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TAKE ACTION - Every Child Achieves Act of 2015
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Tell Congress to Support Education for Students with Disabilities!

 Contact Your Senators Now!

SUMMARY:

Chairman Alexander (R-TN) and Ranking Member Murray (D-WA) have shared a new bi-partisan draft bill to rewrite the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (known as No Child Left Behind (NCLB)) that does include important provisions that support students with disabilities such as a cap on the use of alternate assessments for students with the most significant cognitive disabilities!  While this is a definite win for students, the bill still does not go far enough to assure accountability for student outcomes, nor does it assure states or districts would provide intervention and support when groups of students aren’t meeting state standards, including students with disabilities.  

Congress must now hear from you! Join us in telling Congress “THANKS FOR SUPPORTING A CAP ON ALTERNATE ASSESSMENTS AND STUDENTS WITH DISABILITIES ALSO NEED ACCOUNTABILITY THAT MATTERS.”   By doing so, you can send a message to the Senate that protections in the use of alternate assessments will help keep more students in the general curriculum and on track for graduation but without meaningful accountability for their outcomes and giving them targeted support when they need it are equally as important.   The expectation that all students learn to high standards must be supported by action. 

TAKE ACTION; CONTACT YOUR SENATORS NOW:

Call 202-224-3121 and ask for your Senators.  Calls are best but if you prefer to use email, or need to look up your Senators’ names, go to http://www.senate.gov/general/contact_information/senators_cfm.cfm

Tell your Senators:

COPAA must be assured that Congress will maintain the important historical commitment ESEA makes to our nation’s children who are most in need of services and support to facilitate academic achievement by strengthen the accountability sections by including a clear requirement that states identify for intervention and support both chronically low-performing schools and schools where any group of students consistently fails to meet state-established goals.

Keep the 1% CAP on alternate assessment based on alternate achievement standards -WHY ALTERNATE ASSESSMENTS SHOULD ONLY BE USED FOR UP TO 1% OF STUDENTS

ESEA must also include requirements that assure:

 Ensure that the Secretary of Education has authority to enforce the law when states and districts have not met their legal obligations. 

 Evidence-based action/intervention occurs. States, districts and schools must take action when schools and districts are failing and groups of students are not meeting state-set standards, graduation goals or other state determined benchmarks. Without such accountability, groups of students in schools and/or districts could make little or no progress and never trigger the attention, support or intervention they need. When progress is not made or is insufficient, states must be held accountable via Title I dollars.

 N size matters. States and districts must report results including data related to enrollment and performance for all student groups with the only exception being if an “n” size in a cell falls below 10.

 Federal oversight to protect student civil rights. The Secretary must be allowed to regulate on key provisions that history shows are critical to assuring the protection of the civil rights of students and enforcing the law as written. 


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TELL Congress to OPPOSE any amendment that provides special treatment to any one group of students with disabilities

In strong bi-partisan fashion Congress has included many provisions in ECAA that are beneficial to all children with disabilities. 

As the Committee considers the mark-up of ECAA we urge you to reject any amendment that provides special treatment or consideration to children in  any one of the 13 disability categories under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA).  Through State and local efforts, reinforced by Elementary and Secondary and Education Act (ESEA) and the IDEA, we as a nation have made a commitment to educate every single one of our children and to provide them with the opportunities that a public education affords all children.  

Every penny used to teach teachers must benefit all students to achieve academically, learn to read, master math; we cannot focus solely on one diagnosis . 

Our members support students with many differing abilities or disability labels, who are entirely capable of learning to decode, and in too many cases are not being taught to read simply because the teachers have never been taught the science of reading in a way that benefits all.  



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