ED Youth Voices March Newsletter

ed youth voices

March 12, 2018 | Sign Up to Receive ED Youth Voices

In This Issue:

Responding to Senseless Violence and Tragedy

POTUS listening session on school violence

In the wake of the awful tragedy in Parkland, Secretary Betsy DeVos has held listening sessions with student and parent, survivors educators and law enforcement, and has called for Congress to hold hearings on how lawmakers can make an impact on avoiding future tragedies. The secretary and Department staff will continue to meet with families, students, educators and law enforcement about how the Department can best support communities in finding solutions to address the issues driving individuals to lash out with violence in schools.

State of the Union and President's Budget

On Jan. 30, President Trump delivered his first State of the Union address (text and video).  He mentioned education and several related issues, including immigration, child care and education regulations.  Specifically, he encouraged strengthening career and technical education.  “As tax cuts create new jobs, let us invest in workforce development and job training,” he said.  “Let us open great vocational schools so our future workers can learn a craft and realize their full potential.” Here is a link to the President’s FY 2019 Budget Request for the U.S. Department of Education.

Secretary DeVos Announces New Student-centered Funding Pilot Program

The secretary announced new flexibility for school districts to create equitable, student-centered funding systems under a pilot program authorized by the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). The flexibility will allow school districts to combine eligible federal funds with state and local funds in order to allocate resources to schools based on the number of students and the corresponding level of need. This type of system, often called "student-centered funding" or "weighted-student funding," is widely considered to be a modern, transparent and quantifiable way to allocate resources to the students most in need. The application process opened on Feb. 7. For applicants intending to use the flexibility during the 2018–19 school year, the application deadline is March 12. For applicants intending to use the flexibility during the 2019–20 school year, the application deadline is July 15.

Stay Up-to-date With News From the Department's Individuals with Disabilities Education Act Website

IDEA website

The Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services will automatically redirect users of the outdated Building the Legacy: IDEA 2004 website to the new Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) website starting April 30.

Please update your bookmarks and websites to sites.ed.gov/idea.

Click here for more information about the automatic redirect.

U.S. Department of Education Launches New English Learner Data Story

The Department launched a new interactive web page dedicated to data on English Learner students (ELs). The site uses colorful maps, bar graphs and charts to provide a clearer understanding of America's diverse EL population in a data story format based on information from the Common Core of Data (CCD). The data story shows that nearly every state has at least one school district where the EL population has increased by more than 50 percent since the 2010 school year and answers three main questions: Who are ELs? Where are ELs? What languages do ELs speak?

Our Nation's English Learners

National Campus Leadership Council Is Calling All Student Government Presidents

The National Campus Leadership Council (NCLC) has partnered with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation for a new research project titled The Student Voice Index. Results will be available in June 2018. The project aims to examine the role of student voice in institutional decision-making by establishing a set of metrics that objectively indicate what successful student engagement looks like and how institutions can implement best practices to achieve that vision. 

How to Use Every Student Succeeds Act Requirements to Improve Education and Workforce Outcomes for Youths in Long-term Juvenile Justice Facilities

The American Youth Policy Forum, the National Reentry Resource Center and the Council of State Governments Justice Center have released a new policy brief that provides state and local policy makers, as well as education and juvenile justice leaders, with information about how they can use requirements under the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) to improve education and workforce outcomes for youths in long-term juvenile justice facilities.

Access to College Limited by College Admissions Offices?

An op-ed in the Chronicle of Higher Education highlights what many counselors have long suspected: Part of the challenge in opening college access to a wider audience involves addressing the traditional ways colleges evaluate applicants.  Many of the benchmarks colleges use to review a student contain socioeconomic biases that often overlap with racial biases, from testing to completion of Advanced Placement courses to participation in extracurricular activities. Combined with an article on college endowments, the op-ed lays out a clear case for colleges to reconsider their commitment to nontraditional audiences.