Act of 2015. (Passed voice vote)
  • Title 4.1, 21st Century Community Learning Centers: Amends Title IV to reinstate 21st Century Learning Communities, allows extended learning time AND after-school. (Passed voice vote)
  • Title 5.1, Early Education: Amends Title V to authorize early learning alignment and improvement grants. (Passed voice vote)
  • Title 5.3, Literacy and Arts Education: Amends Title V to establish a program for literacy and arts education. (Passed voice vote)

For a side-by-side comparison of NCLB, the House’s Student Success Act, and the Senate bill (without amendments), visit AASA.

Education Policy