News in Brief: A Washington Roundup
House Bill Makes Changes to Impact Aid
The House passed legislation to reauthorize the federal impact-aid program last week that makes minor revisions to the funding formula.
Under the $906 million program, school districts in areas where property-tax revenue is decreased by federal installations such as military bases receive money to help compensate them. The House bill, HR 3616, seeks to create a more equitable payment system by giving districts designated as "heavily impacted" a larger basic support payment.
The bill is intended to ensure that as the military privatizes more housing, affected districts would receive the same amount of money for military dependents living in private housing as on bases.
It would also require the Department of Education to notify districts that missed impact-aid filing deadlines and give them leeway to turn in their applications.
The White House released a statement saying that President Clinton would seek changes to the proposal in the Senate, where similar legislative language is included in the omnibus bill to reauthorize the Elementary and Secondary Education Act. Mr. Clinton does not, for example, want districts to receive as much money for students in private housing because, he says, they do not impose as large a financial burden.
—Joetta L. Sack
School Groups To Promote Selective Service System
Federal officials and five education groups have formed an alliance to get the word out about the importance of registering with the Selective Service System.
The announcement of the alliance coincided with the release of a Selective Service report last week showing that nearly 20 percent of young men do not sign up with the civilian agency as required. The service keeps track of people who could be drafted for military duty in case of an emergency.
Federal law requires men to sign up within 30 days of their 18th birthdays. If they don't, they are not eligible for federal student loans, government jobs, and other benefits.
Working with the Education Department and education groups, the Selective Service is launching a initiative, Selective Service Week, that will include school and community-based activities.
The groups joining the efforts include the American Association of Collegiate Registrars and Admissions Officers, the American School Counselors Association, the Center for Civic Education, the National Association of Secondary School Principals, and the National Association of State Boards of Education.
—Joetta L. Sack
Vol. 19, Issue 37, Page 34