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house Bill H. Joint Res. 58

Does a Dept. of Education Regulation On Teacher Preparation Need to be Overturned?

Argument in favor

The Dept. of Education’s regulation is a top-down, one-size-fits-all approach to preparing teachers to educate students in the classroom and would make it harder for state and local governments to ensure teachers can be successful. Overturning the rule will give Congress a chance to craft a better solution.

Randi's Opinion
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02/06/2017
As a teacher educator, I have always been supportive of ensuring the highest quality from our future teachers. However, the regulation that the Obama administration put in place relies heavily on students' standardized test scores, which have been shown not to correlate with teacher performance, but with socioeconomic status of the student. Randi Weingarten of the American Federation of Teachers points out “The regulations will punish teacher-prep programs whose graduates go on to teach in our highest-needs schools, most often those with high concentrations of students who live in poverty and English-language learners — the exact opposite strategy of what we need."
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Wesley's Opinion
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02/06/2017
The nation should have access to fair and equitable education, but the federal government shouldn't dictate how that is achieved. A desired impact or result is one thing, but how should be left to states and or teachers... if the system isn't able to produce, that is not a function for D.C.
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MrLamming's Opinion
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02/06/2017
I am a teacher and I can guarantee that government regulation of teaching is driving good and experienced teachers out. Texas already requires several hundred continued education credits to renew a teaching certificate. Take testing away if you want more quality preparation.
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Argument opposed

The Dept. of Education’s rule is an appropriate way of ensuring that teachers are properly prepared when they go into the classroom. Linking teacher preparation to federal education grants helps ensure state and local governments are bringing in the right teachers and Congress shouldn’t overturn the rule.

Adam's Opinion
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02/06/2017
We cannot simply begin overturning laws with the promise that "we will do better later." Come to the table with solutions, not complaints.
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JohnWick's Opinion
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02/06/2017
Why is it every bill coming onto the floor is because "Obama overreached. I'm seriously tired of Republicans blaming Obama for pushing through Executive actions in his final days. After years of Congressional Republicans telling him "Not one!" He finally put it all into writing himself. The audacity of these people astounds me.
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Jane's Opinion
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02/06/2017
I have been an educator for nearly 50 years. Education is one of the greatest needs of our young and we can't afford to mess teacher preparation for political bickering. Remember elected officials need to represent the people not some special interest group. Thanks
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joint resolution Progress


  • EnactedMarch 27th, 2017
    The President signed this bill into law
  • The senate Passed March 8th, 2017
    Roll Call Vote 59 Yea / 40 Nay
  • The house Passed February 7th, 2017
    Roll Call Vote 240 Yea / 181 Nay
      house Committees
      Committee on Education and Labor
    IntroducedFebruary 1st, 2017

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What is House Bill H. Joint Res. 58?

This resolution would reject a Dept. of Education regulation that imposed a new federal standard for the education and preparation of teachers which linked teacher preparation to eligibility for federal grants. The rule was finalized during the final days of the Obama administration.

The Dept. of Education’s regulation established definitions and requirements for states and institutions of higher education to develop measures for assessing teacher preparation. It also established indicators that states were to be required to use in reporting program performance. Eligibility for federal TEACH Grants, which go to teachers that specialize in a certain subject or commit to working in low-income areas, would be linked to program performance. Those requirements were added in addition to similar, existing standards established by the Higher Education Act of 1965.

Under the Congressional Review Act, Congress is able to overturn regulations finalized within the last 60 legislative days with simple majority votes in both chambers. It would need to be signed into law by the president to take effect, and would also prohibit the agency that produced the regulation from issuing a similar rule without being directed to do so by Congress.

Impact

Students and their families; teachers; state and local governments; and the Dept. of Education.

Cost of House Bill H. Joint Res. 58

A CBO cost estimate is unavailable.

More Information

In-Depth: Sponsoring Rep. Brett Guthrie (R-KY) introduced this resolution to overturn the Dept. of Education rule which he and his colleagues worry “may lead to fewer teachers serving some of our nation’s most vulnerable children.” In a press release, Guthrie said:

“Teachers play a vital role in helping students learn and succeed, both in and out of the classroom. Unfortunately, as it did so often, the Obama administration acted unilaterally, overreached, and took a one-size-fits-all approach to how teachers are prepared for the classroom. As a result, the rules finalized by the Department of Education ignore the principles guiding recent bipartisan education reforms and would actually make it more difficult for state and local leaders to help ensure teachers are ready to succeed. This resolution will roll back those misguided rules and give us the opportunity to examine teacher preparation in the context of higher education reauthorization.”

This legislation has the support of four cosponsors in the House, all of whom are Republicans.


Media:

Summary by Eric Revell
(Photo Credit: www.ilmicrofono.it via Flickr / Creative Commons)

Official Title

Providing for congressional disapproval under chapter 8 of title 5, United States Code, of the rule submitted by the Department of Education relating to teacher preparation issues.

