FGN News – September 2015

What is the Federal Grassroots Network (FGN)?

Nothing is more powerful on Capitol Hill than the voices of constituents, and you’ve taken a step in the right direction to help impact federal education policy by joining NASSP’s Federal Grassroots Network. As an FGN member you will receive this monthly update from NASSP advocacy staff highlighting specific news about the major policy issues affecting principals and ways to take action. You will also receive invitations to calls, webinars, and conferences to take your advocacy efforts to the next level.

Your most important role as an FGN member is to connect with your members of Congress and their staff, educating them about what principals need to lead schools effectively. You can do this by attending our annual advocacy conference in Washington, D.C., scheduling meetings with your legislators at their state or district offices, and sending them correspondence on key issues through the Principal’s Legislative Action Center.

October is National Principals Month and a perfect opportunity for you to arrange for local, state or federal policymakers to shadow you for a day. Visit the National Principals Month website to access an email template that you can use to easily invite them to follow you through a typical day at your school and show them the effects of education policy in action!

This Month’s Top Advocacy Issues

ESEA

The Senate passed their version of the reauthorization, the Every Child Achieves Act (S. 1177) on July 16 with wide bipartisan support in an 81-17 vote. The vote follows the passage of the House version, the Student Success Act (H.R. 5) on July 8. Advocates are anticipating a Conference Committee to be formed to combine the two bills this fall.

Congress is still on recess, but we are working hard to ensure principals have a voice in ESEA reauthorization. Working with the National Association of Elementary School Principals and the American Federation of School Administrators, NASSP sent a detailed letter to lawmakers on Capitol Hill outlining our concerns and priorities going forward with the ESEA conference report. Lend your voice to the cause today bysending an email to your senators and representatives through the Principal’s Legislative Action Center!

Appropriations

The Federal government’s fiscal year starts October 1 and there are only 10 legislative working days in September to pass a budget agreement. The House and Senate Appropriations committees have both passed spending bills that include cuts to education spending and elimination of programs at the Department of Education.

Data Privacy

One of the next big issues for Congress is to tackle in K-12 education is student data privacy. More than six bills have been introduced in both the House and Senate by democrats and republicans. Learn more about the activity around student data privacy in Congress on the Principal’s Policy Blog.

For more advocacy news, check out the weekly Advocacy Update blog posts on the Principal’s Policy Blog and sign up for alerts when new information is posted.

Thank You

Thank you to the 220 NASSP members who took action and collectively sent 456 email messages to their Senators through the Principal’s Legislative Action Center in support of a full reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA). Your emails and tweets to Senator’s offices let Capitol Hill know that principals have been waiting long enough for a new ESEA.