Music Education Policy Roundup – October 28, 2019

NAfME News

Next Quarterly Advocacy Webinar is Tuesday!

Who says federal policy can’t be helpful? Title IV of the Every Student Succeeds Act has monies that can be used for to support more students participating in your music program. Join us for the next Quarterly Advocacy Webinar on Tuesday, October 29th at 8:00 pm EDT to learn how you can apply for Title IV funds for your school. This webinar will feature an updated Title IV Toolkit, including details on the application process, past examples of music programs’ use of funding, and the potential for “leftover” funds to be applied toward your music program. Don’t leave money on the table – register here to learn from the music teachers who have increased access to their programs using Title IV dollars! Feel free to share this with your colleagues!


National News

Alexander, Jones Introduce Bill to Simplify the FAFSA

10/22/2019- ‘U.S. Senators Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) and Doug Jones (D-Ala.) today introduced legislation to simplify the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) that nearly 20 million families fill out every year to apply for federal student aid.’


State News

NYC is requiring new standardized tests at 76 struggling schools

10/18/2019- ‘New York City is requiring a new set of standardized tests for third and sixth graders this year at 76 public schools that the state considers low-performing, education department officials told Chalkbeat.’

Chicago teachers’ strike highlights support staff shortages

10/22/2019- ‘Demands by striking Chicago teachers for more nurses, librarians and social workers are highlighting concerns that resonate in high-poverty school districts nationwide, where shortages of support staff leave educators feeling stretched.’

New Mexico adopts SAT as requirement for high school juniors

10/18/2019- ‘The SAT will become New Mexico’s official statewide standardized test for high school juniors this spring, a state official said Friday.’

FL: Senate panel approves jobs money for charter schools

10/15/2019- ‘State senators on Tuesday OK’d a bill that would allow Job Growth Grant Fund money to flow to charter schools.’

New Florida bill would require public schools to offer Bible courses

10/16/2019- ‘A proposed bill introduced in the Florida Legislature seeks to require public schools in the state to offer Bible courses as electives for high school students.’

TN- Gov. Lee announces launch of Governor’s Civics Seal, mini-grants

10/10/2019- ‘Governor Bill Lee announced the launch of a new initiative to reward schools who teach history and civic values in Tennessee on Thursday.’

Louisiana higher education board asks for $156M budget boost

10/23/2019- ‘Louisiana’s top higher education board is asking lawmakers to increase spending on public college programs by nearly $156 million next year, to raise faculty pay, boost student aid and work toward new achievement goals.’

Data center lets Kentuckians track higher education system

10/22/2019- ‘The Council on Postsecondary Education says the public launch of a comprehensive data center will enable Kentuckians to track progress in the state’s higher education system.’


Research & Analysis

Study: Kids in poor districts learn just as much

Even though disadvantaged students in poorer school districts might earn lower test scores than those in wealthier districts, students in both settings are learning just as much, according to a new study from researchers at Ohio State University.

50-State Comparison: Teacher Recruitment and Retention

This resource compiles state-specific data related to teacher shortages and provides a national comparison of state policies to recruit and retain teachers, especially in shortage subject areas and underserved schools. The resource features state educator preparation program completion data, shortage and equity gap data, in addition to policies found in state statutes, regulations and other documents, as of August 2019.

Policy Roundup compiled by NAfME’s Matt Barusch.