President Joe Biden and the 117th Congress have inherited a complex set of circumstances in the education world. The pandemic continues to expose our systemic gaps and inequities, and student and educator needs continue to grow exponentially while our budgets continue to shrink. Although our challenges are complicated, our message to policymakers is simple: They must create policies that establish the conditions and supports necessary for our students’ post-pandemic learning and success. Our countless conversations with principals across the country place those conditions in four main areas where NASSP will commit its 2021 legislative efforts:
- Restoring the funding that was reduced by the pandemic’s effect on local economies
- Applying an equity lens to policies to ensure all children have viable pathways to success
- Strengthening the principalship and educator workforce to ensure that all students are prepared for success in achieving their dreams
- Ensuring that all children and educators are safe and healthy
The Biden transition team asked us to share these priorities in detail back in December. They know that principals are one of the most impactful assets of our educational system, because principals are the leaders who bring together all the policies, community perspectives, and stakeholder needs, and skillfully synthesize and shape them into action plans and practices that advance student and educator well-being and success. They are genuinely interested in and committed to improving the lives of children, families, educators, and educational leaders—so we can’t be shy about identifying what we need to realize that success. Your voice is needed now more than ever—so join me in taking this simple first step: Sign on to this agenda at www.nassp.org/policyagenda. If you have already signed, please share it with your colleagues and encourage them to sign, too. With all our voices in unison, we can engage and empower our colleagues, partners, and elected officials and fulfill the mission that we all committed to when we entered the field of public education—to help the world be a better place.
Thank you for all you do for our students and our communities!
Ronn K. Nozoe