Support the Bipartisan Resource Equity Amendment to Every Child Achieves Act (S. 1177)
Please sign the letter at the bottom of this post and send today!
Update: NAfME has signed onto this letter with other education organizations who support the Opportunity Dashboard of Core Resources.
On July 7, the Senate is scheduled to begin debate on the Every Child Achieves Act of 2015 (S. 1177), a bipartisan new draft Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) proposal which would take the place of the current law of the land, No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB). As part of the upcoming floor debate, Senator Mark Kirk (R-IL), Senator Tammy Baldwin (D-WI), Senator Jack Reed (D-RI), Senator Sherrod Brown (D-OH) are preparing to offer an amendment aimed at ensuring access to educational resources for all students.
This “Opportunity Dashboard of Core Resources” amendment would add language to S. 1177 requiring that states report on three of five key indicators concerning access. Selected indicators would include the following:
- Access to state certified paraprofessionals
- Availability of health and wellness programs
- Availability of school libraries, “modern instructional materials and school facilities”
- The ability to disaggregate all data based on student subgroup
- Enrollment in early-childhood education and full-time kindergarten programs
- Availability of “core academic subjects,” which include music and arts
All supplied data would need to be disaggregated by student subgroup, and this information would then be used to formulate actionable plans with benchmarks designed to address inequities. States would then be required to supplement the activity of any local education agency (LEA) that does not successfully reach a prescribed benchmark in two years, through additional allocated resources.
All states receiving the above indicated resources would be required to provide parents, upon request, access to corresponding data. Doing so could prove important, particularly in communities where little or no access to music education exists in schools, and where parents and teachers could benefit the very most from a better understanding of the lay of the land.
Because of the tremendous value in having data regarding the status of access to music education in America, NAfME strongly supports the Kirk-Baldwin-Reed-Brown Opportunity Dashboard of Core Resources amendment. Join us by sending a letter to your senators below.
Alexandra Eaton, Legislative Policy Advisor, Center for Advocacy and Constituency Engagement, July 6, 2015. © National Association for Music Education (NAfME.org).