News in Brief: A Washington Roundup

August 08, 2001 | Corrected: February 23, 2019 3 min read
  • Save to favorites
  • Print

Corrected: The first bill number mentioned in the item, “Math-Science Bill Clears House,” is incorrect. The correct bill number is HR 1858.

House Begins Work on OERI Revision

Rep. Michael N. Castle, R-Del., who chairs the newly renamed Education Reform Subcommittee of the House Education and the Workforce Committee, has kicked off the first of what he promises will be several hearings this year on improving education research.

Mr. Castle, at the July 17 meeting, said he hopes to get a bill reauthorizing the Department of Education’s office of educational research and improvement out of his subcommittee by year’s end.

Last year, Mr. Castle proposed breaking the research office out of the department and making it independent. (“House Plan Would Create Research ‘Academy’,” Aug. 2, 2000.) But at the urging of subcommittee Democrats, he has revised his bill to keep the agency in the Education Department—at least nominally.

Rep. Castle did not say at the hearing last month whether he planned to try again to split off the research agency. But he promised that whatever measure emerged from his panel would not be “status quo.”

Although fully funded, the OERI has been operating without formal congressional authority for two years.

—Debra Viadero

Panel To Study NAEP Use as Check on Tests

The governing board that oversees the National Assessment of Educational Progress has formed an ad hoc committee to figure out just what it means to use the NAEP to “confirm” state test results.

Under legislation now pending in Congress, states could receive financial rewards or penalties based on progress on their own state tests, but only if those results were “confirmed” by NAEP (or, in the case of the House’s version of the bill, by another national test of each state’s choosing). The congressionally mandated assessment tests a sampling of students in key subjects.

The ad hoc committee of the National Assessment Governing Board plans to prepare a report by next March that discusses issues related to using NAEP to confirm state test results, including some possible models for how the “confirmation” process might work.

—Lynn Olson

President Approves Extra Title I Funding

While lawmakers haven’t agreed yet on how much to increase the Department of Education’s budget next year, they just raised the bar.

President Bush last month signed supplemental spending legislation that kicks in an extra $161 million for Title I grants to school districts in the current fiscal year. That brings the revised total for the program to $8.62 billion for fiscal 2001.

The additional money is the result of a political compromise that tinkers with the formulas used to calculate how much every state and district receives.

Because of geographic shifts in population and poverty levels, some states and districts technically qualify for less Title I aid, or none at all.

The compromise provides enough money to allow each state and district to receive the greater of two options for distributing the aid: Either it will receive the same amount as the previous year, or it will receive the amount intended under the Title I statutory formulas.

—Erik W. Robelen

Math-Science Bill Clears House

The House approved two bills last week that seek to improve math and science instruction.

Both bills, approved on a voice vote July 30, would operate out of the National Science Foundation.

HR 1158 is modeled in part on a proposal by President Bush to establish partnerships between universities and school districts to improve K-12 mathematics and science education. It would authorize the NSF to distribute $200 million a year from fiscal 2002, which begins Oct. 1, through fiscal 2006.

In addition, the bill would authorize several other smaller initiatives, such as setting up four university research centers on teaching and learning, and awarding scholarships to top math and science majors in exchange for a commitment to teach two years for each year they received a scholarship.

The other bill, HR 100, would authorize $50 million a year in grants to colleges and universities to establish and run master-teacher programs in math and science.

—Erik W. Robelen

A version of this article appeared in the August 08, 2001 edition of Education Week as News in Brief: A Washington Roundup


Jobs Virtual Career Fair for Teachers and K-12 Staff
Find teaching jobs and other jobs in K-12 education at the EdWeek Top School Jobs virtual career fair.
English-Language Learners Webinar English Learners and the Science of Reading: What Works in the Classroom
ELs & emergent bilinguals deserve the best reading instruction! The Reading League & NCEL join forces on best practices. Learn more in our webinar with both organizations.
This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Teaching Webinar
Challenging the Stigma: Emotions and STEM
STEM isn't just equations and logic. Join this webinar and discover how emotions fuel innovation, creativity, & problem-solving in STEM!
Content provided by Project Lead The Way

EdWeek Top School Jobs

Teacher Jobs
Search over ten thousand teaching jobs nationwide — elementary, middle, high school and more.
View Jobs
Principal Jobs
Find hundreds of jobs for principals, assistant principals, and other school leadership roles.
View Jobs
Administrator Jobs
Over a thousand district-level jobs: superintendents, directors, more.
View Jobs
Support Staff Jobs
Search thousands of jobs, from paraprofessionals to counselors and more.
View Jobs

Read Next

Education Briefly Stated: February 7, 2024
Here's a look at some recent Education Week articles you may have missed.
8 min read
Education Briefly Stated: January 31, 2024
Here's a look at some recent Education Week articles you may have missed.
9 min read
Education Briefly Stated: January 17, 2024
Here's a look at some recent Education Week articles you may have missed.
9 min read
Education In Their Own Words The Stories That Stuck With Us, 2023 Edition
Our newsroom selected five stories as among the highlights of our work. Here's why.
4 min read
102523 IMSE Reading BS
Adria Malcolm for Education Week