Federal Policy and Legislation

Washington D.C., skyline with highways and monuments.

AACTE maintains a constant presence on Capitol Hill and with the current administration to advocate on behalf of the educator preparation profession.

For updates on current federal policies and AACTE’s legislative priorities, view the bimonthly members-only policy newsletter.

New Federal Regulations Impacting All Educator Preparation Programs

On July 1, 2024, new federal regulations take effect for all institutions that participate in Title IV student aid programs and offer programs leading to state professional licensure or certification.

AACTE has prepared a detailed FAQ to help members prepare for these new regulations.

In addition, on May 20, the Department of Education released its own FAQ document and a helpful flow chart on the new regulations.

Current policy and legislation related to educator preparation:

Elementary and Secondary Education Act
This act authorizes programs and accountability to support the improvement of the nation’s PK-12 education system. Title II of ESEA focuses on the federal role in supporting educator quality.

Higher Education Act
Title II of HEA authorizes programs that support reforms in teacher preparation and requires annual institutional and state reporting on the quality of programs.

TEACH Grants
This federal program supports the recruitment of high-quality teacher candidates for hard-to-staff fields and schools.

Teacher Quality Partnership Grants
This federal program supports partnerships between institutions of higher education and high-need local education agencies and schools to strengthen the teacher pipeline.

Special Education Personnel Preparation
The Special Education Personnel Preparation program is designed to ensure that children with disabilities are supported by fully qualified school personnel.

Institute of Education Sciences
The Institute of Education Sciences (IES) was created in 2002 through the Education Science Reform Act (ESRA, Title I of P.L. 107-279) as an independent research arm of the U.S. Department of Education.

Proposed Bills Supported by AACTE


Advocacy Letters to Congress, the Administration, or other Leaders

AACTE has joined other education organizations in augmenting voices on key issues as they emerge, signing on to advocacy letters to the Administration and Congress.  Read the Letters.

Federal Advocacy

While many of the decisions governing educator preparation are made at the state level, the federal government and the Congress have roles affecting the profession as well.

The most important aspect of engaging in federal advocacy is the power of the constituent voice. Members of Congress act based on the information provided to them first and foremost by their constituents. Over time, you want to build relationships with both members of Congress and their staff handling education so that you become one of the sources that officials consult for information and ideas related to educator preparation.

Get to know the resources offered through this site. You can watch recordings of federal update webinars, download printable guides for key stages of the advocacy process, and find links to other websites with resources and information on legislation, congressional votes, and more.

Remember to register to receive AACTE Action Alerts and visit this web page often for the latest resources and information to support your advocacy efforts.