On February 27, President Obama launched a new effort aimed at empowering boys and young men of color, a segment of our society which too often faces disproportionate challenges and obstacles to success. These obstacles are found in our schools, communities, criminal justice system, families, and even in the minds of our young people themselves. The President is committed to building a broad coalition of backers to help break down barriers, clear pathways to opportunity, and reverse troubling trends which show too many of our boys and young men of color slipping through the cracks in our society.
To launch the “My Brother’s Keeper” initiative, the President was joined by local and national leaders in philanthropy, business, government, faith communities, and media. The challenges facing boys and young men of color are broad and multidimensional, and so must be the team we bring to the table to begin fostering solutions.
Watch the full video announcement here.
The White House Initiative on Educational Excellence for Hispanics has been working to support this initiative, with a particular focus on improving academic and other outcomes for young Latino males, and we will continue to engage the Hispanic community to advance the President’s goals.
With the March 31st deadline approaching, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and the Initiative are working to continue the Administration’s efforts increase outreach efforts to educate Latinos across the country about the benefits of the Affordable Care Act and share information about health insurance is if they enroll in the health insurance Marketplaces in their area.
Here are additional resources, to help you and your networks get informed and enrolled:
Each week until March 31, HHS is hosting Latino Enrollment Summits throughout the country in partnership with national organizations like Enroll America, LULAC, National Alliance for Hispanic Health and Planned Parenthood, but also many community partners like health centers, community centers, and libraries in your neighborhoods, are hosting Latino Enrollment Summits throughout the country. Through these Enrollment Summits, community members can learn more about the Health Insurance Marketplace and get personalized enrollment assistance from trained Navigators and assistors.
Below are the following dates and locations for the upcoming Latino Enrollment Summits:
3/15/14 El Paso, TX
3/15/14 North Jersey
3/15/14 Houston, TX
3/15/14 Orlando-Daytona area (Sanford, FL)
3/15/14 Orlando, FL
3/15/14 New Orleans, LA
3/15/14 Harlingen, TX
3/15/14 Cleveland, OH
3/15/14 Miami, FL (Florida City, FL)
3/15-16/14 Tampa, FL
3/20-21/14 McAllen, TX
3/22/14 Dallas, TX
3/22/14 Miami, FL
3/22/14 Orlando, FL
3/22/14 Brownsville, TX
3/22/14 Tampa, FL
3/29/14 Orlando, FL
3/29/14 Tampa, FL
If your organization would like to host a Latino Enrollment Summit, please contact Latino@HHS.gov.
At ED, the various White House Initiatives are engaging youth about the health care changes that are happening through the Affordable Care Act (ACA) through Healthy Engaged Youth! (HEY!). It’s important for youth to be informed about these opportunities so they can get enrolled and covered. We also want to empower youth to spread the word to their peers and the Hispanic community to ensure our community has access to affordable health care. For tips on outreach and information, get a copy of the HEY! guide, at firstname.lastname@example.org
In addition, the Initiative held an ACA Twitterchat on March 11th.
Here at the U.S. Department of Education (ED), we know that if our students are healthy, their chances of doing better in school increase. And students whose parents are covered with health insurance are more likely to see a doctor before they get sick. Now it the time to get enrolled!!
The “discipline gap” helps fuel the “achievement gap” we see in our schools today. This is the result of misguided “zero tolerance” policies. New research shows that even a single suspension to the juvenile court system increases the odds of dropping out of school.
The Discipline Disparities Research-to-Practice Collaborative released the results of more than two years of research into school discipline practices that remove students from the classroom. The group, comprised of 26 nationally recognized experts from the social science, education and legal fields, detailed its findings through three primary briefing papers and several supplementary papers. The release of the Disciplinary Disparities Briefing Paper Series follows the January 8th issuance of federal guidance on school discipline policies. This series presents the most recent findings on disciplinary disparities, with a special focus on what can be, and is being, done to reduce disparities.
The release of the Collaborative’s work is one of five initiatives coming to fruition this year that should drive home to educators, parents, policymakers and students that reliance on exclusionary discipline policies is a mistake.
Action is imperative for us, especially because Hispanic/Latino students are being suspended at hugely disproportionate rates compared to their peers. Recent research suggests the same is true with African American students, students with disabilities, English Language Learners and LGBTQ students.
Congratulations! You have completed your 2014-2015 Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Do you know what to do afterwards?
1) Look out for the Student Aid Report
After you submit your FAFSA, you’ll get a Student Aid Report (SAR). Your SAR is a paper or electronic document that gives you some basic information about your eligibility for federal student aid as well as listing your answers to the questions on your FAFSA.
2) Locate Your EFC
After locating your SAR, you may want to start by looking for your Expected Family Contribution (EFC). Your EFC is a measure of your family’s financial strength and is calculated according to a formula established by law. Its formula considers your family’s taxed and untaxed income, assets, and benefits (such as unemployment or Social Security) as well as your family size and the number of family members who will attend college.
3) Make Corrections to It
Did you fill out FAFSA before your 2013 tax information was complete? Do you need to update any information? Did you find a mistake? Don’t worry! It’s easy to make corrections online at www.fafsa.gov. Log in and click “Make FAFSA Corrections.” You’ll need to enter your Federal Student Aid PIN to make any corrections. Corrections should be processed in 3-5 days and you should receive a revised SAR.
4) Review Your Financial Aid Information
The last page of your SAR includes information about your financial aid history, specifically the loans you have taken out. It can be complicated and confusing to keep track of all of your loans and interest rates, but it is very important. Reviewing the financial aid history in your SAR will help you be aware of how much you are borrowing and how much you’ll owe later.
