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
The Need for Local Special Education Administrators
Fri, 16 Nov 2018 12:30:00 -0500 The CEEDAR Center recently published Responding to the Need for New Local Special Education Administrators: A Case Study. As the pipeline of emerging leaders has received scant attention, the case study addresses the shortages of LSEA. Recently, LSEA leadership has become even more important as national attention has focused on student outcomes as well as procedural compliance in special education. Well-prepared LSEAs are able to advise districts on selection of research-based practices, support principals in planning for and implementing these practices, help develop instructional capabilities of staff, consult on implementation of multi-tiered systems for instruction and behavior support, help principals...
GAO Findings on Pre-Employment Transition Services
Thu, 15 Nov 2018 13:30:00 -0500 The GAO recently published the findings on its survey regarding pre-employment transition services for young adults with disabilities. Seventy-four state vocational rehabilitation (VR) agencies responded to GAO's survey. Most reported on the expansion of services to students with disabilities transition under the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA), enacted in July 2014. State agencies also reported serving more students and providing work-based learning experiences and other activities, referred to as pre-employment transition services. The GAO conducted this study as states are required to reserve at least 15 percent of their total State Vocational Rehabilitation Services program funds to provide pre-employment...
National PTA and Safe and Supportive Schools
Thu, 15 Nov 2018 13:09:00 -0500 The National PTA has created two resources for both parents and families regarding school safety. The resource Safe and Supportive Schools: 20 Questions Every Parent Should Ask provide parents and families with actionable steps they can take to advocate for safe and supportive schools for their children based upon Framework for Safe and Successful Schools by the National Association of School Psychologists. The resource advises parents on which questions they should ask regarding school safety policies and student support services and provides “tips” answers to expect based on best practices. The second resource Safe and Supportive Schools: Mobilizing Family Stakeholders...
Looking Ahead to the 116th Congress
Tue, 13 Nov 2018 19:27:00 -0500 The election is over – well, almost with the exception of the Senate with one close race in Florida and the Mississippi special election. The U.S. House will be controlled by Democrats and the U.S. Senate will still be controlled by Republicans with a larger margin but still short of the 60 votes needed to end a filibuster. So, what does the election mean for education? Senator Lamar Alexander (R-TN) will remain chair of the Senate HELP Committee for two more years. Representative Bobby Scott (D-VA) is in line to become Chair of the House Education and the Workforce Committee...
CEC Leadership Briefed on Impact of States Dyslexia Laws
Tue, 13 Nov 2018 12:12:02 -0500 CEC’s Board of Directors met November 3–4 at the headquarters office in Arlington, Virginia. In addition to approval of the 2019 budget as well as various programmatic updates, the board received a briefing from Lindsay Jones, Interim-executive director of the National Center for Learning Disabilities (NCLD), about various Dyslexia laws that have been passed and implemented by states in recent years. The purpose of the board briefing was to keep CEC’s leaders informed as to the impact that these various laws are having on children, their families as well as educators and administrators. The laws have focused on awareness, screening,...
Administration Sued After Non-Compliance Regarding FOIA Request
Tue, 13 Nov 2018 12:07:51 -0500 The Administration is being sued after denying two Freedom of Information Act requests (FOIA) pertaining to the use of federal funds to purchase firearms or train teachers to use them under ESSA Title II Part-A. Three advocacy organizations, Democracy Forward, the American Federation of Teachers, and the Southern Poverty Law Center are suing the Administration as they failed to release pertinent records. The first FOIA request was filed August 27, 2018 and the second on September 11, 2018. The first FOIA request sought records detailing the role gun-right lobbying groups including the National Rifle Association may have played in the...
Betsy DeVos Names a New Chief of Staff
Mon, 12 Nov 2018 19:08:00 -0500 Nate Bailey is the new chief of Staff for U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos. He is succeeding Josh Venable who has worked as the Secretary’s Chief of Staff since she was appointed, and as a former aide to Florida Governor, Jeb Bush. Prior to the advancement, Bailey served as U.S. Secretary DeVos’ acting Assistant Secretary for Communications and Outreach. He has also served as director of public affairs at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, as the media relations director for the Michigan attorney general, and as communications director for the late Representative Joe Knollenberg, R-Mich.
ESSA and Missed Opportunities
Mon, 05 Nov 2018 13:14:00 -0500 The National Center for Learning Disabilities (NCLD) released the report Missed Opportunities for Students with Disabilities. The report provides the first national analysis of how state education plans are serving students with disabilities under the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). Using 15 critical components, The National Center for Learning Disabilities reviewed each state’s plan to implement ESSA in order to develop a rating system that addresses how states are addressing the needs of students with disabilities. The findings of the report proved that far too many states are squandering this opportunity. The goal of the report is to serve as...
SUPPORT for Patients and Communities Act Signed into Law
Fri, 02 Nov 2018 14:04:33 -0400 On Wednesday, October 24, 2018, the President signed into law: H.R. 6 the SUPPORT for Patients and Communities Act which addresses the opioid crisis. The bill’s intention is to reduce the access and supply of opioids and to expand access to prevention, treatment, and recovery services. The bill has a provision to address opioid usage in children and youth and authorizes $50 million in grants per year for the next five years to help states and districts support students who have experienced trauma. In addition to including school-wide behavioral interventions, SUPPORT for Patients and Communities Act authorizes $10 million in...
English Learner Students and Technology
Fri, 02 Nov 2018 10:40:23 -0400 The U.S. Department of Education recently released the National Study on English Learners and Digital Resources. The study provides the first national look at how districts and educators use educational technology to instruct English learner students. Two toolkits were developed to support English learner students gain critical lessons through technology; the first is for educators and a second toolkit was created for EdTech developers. The educators’ toolkit provides five guiding principles that assist in recognizing students’ unique needs and the technologies that best meet those needs. The toolkit for EdTech developers provides guidance on the needs of English learners and...