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Ag. Education Advocacy

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US Department of Education (ED) Approves First Round of Perkins State Plans

 

How much do you know about Perkins State Plans? It is a complex process. Details related to programs authorized under the Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act (Perkins V) are compiled on the U.S. Department of Education (ED) Perkins Collaborative Resource Network website.

 

Your respective state’s plan must be submitted to ED for approval. The state plan sets forth how the federal appropriation for Perkins programs in your state may be expended.

 

ED has announced that the first six state plans under the Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act (Perkins V) have been approved. Perkins V was signed into law on July 31, 2018. Since then, states have submitted and implemented one-year transition plans. Now, states are awaiting approval of the full four-year state plan. The six approved states are Hawaii, Illinois, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts and New Hampshire. ED provides a few highlights from each plan here.

 

Because each state plan is individualized for the respective state, it is difficult to say how Perkins appropriations are used across the board nationally. However, by studying your state’s plan, you can better understand how Perkins funds may be used in your state and in your local program. For specifics on how Perkins funds may be, and are, used in your local school district, talk with your local CTE director/administrator.

Last week, the United States House of Representatives passed H.R. 6800, the Health and Economic Recovery Omnibus Emergency Solutions (HEROES) Act, a $3 trillion, 1,800 page follow-up coronavirus relief package. Although it made important, substantial investments into our education system, it does not include any dedicated resources for CTE programs.

 

In early May, Rep. Bobby Scott of Virginia and Sen. Patty Murray of Washington introduced H.R. 6646/S. 3659, the Relaunching America’s Workforce (RAWA) Act, which provides over $15 billion in funding for various federal workforce programs in response to the economic fallout created by COVID-19, including $1 billion through the Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act (Perkins V), and $2 billion for community college and industry partnerships. The bill also provides critical Perkins V waivers that give our education leaders the flexibility necessary to ensure they continue to provide high-quality CTE programs to students.

As attention now turns to the Senate and negotiations between the respective parties, our goal is to ensure that CTE funding is prioritized! It is critical that the next relief package provides the necessary resources to ensure students can gain skills that are needed to help combat the pandemic and that will be needed by business and industry as we shift toward long-term economic recovery.

 

For those of you who have relationships with your Members of Congress, now would be an excellent time to contact them and ask them to support the inclusion of funding for the Relaunching America’s Workforce Act in the next relief package.

 

You can contact your Members of Congress through the ACTE Legislative Action Center … or you can call the U.S. Capitol switchboard at (202) 224-3121. An operator will then connect you with your requested office. This can be particularly effective if you have a contact in the congressional office that you can ask for directly. For sample talking points, please see below.

 

  • CTE is critical to helping our nation’s economy recover and to getting millions of Americans back to work. 
  • Significant investment is needed to help upskill and retrain the over 30 million Americans who are out of work and the many whose jobs are likely to be changed and impacted as a result of coronavirus. 
  • During the last recession, postsecondary enrollment increased by nearly 2.5 million students or 16 percent. The increase was largely due to nontraditional-aged college students, and 50 percent of the new enrollments went to community colleges. A similar trend can be expected with the current predicted economic downturn.
  • The next stimulus bill must include a significant investment in CTE and workforce development programs to ensure that CTE has the capacity and resources to nimbly and adequately support urgent workforce needs.

Virtual Congressional Visits

 

Due to the worldwide COVID-19 outbreak, ACTE's National Policy Seminar had to be cancelled this year. But, our valued partners at ACTE have done a tremendous job in developing the "Virtual Visit Guide."

 

So,  NAAE's Washington Beat this month, focuses on this resource from ACTE. In addition to great suggestions on conducting telephone meetings with Congressional staffers, the resource includes updates on these issues:

  • Coronavirus-related Relief Funds
  • Perkins Funding for Fiscal Year 2021
  • Joining the CTE Caucus
  • Higher Education Act Reauthorization
  • National Apprenticeship Act Reauthorization
  • Infrastructure Investments
  • Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act Reauthorization

Please enjoy, take full advantage of the "Virtual Visit Guide," and pay your ACTE dues!

 

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From ACTE:

On behalf of ACTE, we hope that you and your family remain safe and healthy throughout the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. While we know canceling NPS was the right decision for the health and safety of everyone involved, it does not mean that our advocacy has to stop! In fact, ensuring CTE programs are included and valued is as important now as ever. We hope that you are able to move any meetings you had scheduled to phone calls instead, either now or later as schedules allow, and that you continue to reach out to any offices that you did not have meetings scheduled with already to open lines of communication. We have created a “Virtual Visit Guide” to help you with your advocacy. This document is intended to provide you with relevant information ahead of these conversations, but if you have any other questions, please feel free to contact the ACTE Public Policy Department at publicpolicy@acteonline.org.

