Penn Hill Group’s Washington Wrap Up – February 22, 2016

A quick look back at the news from last week, compiled by Penn Hill Group:


The House Committee on Education and the Workforce will hold a committee hearing on policies and priorities of the U.S. Department of Education (ED) on Wednesday, February 24. Acting Secretary of Education John King will testify.

The House Committee on Education and the Workforce will hold a committee hearing on implementing the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) on Thursday, February 25. Acting Secretary King will testify.


The Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) will hold a committee hearing on education leaders’ perspectives on implementing ESSA on Tuesday, February 23. Gov. Gary Herbert (R-UT); Tony Evers, State Superintendent of Public Instruction, Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction; Dr. David Schuler, Superintendent, Township High School District #214; Katy Haycock, President, The Education Trust; Randi Weingarten, President, American Federation of Teachers, AFL-CIO; Delia Pompa, Senior Fellow of Education Policy, Migration Policy Institute; and Becky Pringle, Vice President, National Education Association will testify.

The Senate HELP Committee will hold an executive session on the nomination of John King to serve as Secretary of Education on Thursday, February 25.


The House Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies will hold a subcommittee hearing on the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ (HHS’) budget on Thursday, February 25. HHS Secretary Sylvia Burwell will testify.


President Obama signed H.R. 3033, the Research Excellence and Advancements for Dyslexia Act (READ Act), into law. This law requires the National Science Foundation (NSF) to spend at least $2.5 million each year on dyslexia research.

ED’s Office of Federal Student Aid issued a Dear Colleague letter notifying schools of the extension of the Perkins Loan Program through September 30, 2017, a result of the passage of the Federal Perkins Loan Program Extension Act of 2015.

ED continued negotiated rulemaking sessions this week on defense of repayment and other matters. A third session of meetings is expected to take place March 16–18.

The White House announced the My Brother’s Keeper Success Mentors Initiative and ED announced the Absences Add Up campaign; both efforts will focus on addressing chronic absenteeism.

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) filed charges against Stratford Career Institute, an online distance education school, for misleading consumers about its high school equivalency program, which the FTC alleges did not meet basic requirements in most states.

Nominations for a negotiated rulemaking panel to assist with the development of Title I ESSA regulations are due to ED next Thursday, February 25.