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Everyone’s getting Straight A’s: Alliance expert on higher education testifies before Congressional committee

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March 27, 2013 03:58 pm

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Every other week, the Alliance for Excellent Education posts a new edition of Straight A’s: Public Education Policy and Progress, an online newsletter. Here are excerpts from this issue. You can read the entire articles online here.

This month, the U.S. Congress passed a Fiscal Year (FY) 2013 spending package that avoids a government shutdown by keeping the federal government funded through the end of the fiscal year on September 30. The bill provides $65.8 billion in discretionary funding for the U.S. Department of Education—an amount that reflects the 5 percent across-the-board cut mandated by the sequester—compared to $68.1 billion in FY 2012. Congress passes fiscal year 2013 spending bill

Federal student aid spending increased to nearly $237 billion this year, but students entering college find the system obtuse and financial support difficult to obtain. This summer, federal student loan interest rates will be up for debate again, and will rise, if Congress does not act. These two issues were the primary focuses of a March 13 U.S. House Education and the Workforce Committee hearing on improving the federal student aid system. Dr. Charmaine Mercer, vice president of federal policy at the Alliance for Excellent Education, testified before the committee, referencing the recent Alliance paper, Repairing a Broken System: Fixing Federal Student Aid. Keeping college within reach  

On March 19, the Alliance for Excellent Education and Friday Institute for Educational Innovation at North Carolina State University opened enrollment for a first-of-its-kind Massive Online Open Course for Educators (MOOC-Ed). Titled “Digital Learning Transition,” the free course will examine how the effective use of digital learning can help school districts meet educational challenges, including implementing college- and career-ready standards for all students and preparing teachers to make effective use of technology to enhance teaching and learning. Massive online open course for educators (MOOC-Ed)

States are optimistic that waivers will help ease some of the unrealistic requirements of the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB) and improve learning for all students, but they are concerned about what will happen to the programs and policies in their waiver plans if the law is reauthorized, according a new report from the Center on Education Policy (CEP) at George Washington University. States’ perspectives on Waivers

As the new national accreditor for educator preparation, the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP) is seeking public comments on the draft of the next generation of accreditation standards for educator preparation developed by the CAEP Commission on Standards and Performance Reporting. All stakeholders in education and educator preparation are encouraged to review the draft standards and submit feedback by March 29, 2013. Feedback on accreditation standards for educator preparation due March 29

If you would like to receive Straight A’s in your inbox, please email jamos@all4ed.org.

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