Floor Debate On Reauthorization of the Federal Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) May Begin Soon

U. S. Senate floor action on the Every Child Achieves Act, S. 1177, the Senate version of a bill to reauthorize the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA), may begin as early as the week of June 22.  Although a vigorous floor debate is expected, S. 1177 passed out of committee by a unanimous, bipartisan vote.  The current version of the ESEA is commonly known as the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB).

Note:  A floor vote has not yet occurred on the House version, which includes several provisions supporting local school board governance and flexibility. The Student Success Act, H.R. 5, the U,S. House’s version of the ESEA modernization legislation, is still pending. Earlier this year, the House debated H.R. 5. on the floor but did not finish that debate; it stopped short of taking a vote on several amendments and did not vote on final passage.

School board members are encouraged to please contact your U.S. Senators and members of Congress to encourage continued action to modernize ESEA, which is long-overdue for reauthorization.  The National School Boards Association (NSBA) has prepared this sample message, which can be used for talking points in your conversations and correspondence with your U.S. Senators and Representatives.