Music Education Policy Roundup – June 17, 2019

National News

CivXNow offers policy recommendations to expand K-12 civics lessons

CivXNow, a coalition of 90 organizations working to improve civic education, is calling on state legislators to expand K-12 civics lessons. The Coalition says civic education is facing a “crisis,” with only nine states requiring a full year of such classes in high school. In 31 states, students only have to learn civics for one semester, and 10 states don’t have a civics requirement at all, according to the group, which includes the National Conference of State Legislatures, the Council of State Governments and National Council for the Social Studies.

Education Dept. pleads FCC not to repurpose wireless broadband service

6/11/19- ‘The Federal Communications Commission is considering auctioning off wireless spectrum to the private sector that has traditionally been dedicated to educational institutions, but the Department of Education encouraged the agency last week to reconsider.’

Rewriting the Rule Book for College Accreditors

6/12/19- ‘Betsy DeVos issued a proposal Tuesday to loosen federal standards for college accreditors, arguing that the changes would spur innovation.’

State News

ME: Justice Department backs parents suing Maine over tuition for religious schools

6/11/19- ‘The U.S. Department of Justice has thrown its support behind a small group of Maine parents who have filed a federal lawsuit seeking reimbursement for their children’s religious school tuition.’

TX: Texas Governor Signs Bill Allowing More Armed Teachers

6/6/19- ‘Texas will allow more teachers to have guns in school and will increase mental health services for students under bills that Gov. Greg Abbott signed into law Thursday as major parts of the state’s response to a 2018 mass shooting at a high school near Houston.’

Texas and Nevada Lawmakers Overhaul States’ Controversial School Funding Formulas

6/12/19- ‘Legislators in Texas and Nevada were ahead of the pack this year in passing bills to revamp the way school spending is distributed, a fiscal and political puzzle that continues to vex state lawmakers across the country.’

Research & Analysis

Is the Nation’s Rising Graduation Rate Real?

6/11/19- ‘Millions of high school seniors are claiming their diplomas, but that spring ritual is clouded by a persistent debate: Are the nation’s record-setting graduation rates inflated by quick-fix practices like credit recovery? Or are they real?’

Districts Could Get $14 Billion More This Fall. Here Are Five Ways They Might Spend It

6/13/19- ‘School districts this year appear to be on track to receive a windfall of money from their states. Income and sales tax are at surging with the healthy economy, and few states missed their revenue projections resulting in huge surpluses in some places and the ability for governors to deliver on a key campaign promise: increased K-12 spending.’