Cutting the federal ties: Step 1

Reposting Wendell Ashby’s post from Facebook.

ACTION ITEM UPDATE: Contact the Executive Appropriations Committee, your Legislators, Superintendents, and School Board members today to support a one-time non-educational allocation, $30 million, to allow for the cutting of Federal ties in Utah’s education.

Members of the State School Board are asking the Legislature for one-time set aside funds, $30 million. This allows the Board to say to the Federal Department of Education, Utah does not need an ESEA Flexibility Waiver and has the money to control our Title 1, tutoring, etc. funds. This restores Utah autonomy for our standards (Do we want Common Core?), teacher and school evaluations, data privacy for students, etc… Please ask the Legislature to support this measure today. Contact the Executive Appropriations Committee, listed below, your Superintendent, and State and School Board representatives, asking them to support these one-time funds, and cut the Federal ties. The Appropriations Committee meets Tuesday the 17th & Wednesday the 18th, to determine priority of expenditures.

Here is why:
In order to get out of some of the onerous provisions of No Child Left Behind, Utah accepted an ESEA Flexibility Waiver. The Waiver required (and the previous Race To The Top grant application incentivized) adoption of Common Core State Standards and Assessments, State Longitudinal Data System, & Teacher and School Accountability measures.

These requirements significantly limit Utah’s autonomy over education, but provide flexibility in program specific funding. A new application for a three-year ESEA Flexibility Waiver is due in March to the US Department of Education. If Utah renews the waiver we are tied to the above provisions for the next three years!

If we do not renew the waiver we would have more autonomy over our standards, data collection practices, school and teacher evaluations. The concern has been without the Waiver we would face a required sudden reallocation of funds. (We would not lose Federal funding, just some directive over how portions are to be used.) Therefore members of the State School Board are asking the State Legislature to provide funds in the amount of $30 million, one-time non-educational funds, in order to be prepared and offset these requirements.

This Tuesday and Wednesday the State Executive Appropriations Committee will meet in the Legislature to determine the expenditures for this year. These $30 million non-educational funds must be added to the appropriations. These funds give assurance of Utah’s budgetary preparation to members of the State Board of Education to not renew the waiver.

Please contact today the Executive Appropriations Committee members listed below. Let’s cut some Federal ties, and get one hand out from behind our back! ;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;

Find your other elected officials here:

Sen. Lyle W. Hillyard (R), Senate Chair
Rep. Dean Sanpei (R), House Chair
Sen. Jerry W. Stevenson (R), Senate Vice Chair
Rep. Brad L. Dee (R), House Vice Chair
Sen. J. Stuart Adams (R)
Sen. Jim Dabakis (D)
Sen. Gene Davis (D)
Sen. Luz Escamilla (D)
Sen. Peter C. Knudson (R)
Sen. Karen Mayne (D)
Sen. Wayne L. Niederhauser (R)
Sen. Ralph Okerlund (R)
Rep. Patrice M. Arent (D)
Rep. Joel K. Briscoe (D)
Rep. Rebecca Chavez-Houck (D)
Rep. James A. Dunnigan (R)
Rep. Francis D. Gibson (R)
Rep. Gregory H. Hughes (R)
Rep. Brian S. King (D)
Rep. Brad R. Wilson (R)
Greta G. Rodebush, Administrative Assistant
Steven M. Allred, Deputy Director
Jonathan Ball, Director

4 thoughts on “Cutting the federal ties: Step 1”

  1. To the executive appropriations committee- I am asking you to supply the state board with $30 million to not refile the ESEA waiver. Thank you for your time in reading this and the extensive thoughts on these very important actions to helping our state and education system becoming better and more independent.

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