Congress Looks Ahead to FY23
Although the House remained on recess this week, lawmakers representing the “four corners”— Senate Appropriations Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-VT), Ranking Member Sen. Richard Shelby (R-AL), House Appropriations Committee Chairwoman Rosa DeLauro (D-CT) and Ranking Member Rep. Kay Granger (R-TX)—met for the first time to formally discuss the prospects for the upcoming 2023 federal fiscal year (FY23). These committees will continue to examine President Biden’s FY23 budget request as they begin to set to work crafting legislation to fund federal programs and services like the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). As these efforts continue, NSBA’s advocacy team will work to ensure a robust investment is made in K-12 schools and related programs.
Education Department Promotes Teacher Appreciation Week
This week was national Teacher Appreciation week—a time to honor teachers throughout the nation. As part of these efforts, U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona kicked-off the week with a visit to Richmond, Virginia where he toured high school career and technical education (CTE) programs and, relatedly, teacher preparation programs at area community colleges. Later in the week, Secretary Cardona hosted a roundtable celebrating teachers. At this event, the Secretary discussed a public service loan forgiveness waiver from last fall which is aimed at discharging additional student debt carried by eligible teachers.
FCC Announces New Funding Commitments
On Thursday, May 4, The Federal Communications Commission announced that it had committed nearly $39 million in the 14th wave of Emergency Connectivity Fund (ECF) program support, helping to close the Homework Gap. This latest round of funding will assist 140 schools, 14 libraries, and 1 consortium across the country, including for students in California, Georgia, Hawaii, Kentucky, Michigan, New York, Puerto Rico, and Virginia. Securing funding for the ECF program was a top NSBA legislative priority as part of the American Rescue Plan.
School Safety Grants Available
Grants are available through the Fiscal Year 2022 School Violence Prevention Program (SVPP) via the Office of Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS). The program’s goal is to improve security at schools and on school grounds through evidence-based school safety programs and technology. Under this program, $53 million is available to states, units of local government, Indian tribes, and their public agencies, including school districts (including charter school districts and school districts with a single school), school boards, and law enforcement agencies.
Each application must accompanied by an assurance that the application was prepared after consultation with individuals not limited to law enforcement officers (including licensed mental health professionals, social workers, students, parents, school violence researchers/academics (if practical), teachers, principals, and other school personnel) to ensure that improvements to be funded under the grant are consistent with a comprehensive approach to preventing school violence; protective of student privacy and ensure that students are not discriminated against on the basis of race, national origin, disability, religion, or sex; and, individualized to the needs of each school at which those improvements are to be made. Applications are due June 14. The announcement and submission guidelines are available at https://cops.usdoj.gov/pdf/2022ProgramDocs/svpp/solicitation.pdf.
The Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA) also announced that grants are available for its STOP School Violence Program. Applications may be submitted that address one or more of the following areas:
- Developing and operating technology solutions such as anonymous reporting systems for threats of school violence;
- Multidisciplinary behavioral threat assessment and/or intervention teams; training school personnel and educating students on preventing school violence, including strategies to improve a school climate;
- Specialized training for law enforcement who work in schools and/or with school-age populations such as school resource officers (SROs) and probation officers; and
- Hiring of school support personnel such as climate specialists, school psychologists, school social workers, school-based violence interrupters, and others directly supporting the prevention of school violence.
Grant applications are due by June 14. The full grant announcement is available online at https://bja.ojp.gov/funding/O-BJA-2022-171118.pdf.
- H.R.7620 — 117th Congress (2021-2022) Stop Sexual Harassment in K–12 Act Sponsor: Rep. Casten, Sean [D-IL-6]
- Courtesy of NSBA's Federal Advocacy & Public Policy Update - Week of May 6, 2022