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NSBA Lauds Lawmakers’ Focus on Strong Local Governance as Efforts to Rewrite NCLB Progress

July 8, 2015

Alexandria, Va. (July 8, 2015) -- The National School Boards Association (NSBA) continues to actively engage with our nation’s lawmakers in support of a comprehensive, strategic modernization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA). NSBA views local and community leadership as the cornerstone of public education in the United States.

During today’s House and Senate floor action, lawmakers on both sides of the aisle reinforced the value of school boards across the country with a call to strengthen local governance, provide greater flexibility for innovation, and guard against inappropriate levels of federal intrusion.

“We are pleased that lawmakers recognize the critical role local board members serve in providing all public school students with an education they deserve,” stated NSBA Executive Director Thomas J. Gentzel. “As ESEA undergoes modernization and reauthorization, the time is now to uphold local and community leadership of public schools as serving the best interests of our students, parents, and local communities.”

In advance of today’s consideration of the Student Success Act (H.R. 5), NSBA sent a letter to the House expressing appreciation for members’ commitment to strengthen local governance and promote the success of our nation’s public school students. The letter underscored NSBA’s firm opposition to amendments that would authorize private vouchers, tuition tax credits or any other measure that redirects public dollars toward private education. In a close vote, 218-213, the House passed H.R. 5 with provisions that support the role of local governance in public education.

On the Senate side, NSBA worked closely with Senators Deb Fischer (R-Neb.), Jon Tester (D-Mont.) and Angus King (I-Maine) on their amendment to the Every Child Achieves Act (S. 1177) that would provide strong support for local autonomy in managing school administration, budget development and related operations for school district responsibilities in improving student achievement. Noteworthy to school boards, Senator Lamar Alexander’s (R-Tenn.) amendment that proposed federal scholarships for school choice was not approved.  The Senate bill adopted amendments for school library investments, restoration of grant programs in Indian Country for teacher training and student fellowships, and increased equity in school sports, among others.

During this historic reauthorization process, NSBA, the leading advocate for public education, will continue to work with lawmakers to achieve a modern ESEA that provides our nation’s 50 million public students with a world-class education.

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The National School Boards Association (NSBA) is the leading advocate for public education and supports equity and excellence in public education through school board leadership. NSBA represents state school boards associations and their more than 90,000 local school board members throughout the U.S. Learn more at www.nsba.org

Continue to follow @NSBAComm for live updates of further Senate floor activities.

 

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