As we go into 2020, how do you plan to advocate for your program and ag education?

What can you do at National FFA Convention to advocate for your program? 

As we get closer to the end of September, when government funding will expire, Congress has been continuing to work on the Fiscal Year 2020 appropriations bills. In the past week, the importance of CTE was recognized with the House introduction of the Strengthen CTE in Higher Education Act. Read below to learn more about each of these updates.

 

Senate and House Continue Work on Appropriations Bills – On September 18, Chairman of the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies (Labor-HHS-Education), Roy Blunt (R-MO), released the text of the Subcommittee's Fiscal Year 2020 (FY20) appropriations bill. The bill allocated $71.4 billion for the Department of Education and $12.1 billion to the Department of Labor. The FY20 bill allocates $1.3 billion to CTE State Grants, also known as Perkins Basic State Grants- an amount that is level with the FY19 funding level.

 

The full Labor-HHS-Education FY20 bill can be found here and a summary of the bill can be found here. A markup of the Labor-HHS-Education funding bill has not yet been rescheduled after it was cancelled earlier this month.

 

On September 19, the House of Representatives passed a continuing resolution funding bill that would continue federal funding through November 21 – allowing additional time for appropriators to finalize the long-term FY20 bill. A Senate vote for this measure has not been scheduled.

 

House Introduces The Strengthening CTE in Higher Education Act – Last week, Representatives Lori Trahan (D-MA), Chris Pappas (D-NH), Kendra Horn (D-OK) and Abby Finkenaur (D-IA) introduced The Strengthen CTE in Higher Education Act (H.R. 4371). This bill would authorize nearly $200 million in funding to strengthen program alignment for postsecondary Perkins Career Technical Education (CTE) programs through collaboration between postsecondary CTE and partners in education and the workforce. 

 

The full bill can be found here. A press release, including quotes from ACTE Executive Director LeAnn Wilson and Advance CTE Executive Director Kimberly Green, can be found here.

This is a feature from the June 2019 edition of NAAE’s News & Views Newsletter. To read News & Views in its entirety, please visit this link.

 

On September 19, 2019 we are celebrating 10 years of Teach Ag. Here's our advocacy question for the month: 

 

How can you use National Teach Ag Day to advocate for your program?

This is a feature from the June 2019 edition of NAAE’s News & Views Newsletter. To read News & Views in its entirety, please visit this link.

 

We are a growing profession and want to make sure that our goals, mission, and initiatives are inclusive, diverse, and equitable. 

 

Here's our advocacy question of the month:

 

How can we advocate for ALL students through the accomplishments of our ag programs and FFA chapters?

 

Let us know your thoughts!

This is a feature from the May 2019 edition of NAAE’s News & Views Newsletter. To read News & Views in its entirety, please visit this link.

 

On Wednesday, May 8, the House Committee on Appropriations marked up the Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies (Labor-HHS-Education) appropriations bill for Fiscal Year 2020 (FY20), which begins October 1, 2019. The bill moved ahead on a 30-23 party line vote.

 

The Committee accepted an amendment by Chairwoman of the Labor-HHS-Education Appropriations Subcommittee, Rep. DeLauro (D-CT). The amendment adds $103 million to the overall spending amount for the bill. This allowed for an additional $10 million to be allocated to CTE State Grants, also known as Perkins Basic State Grants, leading to a total increase of $47 million over the amount provided by Congress for FY19.

 

It is important to note that this markup is an early step in the process to determine the amount of funding Congress will allocate to the U.S. Departments of Education and Labor for FY20. The Senate Appropriations Committee has not yet released their FY20 funding bill for Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies. In addition, Congress must agree on the overall levels of spending for defense and non-defense discretionary spending before determining final allocations for the FY20 appropriations bills and associated programs.

