Penn Hill Group’s Washington Wrap-Up: October 11

Here’s a quick look at the news from last week (October 3-7) in Washington.


The Administration released a broad plan focused on teacher preparation programs. Part of this plan includes negotiated rulemaking on the current federal teacher preparation reporting requirements to focus on a few key outcome measures, such as student growth of program graduates and their job placement and retention in teaching positions.  The plan also proposes negotiated rulemaking for the TEACH grant program. These efforts on negotiated rulemaking are expected to get underway soon as part of a new round of such rulemaking focused on Title II and Title IV of the not-so-recently passed Higher Education Act of 2008.  An announcement seeking negotiators is expected in the next week or so.

The Department has continued outreach to states and stakeholders on the recently announced NCLB waiver initiative and also released a new FAQ document on the waivers.

Meetings continue as Chairman Kline works toward a possible fall/early winter mark-up on the remaining parts of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act that have not yet been marked-up.

On Tuesday, the Committee on Education & the Workforce held a hearing titled, “Modernizing the Workforce Investment Act: Developing an Effective Job Training System for Workers and Employers.”  The Committee is continuing to explore ways to reform the current WIA system – in areas such as increasing the role of community colleges; providing more flexibility at the state and local levels on how funds are used, as long as clear goals are met, and expanding the role of employer participation to ensure training is tied to real jobs.

The House Labor/HHS/Education Subcommittee released a draft of its appropriations bill late last week. Here, find a comparison (prepared by Penn Hill Group) of the main programmatic appropriations and legislative issues in the House, Senate, and Administration funding proposals.

The Senate HELP Committee continues to move forward toward its recently announced intention to mark-up ESEA on October 18.