Music Education Policy Roundup – March 16, 2021

NAfME News

Call for Candidates 2024-2026 NAfME National President

NAfME is seeking candidates for NAfME National President for the years 2024-2026. The deadline for submissions is March 31, 2021.Click here for more information.

NAfME Public Policy Team Office Hours

Join the NAfME Public Policy team on every Tuesday through March at 6:00 PM EDT for our office hours! During this time, NAfME staff will be available to meet with NAfME members and state leaders to answer your advocacy questions and have policy discussions. Click here to register.

Advocacy Bulletin Blog

The Public Policy team has a new blog post on the passage of the American Rescue Plan Act and its implications for music education.Click here to view the blog.

March ALF Call

We will not hold an ALF call this month. ALF calls will resume in April—we can’t wait to hear about everyone’s MIOSM® activities!

National MIOSM® Events

Young Composers Concert Will Take Place Online

The Akropolis Reed Quintet will premiere the works of winning student composers from the NAfME 2020 competition. The free concert will stream March 29 at 7:00 PM EDT. Click here to register.

Congressional Briefing: Arts Education and Social-Emotional Learning

NAfME will co-host a briefing focused on the relationship between arts education and SEL for congressional staff Wednesday, March 24 at 3:00 PM EDT. Click here to register for the briefing.

State and Federal News

Congress Approves Massive Infusion of Funds for Schools, and High-Poverty Districts Will Get the Most

3/10/21 – “Schools across the U.S. will receive a massive and historic infusion of money in the coming months thanks to a pandemic relief package that includes $128 billion for K–12 education and hundreds of billions for state governments.”

The American Rescue Plan: What’s in It for K–12 Schools?

3/11/21 – “While the $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan isn’t larger than the $2.2 trillion CARES Act, it sends more aid to K–12 schools than the prior federal relief packages. In particular, the Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief (ESSER) Fund—dollars directed to school districts for a variety of eligible services—has grown substantially.”

Public Colleges and Universities Brace for Steep Budget Cuts Spurred by the Pandemic

3/11/21 – “Dozens of public universities that never fully recovered from the Great Recession now find themselves at the mercy of budget cuts driven by a pandemic that’s exploited their state’s biggest industries.”

Spring Enrollment Keeps Slipping

3/11/21 – “Undergraduate enrollment fell by 4.5 percent versus last spring, with deep drops among some underrepresented students, according to early data. Graduate enrollment ticked up, but not enough to prevent an overall decline in student numbers.”

Oregon Governor Orders Public Schools to Reopen by Mid-April

3/5/21 – “Gov. Kate Brown has told school districts to return to either fully in-person or hybrid learning, with classroom sessions to resume this month for lower grades.”

How Are Districts Prepping for an Unprecedented Assessment Season?

3/1/21 – “As school leaders await word from their states following recent Department of Education guidance, their districts are preparing for multiple scenarios.”

$1.1M Civics Framework Launches with Support from 6 Former Ed Secretaries

3/3/21 – “Educating for American Democracy on Tuesday announced the launch of The Roadmap to Educating for American Democracy, a cross-ideological framework that aims to enhance K–12 civics and history education to reflect the country’s diverse student population.”

A Year into the COVID-19 Pandemic, School as We Know It Has Been Transformed

3/8/21 – “A student in Indiana gets the lead role in her school musical—only to rehearse over Zoom after she’s quarantined.”

Research and Analysis

Changing Patterns of Growth in Oral Reading Fluency during the COVID-19 Pandemic

“Students’ development of ORF largely stopped in spring 2020 following the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. In fall 2020, students’ gains in reading were stronger and similar to prepandemic rates. However, fall gains were insufficient to recoup spring losses; overall, students’ ORF in second and third grade is approximately 30 percent behind expectations. We also observe inequitable impact: students at lower achieving schools are falling farther behind and 10 percent of students were not assessed this fall.”

New ECS Resource: Teacher License Reciprocity

“Currently, eight states offer full reciprocity, meaning that out-of-state teaching licenses are recognized and accepted. Among the other states: 31 require additional coursework for full licensure, and 43 (and the District of Columbia) require additional assessments for some licensed teachers. This lack of agreement across states—and the resulting variation in requirements—complicates a talent pipeline for schools and districts and can unintentionally worsen shortages.”

This policy roundup was compiled by NAfME’s Rob Edwards.