 

On Tuesday, May 7, the House Committee on Appropriations released its report on the Labor-HHS-Education FY20 appropriations bill, which provides additional information about congressional intent. The report reinforces the role of Perkins Basic State Grants in creating opportunities for secondary, postsecondary and adult learners. The report also highlighted:

  • Student Support and Academic Enrichment Grants (authorized under Title IV-A of the Every Student Succeeds Act) and the opportunity to use them to support engineering and computer science education;
  • National Programs and support from the Committee for continued collection and dissemination of research in CTE while keeping funding level;
  • Cybersecurity and the need to better equip those who work in industries that regularly face cybersecurity threats, and how CTE programs can incorporate cybersecurity into the curricula related to critical infrastructure sectors;  
  • Second Chance Pell and the need for research on the impact of Second Chance Pell in order to expand opportunities for incarcerated individuals to be eligible for Pell grants;
  • Federal Work-Study programs and how they can include community-based organizations and community service opportunities, but many students don't know that these exist. The report pushes institutions of higher education to better communicate with students so that their Federal-Work Study experience can be connected to their career pathways of interest; and
  • High School Youth Apprenticeship programs and a requirement for the U.S. Department of Education to submit a publicly available report on how apprenticeship funds are leveraged, including how the Department will expand high school youth apprenticeship programs.

This is a feature from the April 2019 edition of NAAE’s News & Views Newsletter. To read News & Views in its entirety, please visit this link.

 

We each have our own unique opportunities to advocate for the agricultural education profession. Since each state, town, county, and community are different, there are a variety of resources and tools available to help promote the profession.

 

This month, we'd like to know.....

 

What additional local and state resources would you like to have to help advocate for your ag program?

 

Share your thoughts with us!

This is a feature from the March 2019 edition of NAAE’s News & Views Newsletter. To read News & Views in its entirety, please visit this link.

 

Perkins V Implementation – Advance CTE (the organization for the state directors of career and technical education) has developed some excellent resources to help those interested understand the Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act (Perkins V) better.

 

The resources related to Perkins V overview include:

  • Understanding the Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act (Perkins V) (PDF)
    An overview of Perkins including its purpose, how funds are distributed and why Perkins is an investment that matters.
  • Summary and Analysis of Perkins V (PDF)
    An overview of Perkins V, including state and local implications from Advance CTE and ACTE.
  • Major Tenets of Perkins V (PDF)
    A one-page overview of the major tenets of The Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act (Perkins V) from Advance CTE and ACTE.
  • Perkins V Recorded Webinar 8/2/18 (Webinar)
    A one-hour recorded webinar from ACTE that covers the main provisions of Perkins V.
  • Coordinating Across Perkins V and the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (PDF)
    This guide from Advance CTE and the National Skills Coalition looks at six opportunities to promote coordination across Perkins V and the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) as states develop and implement plans under Perkins V.
  • Perkins V Reauthorization: Opportunities, Challenges and Risks for States (PDF)
    This toolkit by ExcelinEd looks at eight new opportunities in Perkins V for states to consider how to implement high-quality CTE programs.

 

Additional resources are available related to:

  • Access and Equity
  • Career Advisement and Development
  • Local Application/Local Needs Assessment
  • Cross-sector Strategies and Governance
  • Data and Accountability
  • Perkins State Plan
  • Secondary and Postsecondary Alignment
  • Stakeholder Engagement and Communication

 

Even though these resources are targeted for state CTE leaders, they are informative for all who are interested in knowing more about Perkins V.

 

Advance CTE also has a guide available, Key Tips for Engaging Policymakers, which provides advice on preparing to brief new leaders, with tailored guidance for and questions to expect from new governors, legislators, state board members, and K-12 and postsecondary leaders.

 

 

FY 2020 Administration Budget Request – The White House has just released its federal budget request for FY 2020.  For the third consecutive year, the administration’s budget request seeks to cut education spending. For FY 2020, a 12 percent cut for the U.S. Department of Education is recommended. Education Week is reporting that funding for teacher development under Title II, totaling $2.1 billion, would be eliminated, as would $1.2 billion in Title IV funding for academic supports and enrichment and $1.1 billion for 21st Century Community Learning Centers that support after-school programs. In total, funding for 29 programs would be eliminated in the federal budget. An early review suggests that the proposed CTE funding for FY 2020 is about the same as the actual appropriation for FY 2019 at about $1.3 billion.

 

Here’s the link to the FY 2020 budget request for the U.S. Department of Education.

 

Here's a link to a 4.5 minute video from the Alliance for Excellent Education that explains the impact of the Administration's budget request for the U.S. Department of Education.

