AACTE Advocacy

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U.S. Department of Education Updates

Stay current with AACTE’s updates on how recent DOE regulations will impact higher education and educator preparation during the global pandemic.

April 21, 2020 – When will Educators Receive COVID Relief Funding?–  Read a high-level summary of the CARES Act funding for elementary, secondary, and higher education.

April 17, 2020 – CARES Act: Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund Supporting Students – Learn how the Department of Education will allocate the funds to institutions of higher education and how the institutions will disperse the funds to students.

March 27, 2020 – Secretary DeVos Suspends Federal Student Loan Payments, Waives Interest During National Emergency – All borrowers with federally held student loans will automatically have interest rates set to 0% for at least 60 days and the option to suspend payments for at least two months.

March 23, 2020 – Updates: Department of Ed and Other Federal Agencies on COVID-19 Resources for Education – Explore the many resources that federal agencies have released to assist stakeholders in responding to the pandemic.

March 23, 2020 – Secretary DeVos Publishes New Resource on Accessibility and Distance Learning Options – The U.S. Department of Education clarifies that federal law should not be used to prevent schools from offering distance learning opportunities to all students, including students with disabilities.

March 12, 2020 – Department of Education Releases Guidance to IHEs on Interrupted Study Due to COVID-19 – The Department released guidance to institutions of higher education (IHE) on options for various interrupted study, including “student teaching.”

Capitol Hill Works to Address Coronavirus

Get an inside look into legislations enacted by Congress to provide relief and support higher education during the coronavirus pandemic.

March 5, 2021Cardona Takes Office Amidst School Openings and Spring Assessments Controversies – This article provides an update on the Biden Administration’s efforts to forge ahead with school reopening and vaccines for teachers as Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona takes office.

March 2, 2021Biden Administration Proceeds with Key Education Policy, Names Education Appointees – Congress moves closer to the enactment of the $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan— the COVID-relief reconciliation bill.

February 6, 2021Congress Advances COVID Relief and Secretary of Education Confirmation President Biden COVID relief proposal moves forward in the House while the Senate HELP Committee Confirms Miguel Cardona for Secretary of Education.

December 11, 2020Desperate Circumstances Prompt a Desperate Call on Congress – AACTE joined like-minded institutions in writing a letter to congressional leaders in updating their earlier findings regarding four key COVID-19-related economic indicators that are placing significant financial burdens on higher educational institutions.

December 8, 2020AACTE Sends Policy Priorities to Biden-Harris Education Transition Team – AACTE proposes COVID-19 relief measures as a path to building education back better.

October 15, 2020Hirono, Booker Announce Legislation to Improve Distance and Blended Learning for K-12 Schools During COVID-19 – This article features comments by AACTE President and CEO Lynn M. Gangone on behalf of the Association in support of the legislation

July 20, 2020 – Senate Debates Funding for Re-opening Schools – Learn about the debate over placing conditions—such as returning to school full time or privatization measures—on additional federal funding for COVID relief.

July 13, 2020 – Opening Schools in the Fall Is a Political Hot Potato – Read about the Trump Administration’s funding threats to schools that do not fully open in the fall and newest Congressional education bills.

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AACTE Thought Leadership Articles

Recent articles in the AACTE thought leadership series highlight critical changes affecting education today due to the coronavirus. Read more about the series.

January 29, 2021Critical Capacity: COVID-19 and the Future of Educator Preparation ProgramsAACTE Board member Kathleen DaBoll-Lavoie reports on the impact of the pandemic on educator preparation programs and the pipeline of new teachers entering classrooms in 2021 could exacerbate the teacher shortage and explores the scope of the problem and actions to take in this published editorial.

January 7, 2021 – Making Connections in Times of CrisisAndrew J. Schiera of the University of Pennsylvania Graduate School of Education discusses how preparing the nation’s teachers and social justice educators in today’s virtual world requires blurring boundaries, democratizing knowledge, and rethinking hierarchies.

May 5, 2020 – Leading During Difficult Times–  AACTE interviewed board member Dale-Elizabeth Pehrsson, president of Clarion University of Pennsylvania, to discuss leadership in higher education and how she is guiding her institution through the COVID-19 crisis

May 1, 2020 – Beware the Solution That Is Not About the Problem: Reflections on Education and the COVID-19 Shock– In the last few weeks, U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos put forward three initiatives intended to privatize the provision of public education. AACTE consultant and former senior vice president Jane West explores the impact such actions have had in the past and lessons learned..

April 7, 2020 – Special Education Equity in the Era of COVID-19– In this article, President and CEO Lynn M. Gangone and Jacqueline Rodriguez, assistant vice president of Programs and Professional Learning, examine challenges in providing equity to special education students and opportunities to infuse technological literacy throughout special education programs

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The Coronavirus Impact on Colleges of Education

AACTE is accepting articles about the challenges and successes your college of education is experiencing while implementing new ways of teaching and learning. What trends are impacting institutions in your state or region? In what areas can the educator preparation community unite to help address and move the profession forward during this time? Submit complete articles to AACTE’s Content Strategist Katrina Norfleet at knorfleet@aacte.org.

July 24, 2020 – NACTE Partners with Nebraska Department of Education on Guidance for Future Teachers During Pandemic – Sara Skretta of the NACTE leadership team describes how its recommendations resulted in NDE guidance that provides support to EPPs during the pandemic that will enable students to continue moving forward as they pursue their teacher certification.

July 2, 2020 – MACTE Successfully Advocates for Michigan EPPs – Beth Kubitskey and Anne Tapp of the Michigan Association of Colleges for Teacher Education detail how the local chapter successfully advocated for  maximum flexibility for institutions to customize programming for candidates during the transition caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

March 23, 2020 – Teaching Advocacy to Preservice Students More Important Now than Ever – Allison Bosser of Highpoint University used the visit she and her students made to their congressman last May as the impetus for retooling her courses to include advocacy opportunities—a timely effort, as legislators make rapid decisions during the coronavirus crisis.

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AACTE Recommendation to Support PK-12 Students with Disabilities During COVID-19

AACTE encourages partnerships between district and educator preparation programs to address the increased workforce demands for special educators in our nation’s schools. Read the AACTE Recommendations Letter.


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.