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
OSERS New Guidance Letters
Thu, 14 Mar 2019 11:35:00 -0400 The U.S. Department of Education, Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services (OSERS) released four letters responding to requests for guidance on January 29. The letters address students with disabilities in correctional facilities, discipline procedures, children with disabilities place in private schools by their parents, and response to intervention.
State of Babies Yearbook: 2019
Thu, 14 Mar 2019 11:32:00 -0400 The State of Babies Yearbook: 2019 is a collaborative effort between ZERO TO THREE and Child Trends, and holds the belief that, “babies are born with unlimited potential.” The State of Babies Yearbook: 2019 compares national and state-by-state data on the well-being of infants and toddlers based upon decades of research that demonstrate how crucial years 0-3 are for development and how to translate the research into policy. ZERO TO THREE’s policy framework, grounded in the science of early childhood development, promotes supports for infants and toddlers’ healthy development in three domains: Good Health, Strong Families, and Positive Early Learning...
President’s FY 2020 Budget Proposal Dismisses the Needs of Children with Exceptionalities
Tue, 12 Mar 2019 17:06:57 -0400 President Trump’s FY 2020 budget proposal undermines once again public education and neglects children and youth with exceptionalities, slashing the U.S. Department of Education’s budget by approximately 12.5 percent or $8.8 billion. The proposed budget eliminates funding for the Javits Act, the only federal investment to support vulnerable minority and low-income gifted students along with 28 other education programs, cutting $6.7 billion in total. All IDEA grant programs have been level funded at 2019 levels, jeopardizing the provision of a free appropriate public education and early intervention for the nation’s children and youth with disabilities. The budget also cut the...
Special Education Rule on Significant Disproportionality Reinstated by Court
Tue, 12 Mar 2019 17:03:02 -0400 The U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia ruled the U.S. Department of Education’s delay of the 2016 Equity in IDEA regulations “illegal” and required the 2016 final regulations to immediately go into effect. The court deemed the delay of the special education rule “arbitrary and capricious,” since the U.S. Department of Education violated the Administrative Procedures Act as there was not a “reasoned explanation” for delaying the 2016 Regulation and as a failure to consider the costs of delay. CEC provided extensive comment in May 2016 to the notice for proposed rule-making on the actions the Department should...
CEC Celebrates Public Schools Week – Ask Your Representative to Join!
Tue, 12 Mar 2019 16:54:39 -0400 The Council for Exceptional Children joins the Learning First Alliance and national education groups representing teachers, principals, superintendents, parents and other civic organizations for Public Schools Week, March 25-29, 2019, celebrating the achievements public schools and early childhood programs are making nation-wide and the critical roles they play in developing future generations of successful children and youth. CEC supports all pubic educators and specifically special educators and early interventionists who ensure a free appropriate public education and early intervention services through IDEA across the nation’s public programs. A bipartisan resolution designating March 25-29 Public Schools Week calls on lawmakers at...
U.S. Department of Education Releases FERPA Q&A
Fri, 08 Mar 2019 14:53:54 -0500 The Federal Commission on School Safety’s final report observed that “substantial misunderstanding remains at the local level among officials and educators concerning the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), and, in particular, its application to school-based threats.” In response, the Department recently issued a comprehensive set of frequently asked questions (FAQs) on schools’ and school districts’ responsibilities under FERPA. The document, titled “School Resource Officers, School Law Enforcement Units, and the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act,” consolidates previously issued guidance and technical assistance into a single resource. Understanding the provisions of FERPA relative to circumstances that threaten the...
Apply to Join AACTE’s Special Education Teacher Shortage NIC
Fri, 08 Mar 2019 14:47:55 -0500 The American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education (AACTE) is now accepting applications from member institutions to join a CEEDAR funded networked improvement community (NIC) focused on special education teacher recruitment and retention. The shortage of special education teachers and the lack of diversity among all teachers have been well documented. Half of all schools and 90% of high-poverty schools struggle to find qualified special education teachers. The aim of this NIC is to positively impact the special education teacher shortage and the lack of diversity in the special education teacher workforce in public schools. Participating institutions will identify a...
CEC Opposes D.C. School Voucher Program Reauthorization
Thu, 07 Mar 2019 12:42:00 -0500 The Council for Exceptional Children joined 44 organizations and associations to sign on to the National Coalition for Public Education (NCPE) letter in opposition to the reauthorization of D.C.’s failing voucher program. The D.C. program, in particular, has proven ineffective and unaccountable to taxpayers. Recent evaluations of the program found that it did not improve education opportunities for children and youth nor was it effectual in providing student or parental satisfaction. The letter argues that, “Congress should not allocate millions of taxpayer dollars to an unsuccessful and poorly managed program,” who “repeatedly failed to meet accountability standards,” and critically face...
2019 Special Education Legislative Summit Registration Opens
Tue, 05 Mar 2019 18:20:00 -0500 The Council for Exceptional Children (CEC) and Council of Administrators of Special Education (CASE) invite you to the 2019 Special Education Legislative Summit, the premier advocacy event of the year for special educators and early interventionists. During this event, advocates from across the country gather together to educate our nation’s policymakers about protecting IDEA, ensuring FAPE and early intervention services, and safeguarding the rights of children and youth with exceptionalities. You know what children and youth with exceptionalities and professionals need, so raise your voice and advocate with us during the 2019 Special Education Legislative Summit this July!
CEC Opposes Administration’s New Tax Credit Voucher Program: Write Your Member of Congress
Tue, 05 Mar 2019 17:54:00 -0500 Last week, U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos, along with U.S. Senator Ted Cruz (R-Texas) and U.S. Representative Bradly Bryne (R-AL), announced a proposal to create a new federal private school voucher program. The proposal, the Education Funding Scholarships and Opportunity Act, would create a dollar-for-dollar tax credit for individuals and corporations contributing to organizations set up to provide vouchers for students to attend private schools. Read more. Go to CEC’s Legislative Action Center and urge your members of Congress to keep public funds in public education.