 

Directly taken from Advance CTE's communications, some key programs of the Administration's budget request are highlighted below:

  • Investments in the Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act (Perkins V):
    • CTE State Grants: proposed level funding for the Perkins Basic State Grants at the amount provided by Congress in FY19. The President's budget also includes the recommendation that Congress authorize changes to increase the fees collected for H-1B visas and redirect 15 percent of that revenue to provide an increase in funding for CTE State Grants. However, we are still examining this proposal and at this point, it is unclear if this would be a practical way to ensure more resources for CTE State Grants and how much funding could be realized.
    • National Programs: proposed increase of $12.58 million above the amount provided by Congress in FY19 to support the new Innovation and Modernization grants authorized under Perkins V.
  • Student Support and Academic Enrichment Grants, authorized under Title IV-A of the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), which can support CTE as part of a well-rounded education: proposed for elimination.
  • Supporting Effective Instruction State Grants, authorized under Title II of ESSA, which can support CTE professional development: proposed for elimination.  
  • Pell Grants: proposed to keep the maximum Pell grant frozen at its current level, rescind $2 billion from the the Pell reserve (the unobligated funds for the program that have been previously appropriated), and expand the access to the Pell grant to short-term programs. Advance CTE is supportive of expanding Pell grants to shorter-term programs as outlined in the JOBS Act, which has bipartisan support.
  • State formula grants provided through Title I of the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA): proposed level funding at the amount provided by Congress in FY19.
  • Adult Education and Family Literacy State Grants: proposed decrease of $156.2 million below the level provided by Congress in FY19.  
  • Apprenticeship grants: proposed level funding at the amount provided by Congress in FY19, noting that these funds should be directed to Industry-Recognized Apprenticeships.

 

 

2019 ACTE National Policy Seminar Agricultural Education Track – We are eager to welcome agricultural educators to the ACTE National Policy Seminar, March 24-27.  NAAE is paying the registration fee for an agricultural educator from 22 states to participate in the NPS.

This is a feature from the February 2019 edition of NAAE’s News & Views Newsletter. To read News & Views in its entirety, please visit this link.

 

The 2019 ACTE National Policy Seminar with Agricultural Education Track is just around the corner. We hope you are able to join us for three days of networking and learning about all of the different ways you can advocate for your program and your profession. 

 

To kick off this event and to help start thinking about the importance of advocacy, we want to know....

 

What does ADVOCACY look like to YOU? 

 

Share your thoughts with us!

This is a feature from the January 2019 edition of NAAE’s News & Views Newsletter. To read News & Views in its entirety, please visit this link.

 

The 116th United States Congress was sworn in on January 3. Aside from the work related to the partial federal government shutdown, we can report on the new committee membership for the House and Senate committees related to career and technical education.

 

Senate Appropriations Committee Chairman Shelby (R-AL) and Vice Chairman Leahy (D-VT) announced that Chairman Blunt (R-MO) and Ranking Member Murray (D-WA) will remain as the leaders of the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, Education and Related Agencies.

 

The House Appropriations Committee leadership has shifted. The new Chairwoman of the Committee is Rep. Lowey (D-NY) and the new Ranking Member is Rep. Granger (R-TX). Rep. DeLauro (D-CT) will serve as the Chairwoman of the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, Education and Related Agencies.


For the Senate HELP Committee, Sen. Alexander (R-TN) will remain the Chairman and Sen. Murray (D-WA) will remain the Ranking Member. However, the membership for the Committee shifted slightly. Sen. Young (R-IN) and Sen. Bennet (D-CO) will move off the Committee and Sen. Hatch (R-UT) retired in 2018. Sen. Romney (R-UT), Sen. Braun (R-IN) and Sen. Rosen (D-NV) will be joining the Committee.

 

The House Committee on Education and the Workforce is now renamed the House Committee on Education and Labor, as has been past practice when Democrats are in the majority in the House. Rep. Scott (D-VA) is serving as the Committee's Chairman and Rep. Foxx (R-NC) is serving as the Committee's Ranking Member.

 

ACTE National Policy Seminar with Agricultural Education Track – NPS is a bit later this year … March 25-27, 2019.  NAAE will pay the NPS registration fee for one representative from each of the state ag ed associations to participate in the NPS.  Details are here: https://www.naae.org/advocacy/nps.cfm.

This is a feature from the December 2018 edition of NAAE’s News & Views Newsletter. To read News & Views in its entirety, please visit this link.

 

How can it almost be 2019? Time sure flies when we are having fun in Ag Education! As we head into 2019, how do you plan to advocate for your ag program and for agricultural education in general?

 

We want to hear your ideas!

This is a feature from the November 2018 edition of NAAE’s News & Views Newsletter. To read News & Views in its entirety, please visit this link.

 

NAAE Convention is almost here! In just a couple of weeks our ag education family will convene in San Antonio for networking, professional development, business sessions, and so much more!

 

This month, we would like to know what kinds of advocacy resources would you like to have available from NAAE? Let us know your thoughts and hopefully we will be able to offer some great tools and resources to you!

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