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Educators urge U.S. House to continue to work on federal education law rewrite

All eyes turn to the U.S. Senate to get ESEA right


WASHINGTON - February 27, 2015 -

Citing a legislative logjam involving funding for the federal Department of Homeland Security, the U.S. House of Representatives today temporarily pulled from the floor a final vote on a bill, H.R. 5, to reauthorize the federal education law No Child Left Behind.

NEA President Lily Eskelsen García issued the following statement:

“We urge the House of Representatives to continue to work hard to capitalize on the opportunity to get ESEA right.

“During the robust debate on amendments yesterday, we saw positive signs that lawmakers were willing to put students ahead of politics. For example, they adopted a number of important amendments on testing, adding: flexibility for locally-designed assessments to be used; audits to eliminate unnecessary state and local tests; and requiring districts inform parents of ‘opt out’ policies.

“We welcome that bipartisan spirit and cooperation and we applaud lawmakers for acknowledging the growing problem with too much federally-mandated testing and approving commonsense amendments that would again allow educators to inspire students’ natural curiosity, imagination, and desire to learn.

“Now, all eyes turn to the U.S. Senate, where they will have an opportunity to usher a new vision for our nation’s public schools, a vision that promotes opportunity, equity and excellence for all students regardless of the zip code in which they live.

“Getting ESEA right means creating a new generation accountability system that includes an “opportunity dashboard”—indicators of school quality to identify opportunity and resource gaps that must be addressed to support learning; less testing and more flexibility on the types of tests given so students have more time to learn; and ensuring qualified educators for students and empowering them to lead. These core principles will allow educators to focus on what is most important: installing a love of learning in their students.

“We urge Congress to get ESEA right. We stand ready to work with members of both parties to fix this badly broken law.”

Follow us @NEAMedia #ESEA #GetESEAright

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The National Education Association (www.nea.org) is the nation's largest professional employee organization, representing more than 3 million elementary and secondary teachers, higher education faculty, education support professionals, school administrators, retired educators and students preparing to become teachers.

CONTACT: Miguel A. Gonzalez
202-822-7823, mgonzalez@nea.org


NEA: The Elementary and Seondary Education Act (ESEA)