NSBA Praises Senate for Passing Bipartisan Education Bill to Restore Local Governance in Public Education

December 9, 2015

Alexandria, Va. (December 9, 2015) - The National School Boards Association (NSBA) commends the U.S. Senate for passing a bipartisan, bicameral bill to reauthorize the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965, known as the Every Student Succeeds Act (S.1177). During the reauthorization process, there was a collective effort by NSBA and local school board members to advocate before Members of Congress for a modernized education law that underscores the importance of local governance, protects federal investments in Title I grants for disadvantaged students, and prevents the diversion of public tax dollars for private use.

“NSBA applauds lawmakers in the House and Senate for their commitment to passing a modernized law that preserves important federal cornerstones, such as equity and excellence, while establishing a ‘new federalism’ in education policy – upholding local governance and creating a new federal-state-local partnership to ensure that states and local school board members are better positioned to provide all students with a world class public education,” stated Thomas J. Gentzel, Executive Director of the National School Boards Association.

The work of NSBA’s legislative governing body, the Delegate Assembly, informed the development of provisions to support local governance in the legislation. Senators Deb Fischer (R-Neb.), Jon Tester (D-Mont.) and Angus King (I-Maine) introduced the tri-partisan local governance measure, which was included in S.1177 passed today by the Senate. The provision strengthens support for local autonomy in managing school administration, budget development, and related operations for school district responsibilities – all important to continuous improvement for student achievement.

“Today’s passage of the Every Student Succeeds Act is a true testament to the unprecedented activism by our nation’s 90,000 local school board members, and reflects a strong national interest to restore local governance and community ownership in public education,” said Gentzel.

In light of this historic milestone, NSBA will continue to work with Congress and the Administration in addressing the flexibility states and local school districts need to ensure equity and excellence in public education; such as the development of innovative programs that address the unique needs of each school district and respective community, programmatic flexibility for school districts, and recruitment and retention of highly effective teachers and leaders.

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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 board associations and their more than 90,000 local school board members throughout the U.S. Learn more at

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