Join us! CEC’s Policy and Advocacy Team Heads to CEC’s Annual Convention and Expo with a Packed Agenda!

Cropped-CEC2017_horizontalWe hope you will be joining us and thousands of special educators in Boston, Massachusetts for CEC’s Annual Convention and Expo! CEC’s Convention will provide us all with an opportunity to reflect on special education and how we can continue to advance the profession and support better outcomes for children and youth with disabilities and gifts and talents. This year’s convention will offer over 500 sessions, workshops, town halls and more, featuring the most pressing issues in the field, as well as speakers and celebrations you won’t want to miss!

CEC’s Policy and Advocacy team and U.S. Department of Education Officials will bring you the hot policy topics, from budget to high leverage pra (Read more...)

World Autism Day – CEC Celebrates Autonomy and Self-Determination

Niagara falls blueIn conjunction with World Autism Day earlier this month many recognizable locations went blue including Niagara Falls, the Empire State Building, the Great Pyramid of Giza in Egypt and the White House. The White House participated in “Light It Up Blue” by displaying blue lights on the exterior walls of the White House. President Trump stated “My administration is committed to promoting greater knowledge of ASDs and encouraging innovation that will lead to new treatments and cures for autism." Trump’s comments in reference to curing autism noticeably upset self-advocates and the disability community in general, including the Council for Exceptional Children, due to his focus on a cure a (Read more...)

Budget Deadline Looming! Tell Congress to Invest in Education!

CapitolFederal investments in special education and early intervention are critical for future economic growth, yet for several years programs have been the targets of deep cuts.

Government funding expires on April 28, 2017. At the end of December 2016, Congress passed a continuing resolution (CR) that would fund the federal government until April 28, 2017. The CR froze most government funding, including education, at 2016 levels with a 0.19% across the board cut to all programs. Congress is currently on spring recess for two weeks and will return the week of April 24 when both the House and Senate must pass a spending bill for the remaining months of fiscal year 2017, or risk a government shutdo (Read more...)

SCOTUS Rules for a More Demanding Standard

SCOTUS sealThe U.S. Supreme Court recently issued a unanimous opinion in the case, Endrew F. v. Douglas County School District, ruling in favor of the parents of a Colorado student with autism who indicated that the district did not meet the requirements of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) thereby, denying him a free appropriate public education (FAPE). Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. who wrote the opinion said, “when all is said and done, a student offered an educational program providing ‘merely more than de minimis progress from year to year can hardly be said to have been offered an education at all.” For more detailed coverage of the case see CEC’s Policy Insider.

The oral (Read more...)

Friends of IES Request Investments in Research

Institute of Education SciencesCEC joined the Friends of IES in sending a letter to the Chairs and Ranking Members of the Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, HHS, Education and Related Agencies, requesting $670 million be provided for the Institute of Education Sciences (IES) in the Fiscal Year (FY) 2018 appropriations bill. Adequate funding enables IES to best support research, data collection and statistical analysis and dissemination, along with growing evidence to inform effective and efficient educational practice and policy across the nation for children and youth with disabilities and gifts and talents.

You can write to your member of Congress too! Go to CEC’s Legislative Action Center before April 28th to tell (Read more...)

Executive Order Could Lead to Smaller Education Department

Wh_logo_sealPresident Trump recently released an executive order for a “Comprehensive Plan for Reorganizing the Executive Branch,” that seeks recommendations to look for unnecessary programs to cut from the federal government across all agencies. This is in addition to the previously announced proposed budget for the U.S. Department of Education, which could lead to significant cuts to staff and programs within the department. The head of each agency must submit their recommendations within 180 days to Mick Mulvaney, the Director of the Office of Management and Budget. Recommendations must include a proposed plan to reorganize the agency, if appropriate, to improve efficiency, effectiveness and account (Read more...)

Budget Deadline Looming! Write Congress!

CapitolAt the end of December 2016, Congress passed a continuing resolution (CR) that would fund the federal government until April 28, 2017. The CR froze most government funding, including education, at 2016 levels with a 0.19% across the board cut to all programs.

In the next several weeks Congress will need to reach an agreement on spending levels for the remaining months of Fiscal Year 2017. Congress will only be in session for a little over a week between now and midnight on April 28, as they will soon be on spring recess. The Senate and House appropriations committee are planning to have a bill ready by the week of April 24.

Just recently, the Trump Administration provided Congress a list (Read more...)

CEC Advocate Voices Heard- American Health Care Act (AHCA) Withdrawn!

Thanks for Medicaid AdvocacyDue to strong advocacy from CEC advocates and other stakeholders across the nation, the U.S. House of Representatives heard the importance of protecting Medicaid for children and youth with disabilities as they considered their vote on the American Health Care Act (AHCA). As you know from previous updates in the Policy Insider, CEC was concerned that the Medicaid refinancing provision in the AHCA would jeopardize health care for the nation’s most vulnerable children: children with disabilities and children in poverty. Congressional members in the House heard the message from states, school districts and early intervention programs that Medicaid, as currently in law, is cost effective and an (Read more...)

2017 Governor’s Top Education Priorities

Education Commission of the StatesThe Education Commission of the States recently released the Governor’s Top Education Priorities: 2017 State of the State addresses. The resource highlights the top seven education priorities by 42 governors, including examples of how states plan to approach these priority areas. The top seven priorities include: school finance, workforce development and career and technical education, teacher issues, early learning (pre-kindergarten-third grade), postsecondary affordability, technology and school choice. Read the full publication to find out more on the 2017 education trends!

Call for Peer Reviewers – Javits Program FY 2017 Grant Competition

Logo DOEThe U.S. Department of Education (DOE) seeks peer reviewers for the Jacob K. Javits Gifted and Talented Students Education Program. Reviewers should have demonstrated experience in: gifted and talented education, educator professional development, research project design and educating students who are English Language Learners (ELLs), students with disabilities, at-risk students and students who are economically disadvantaged. Although plans are underway for the competition, program appropriations for FY 2017 are not yet final. To apply send a resume to Javitsapplication@ed.gov by April 15, 2017.