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ASSOCIATION FOR CAREER & TECHNICAL EDUCATION

House Committee Approves Two Education Bills

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April 8, 2014

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House Committee Approves Two Education Bills

On April 8, 2014, the House Education and the Workforce Committee approved two bi-partisan bills, a rare feat in today's polarized political environment.

The first bill, approved by voice vote, was the Strengthening Education through Research Act (H.R. 4366). This bill, introduced by Reps. Todd Rokita (R-IN) and Carolyn McCarthy (D-NY), reauthorizes the Education Sciences Reform Act. This law covers programs such as the National Center for Education Statistics, NAEP exam and state longitudinal data systems.

Of particular interest to CTE, the bill would amend the authorization for state longitudinal data system grants to foster alignment of data across early childhood, K-12, postsecondary and workforce programs. This alignment would aid efforts to report on post-CTE program outcomes, such as employment. The bill would also place additional emphasis on the use of data, not merely its creation. As part of the national Workforce Data Quality Campaign, ACTE supported this bill.

In addition, the Committee passed the Success and Opportunity through Quality Charters Act (H.R. 10), originally introduced by Reps. John Kline (R-MN) and George Miller (D0CA). This bill addresses the Charter Schools Program within the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, and focuses on replication and expansion of successful charter models. The bill also encourages charter schools to reach out to special populations, including at-risk students, students with disabilities, and English learners. ACTE has not taken a position on this bill.

"I am pleased the committee approved with bipartisan support two pieces of legislation that will help raise the bar in our nation's schools," Committee Chair Kline said. "By advancing proposals to encourage the growth of high-performing charter schools and help school leaders access more useful education research, we have taken an important step forward in the fight to improve K-12 education in America." Both bills are expected to move quickly to the full House for a vote.

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