Penn Hill Group’s Washington Wrap-Up: February 13

Here’s a quick look at the news from last week (February 6-10) in Washington.


President Obama announced Thursday that his Administration will grant ESEA waivers to 10 of the 11 States that originally applied in November.  The Department of Education has put out apress release, and one page documents outlining the changes between the State’s original applications and their final approved waivers, as well as the full text of the approved waivers.

Additionally, Assistant Secretary for Planning, Evaluation, and Policy Development Carmel Martin and Acting Assistant Secretary for Elementary and Secondary Education Michael Yudin, held a call Friday to discuss the approval of these 10 states’ applications. They encouraged interested individuals to review the posted documents, and committed to providing additional guidance on items such as graduation rates for high school accountability. Any additional questions can be emailed to


Chairman Kline outlined his vision for the final pieces of his ESEA reauthorization proposals in aspeech on Thursday at the American Enterprise Institute.  Summaries and the full text of the legislation Kline unveiled during the speech can be found here: Student Success Act (H.R. 3989) and the Encouraging Innovation and Effective Teachers Act (H.R. 3990).  The Committee will hold a hearing on these two bills on Thursday, February 16 at 10:00 a.m.  A mark-up is expected in late February or early March.


The Senate held a hearing on Wednesday on “The Promise of Accessible Technology – Challenges and Opportunities.” The hearing is the first in a series, Harkin said, of hearings that will focus on the use of educational technology to boost student achievement. Future hearings will cover blended learning, professional development and Open Educational Resources.


The Administration will release the President’s FY13 Budget on Monday, February 13. The Department of Education will hold a briefing on the education portion of the budget on Tuesday, February 14 at 10:00 a.m. in the Department’s auditorium.