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AACTE supports several bills introduced during the first session of the 115th Congress. Below is a list of these bills, hyperlinks to the full bill text, the original sponsor, and a short summary about each bill. This page will be updated to reflect additions of new bills as they are introduced throughout the 115th Congress.
Wondering if your representative or senator has cosponsored a bill? Go to www.congress.gov and search on the bill number (e.g., S. 457) to find out.
The Educator Preparation Reform Act (EPRA) – H.R. 3636 & S. 1694
Rep. Ruben Kihuen (D-NV)
Sen. Jack Reed (D-RI)
EPRA does the following:
The Dream Act of 2017 – H.R. 3440 & S. 1615
Rep. Lucille Roybal-Allard (D-CA)
Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC)
This bill would provide a path for young immigrants who entered the United States as children to attain lawful permanent residency status if they meet the following requirements:
In addition, the bill restores the ability of states to grant in-state tuition to undocumented students on the basis of residency – but states are not required to do this.
The Rural Educator Support and Training Act (REST Act) – S. 457
Sen. Jon Tester (D-MT)
This bill amends the Higher Education Act of 1965 and the Elementary and Secondary Act of 1965 to (1) establish several new grant programs for students training to become educators in rural schools and (2) enhance federal student loan forgiveness for rural educators. It contains the following provisions:
The Native Educator Support and Training Act (NEST Act) – S. 458
Sen. Jon Tester (D-MT)
This bill amends the Higher Education Act of 1965 to establish scholarships, loan forgiveness plans, and training programs for educators who commit to teaching in Native American or Bureau of Indian Education (BIE) schools. The bill does the following:
Recipients of the scholarships must commit to working for a BIE school, a school serving Native Americans, or other specified schools and agencies for the greater of 3 years or the number of school years that the scholarship funded.
The Bar Removal of Individuals who Dream and Grow our Economy Act (BRIDGE Act) – H.R. 496 & S. 128
Rep. Mike Coffman (R-CO)
Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC)
This bill amends the Immigration and Nationality Act to provide that the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) (1) shall grant a three-year provisional protected presence to a qualifying immigrant, (2) may not remove the immigrant from the United States unless such protected presence is rescinded, and (3) shall provide such immigrant with employment authorization.
An immigrant is eligible for such protected presence and employment authorization if the immigrant
Teacher Health and Wellness Act – H.R. 2544
Rep. Tim Ryan (D-OH)
This bill provides support for the profession by creating a five-year pilot study at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) aimed at reducing teacher stress, increasing teacher health, increasing teacher retention, and ultimately boosting student achievement. The bill asks NIH to study the following:
The bill requires a report of the findings to be submitted to the committees of jurisdiction and made available to the public.
The Teachers Are Leaders Act – S. 1413
Sen. Chris Coons (D-DE)
The Teachers Are Leaders Act would authorize an allowable use of funds under the existing Teacher Quality Partnerships grant program in the Higher Education Act to allow high-need schools and colleges to partner together to
Equal Access to Quality Education Act of 2017 – H.R. 4049
Rep. Judy Chu (D-CA)
This bill would allow the U.S. Secretary of Education to award grants on a competitive basis to eligible partnerships to develop and strengthen high-quality pathways for teaching professionals, to create professional induction programs for the teaching profession, and to provide a stable and collaborative learning environment for educators and students.
Eligible partnerships must include a high-need local educational agency and an institution of higher education (IHE). Nonprofit and teacher organizations may also be included in such partnerships.
Grantees would be required to use the funds for one of the following:
In addition to the required uses, grantees could use the funds to provide support to mentor teachers, prepare general education teachers to serve students with disabilities and English language learners, establish professional learning communities, and support high-quality professional development and teacher preparation in other ways.
Priority for awarding grants would go to partnerships that demonstrate the use of a valid and reliable teacher performance assessment, and either
For questions about any of the bills, contact AACTE Government Relations Director Deborah Koolbeck.
Last Updated August 2017
Staff Contact: Ward Cummings