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NASSP | National Association of Secondary School Principals

Senate Passes Bipartisan Infrastructure Package; Education Advocates Eye Reconciliation

After months of negotiation, the Senate reached a bipartisan compromise and passed a national infrastructure bill on August 10.

How Does This Bill Impact K–12 Education?

Although the Senate’s bill primarily funds construction projects, roads, highways, bridges, and other elements traditionally associated with “infrastructure,” it does include a few provisions to assist K–12 schools, including:

  • $500 million to support energy-efficiency improvements and renewable energy improvements at public school facilities
  • $500 million to support increasing transportation energy efficiency for school buses and mass transit
  • $200 million to support testing and remediation of lead contamination in drinking water at schools and childcare programs
  • $75 million in grants to promote the introduction of recycling principles and best practices into public school curricula
  • $5 billion (FY 2022–26) to support a Clean School Bus Program

What’s the Catch?

Regrettably for educators and students, the vast majority of the $100 billion in new funding for K–12 schools originally proposed in the American Jobs Plan and American Families Plan was left out of this compromise bill.

However, hope remains for incorporating a substantial new investment in school facilities in additional pending legislation. As the bipartisan bill now moves to the House for consideration, congressional Democrats are crafting a roughly $3.5 trillion package they hope to move alongside the bipartisan bill via the reconciliation process that would address many of the priorities left out of the agreement.

What Can School Leaders Do?

It remains to be seen if members of Congress will include K–12 facilities funding in the reconciliation bill—making this a critical moment for school leaders to take action.

The American Jobs Plan included $100 billion for K–12 facilities for a reason: The most underserved schools in our country need significant upgrades to deliver the best education, and many are actually unsafe for students and staff. New HVAC systems are urgently needed in many buildings, plumbing needs to be replaced to reduce lead exposure and provide safe drinking water, and outdated buildings need to be upgraded to meet the demands of delivering a 21st-century education.

Please contact your members of Congress and urge them to support including $100 billion for schools in the reconciliation bill. You can send a powerful message with just a few clicks today by using this NASSP Policy & Advocacy Center campaign.


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The annual State of American Education at #NPC2021 featured a discussion on innovation w/@DicksonSyd, @SuptEnfield, @apersad, @AlysonRKlein & Chris Rush from @usedgov. Check out our recap here:

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After a chaotic pandemic school year, help kids get back on track this fall…/ via @usatoday

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This bill provides a substantial and important investment, but the vast majority of funding originally proposed for K-12 schools was left out. We need to urge Congress to add that back into the separate reconciliation bill: #SchoolsAreInfrastructure

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As President Biden and congressional leaders push for a large national infrastructure package, educators must make their voices heard and ensure that schools facilities are included in any legislation. #PrincipalsAdvocate

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Take Action

The Senate just passed an infrastructure bill, but the vast majority of funding for K-12 school facilities was left out! Please take urgent action to correct this.


Other News

After five years, Zach Scott is leaving the NASSP Policy & Advocacy Center team. Congratulations on your new career opportunity, Zach, and thank you for all your hard work on Capitol Hill advocating for school leaders and the students they serve!

The NASSP Board of Directors formally adopted two new position statements last month on LGBTQ+ Students and Educators and Supporting Principals as Leaders of Special Education.

NASSP is partnering with My School Votes in the 2021–22 school year to promote increased civic engagement with middle level and high school students. Register for the August 25 webinar to learn how school leaders can support student civic engagement and voter registration.

On Monday, school leaders engaged directly with Secretary Miguel Cardona and other Department of Education officials regarding back-to-school efforts.

The U.S. Department of Education released a “Return to School Roadmap to provide updated resources and guidance to school leaders, teachers, and families ahead of the 2021–22 school year.

NASSP recently partnered with the CDC Foundation to collect survey data from principals on the impact of COVID-19 on schools and mitigation strategies being implemented around the country. Recent data from the research project has been released in three new reports.

National Principals Month (NPM) is coming up in October! Have you considered inviting a lawmaker to your building for a shadowing visit? There are so many reasons you should. Get started with more information on the website.

Members of NASSP’s national network of LGBTQ+ school leaders are sharing their stories in a series of highlight videos. Know an LGBTQ+ school leader who would benefit from participating in the network? Tell them to join!

For more advocacy tweets, follow NASSP and the advocacy staff on Twitter:







Amanda Karhuse




Greg Waples

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