5) Double-Check with your Schools
Lastly, make sure that you double-check with the financial aid offices at the schools you applied to. Sometimes schools need additional paperwork or have other deadlines. You never want to leave money on the table!
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has recently posted a notice on its website with important information for individuals granted deferred action for childhood arrivals (DACA) prior to August 15, 2012. If you were granted DACA by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement prior to August 15, 2012 or are a DACA recipient with an employment authorization document (EAD) that will expire in the next 120 days, you must apply for DACA renewal to avoid any lapse in your employment authorization or accrual of unlawful presence in the United States.
If you have moved since your EAD was granted, please visit www.uscis.gov/addresschange to update your address on file with USCIS.
The Department will hold a new Promoting Postbaccalaureate Opportunities for Hispanic Americans (PPOHA) grant competition in fiscal year (FY) 2014. Institutions planning to submit an application under the PPOHA competition, when it is announced, will be required to submit an application for eligibility when that process is reopened.
Institutions that have already established their eligibility under the recently closed eligibility process for FY 2014, will not have to submit new applications for eligibility.
Please pay attention to information on the Hispanic-Serving Institutions Division’s website for additional information concerning this competition. The official announcement for eligibility and the PPOHA competition will be published in the Federal Register.
With support from a grant from the National Center for Education Research (NCER) in the Institute of Education Sciences (IES) of the U.S. Department of Education, Michigan State University and Northwestern University will be conducting the 2014 Research Design Workshop for Faculty from Minority-Serving Institutions. The purpose of the workshop is to provide an overview of quantitative education research design and introduce faculty from minority-serving institutions to IES research funding opportunities and application requirements. The goal of the workshop is to increase the capacity of researchers from minority-serving institutions to develop and conduct rigorous evaluations of the impact of education interventions.
When: July 21 – 23, 2014
Where: Hilton Orrington Hotel; Evanston, IL
Costs: Northwestern University will pay for participants' travel to and from the Research Design Workshop site, lodging, and for course materials. Participants will be provided a per diem to cover the cost of meals on days of instruction. Participants are responsible for the cost of meals in transit (to and from the Workshop).
All applications must be received no later than April 1, 2014. For more information about the workshop, including the application procedures, please visit: http://ies.ed.gov/ncer/whatsnew/conferences/14MSIworkshop/
On February 4, on a conference call with more than 1,200 stakeholders (see audio file and transcript), Secretary Duncan and Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius announced a major new competition to build, develop, and expand high-quality preschool programs by working closely with states and local communities across the country. This new $250 million Race to the Top competition is distinct from the Race to the Top-Early Learning Challenge, a program that currently supports 20 states as they design and implement integrated systems of high-quality early learning programs and services to increase the number of children from low-income families that enters kindergarten ready for success—from birth through age 5.
This year's Race to the Top funding will support the President's call to provide high-quality preschool for all four-year-olds from low- and moderate-income families, through a new competition to expand and enhance preschool programs. $500 million will be awarded competitively through the Early Head Start-Child Care Partnerships to support states and communities in expanding high-quality early learning to over 100,000 infants and toddlers.
For the fourth straight year, Secretary Arne Duncan played in the NBA All Star Celebrity game on February 14. After a performance that included 20 points, 11 rebounds and six assists, Duncan, who played collegiate basketball at Harvard and then professionally in Australia for four years, was named game MVP. Check out the highlight reel.
More importantly, during the game, Duncan proudly donned the number 80 on his jersey. This represented the newly announced high school graduation rate – the highest it has been in American history. “The 80 percent number represents not only the collective progress we’ve made as a nation, but individually as communities, schools, students, and families,” said Duncan. “We have further to go, but this is a moment to celebrate the hard work of our educators.” Hispanics are at an all-time high 72% since 1976.
On February 23, Secretary Duncan participated in the Education and Workforce Committee session, “Supporting Governors’ Innovation in Early Childhood Education,” at the National Governors Association’s (NGA) Winter Meeting. In his remarks, the Secretary referenced a handout in governors’ binders, highlighting those states that are making rapid progress in early learning, K-12 education, and higher education. He also presented a Top Ten list of why he thinks it is “inevitable” that states and the nation are going to see a dramatic expansion of high-quality early learning over the next few years. “Now, I absolutely applaud the tremendous, bipartisan leadership the governors have shown on early learning,” he stated. “And, I want to encourage each of you to take the next step. Please continue to invest and speak frankly about the need to expand high-quality early learning. There are real, practical challenges that states face in expanding access and improving quality."
On February 28, in collaboration with the National Geographic, the American Film Institute, and Fox, the first annual “White House Student Film Festival” was held in the White House. President Barack Obama mentioned that, “We also need people who are studying the arts because our film industry is a huge generator of jobs here in the United States; it tells us our story and helps us to find what’s -- our common humanity.” He also announced his ConnectED initiative, which aims to connect 99 percent of America’s students to next-generation, high-speed Internet over the next five years; as well as the $400 million in new commitments from Adobe and Prezi to make free software available to teachers and students; coupled with the $750 million in commitments from private-sector leaders who have pledged to invest more than $1 billion.
The Peace First Prize recognizes peacemakers ages 8-22 for their compassion, courage, and ability to create collaborative change.
Through a $25,000 and two-year fellowhip, Peace First will invest in each winner's leadership and share their stories with the nation. The deadline is March 17.
National Policy Forum on Integrated Student Supports: Los Angeles, CA, March 27
Public Meeting of the President’s Advisory Commission on Educational Excellence for Hispanics: Miami Dade College, Miami, FL, April 1
National Policy Forum on College Access: Durham, NC, May 8
Postsecondary Completion Symposium: New York, NY, June 3-4