    As a teacher educator, I have always been supportive of ensuring the highest quality from our future teachers. However, the regulation that the Obama administration put in place relies heavily on students' standardized test scores, which have been shown not to correlate with teacher performance, but with socioeconomic status of the student. Randi Weingarten of the American Federation of Teachers points out “The regulations will punish teacher-prep programs whose graduates go on to teach in our highest-needs schools, most often those with high concentrations of students who live in poverty and English-language learners — the exact opposite strategy of what we need."
    Like (259)
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    We cannot simply begin overturning laws with the promise that "we will do better later." Come to the table with solutions, not complaints.
    Like (2121)
    Follow
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    Why is it every bill coming onto the floor is because "Obama overreached. I'm seriously tired of Republicans blaming Obama for pushing through Executive actions in his final days. After years of Congressional Republicans telling him "Not one!" He finally put it all into writing himself. The audacity of these people astounds me.
    Like (1191)
    Follow
    Share
    I have been an educator for nearly 50 years. Education is one of the greatest needs of our young and we can't afford to mess teacher preparation for political bickering. Remember elected officials need to represent the people not some special interest group. Thanks
    Like (874)
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    Wouldn't you want higher standards teaching your kids?! I'm a teacher and I sure do. This doesn't deter teachers from teaching-it's the low pay, lack of support and lack of funding and services to our kids- so fix that instead.
    Like (549)
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    As a relatively new teacher out of a top rated teaching program I can guarantee that teacher education programs do prepare us to work with all our students. It is not about standardized testing or a one-size-fits all approach. In fact, the complete opposite approach was taken; there is heavy focus on how to modify the curriculum and lesson plans to engage and meet the needs of all students. Anyone who is in support of this bill is seriously misinformed about how teacher education programs work.
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    Until there is something in writing more concrete than "Leaving it to the states"' repealing this regulation seems arbitrary. Also, with the looming approval of the least qualified EVER Sec of Ed, nothing should be changed.
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    We are already lagged in education compared to other countries. Decreasing teacher standards is not a solution. There must be accountability That being said, Mr Portman and Mr Joyce, the fact that you support Mrs Devos has confirmed, in my mind, that party has priority over people. She is the most unqualified person I have ever seen I WAS a republican and because of this point alone I will unlikely vote republican again.
    Like (110)
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    The nation should have access to fair and equitable education, but the federal government shouldn't dictate how that is achieved. A desired impact or result is one thing, but how should be left to states and or teachers... if the system isn't able to produce, that is not a function for D.C.
    Like (73)
    Follow
    Share
    I am a teacher and I can guarantee that government regulation of teaching is driving good and experienced teachers out. Texas already requires several hundred continued education credits to renew a teaching certificate. Take testing away if you want more quality preparation.
    Like (71)
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    How many things are going to be overturned simply to spite Obama's efforts?
    Like (66)
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    Nearly 40 years ago, right out of an Ivy League university, I was hired by a desperate inner-city district to teach 6th grade.. I had no idea what I was doing and wasted deserving students' time and future trying to learn on the job. Twenty-five years later I returned to teaching following a year of excellent teacher training. This time students got a good teacher.
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    Overturning this regulation is only a problem for you if (1) you're a teacher in a union and want to use the government to increase the barriers to entry so you have less competition for jobs, or if (2) you're a parent/child in an area where you are assigned to a particular school and not able to choose to attend a different school that might voluntarily opt only to hire teachers that meet more stringent requirements. The first really isn't a problem at all and I support breaking the powers of unions just as I would support breaking the power of any other government-protected monopoly. The second is the reason I support school choice - if I have the freedom to put my kid in a different school if I'm concerned about the quality of the teachers at one school, then it's not really an issue and people can self-select what they are comfortable with because no one is stuck with that situation. So yes I support this because it's plainly easy for the same concerns to be solved by increasing freedom rather than by restricting it.
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    The federal government has no place in regulating education. Let the states take care of themselves! Constitutionally, the powers not explicitly given to the federal government is reserved for states.
    Like (31)
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    Overturn this late night ruling as Obama makes his golf run to Palm Springs. All of Obama's last minute lame dog rulings need close inspection or simple repeal. Just another cave for the NEA dollars. Prep time is not teaching time.
    Like (25)
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    Deregulate teachers, reward them by parent and teacher reviews.
    Like (21)
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    The Federal Department of Education should be defunded and eliminated. Top down blackmail type education management is why our public school system has failed. All decisions, requirements, standards must be created and set up by the individual school district based on the needs of the population in that district. Forcing requirements and regulations under threat of lost funding does not and will not further the education of the children.
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    The control of public education should be devolved back to the states and taken away from any federal department. This can be best done by abolishing the DOE.
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    Teacher preparation should be left to the states. Teachers shouldn't be getting federal grant money, because then they have to do what the federal government tells them to do, in order to get that money. Communist Core has shown that it's a very BAD IDEA to let the federal government interfere in the education of our children! Just think how many parents were faced with the necessity of pulling their children out of public schools, because those schools were doing a poor job of EDUCATING them, but were doing a bang up job of INDOCTRINATING the kids to accept Communist ideas! No thank you, Uncle Sam! They'll get enough of that when they go off to college, unfortunately! Please repeal this regulation!
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    While I believe we need qualified teachers, I know that there are people with knowledge and skills who are not would like to reach and shouldn't be barred from teaching due to a lack of teacher certification. What if a retired CEO would like to teach in a middle school? Principals should have flexibility to hire whom they feel would do the best job. Currently a retired Supreme Court justice couldn't teach at a public school. Plus research shows that teaching programs at colleges are watered down many teachers graduating do not have the knowledge skills or abilities to effectively teach.
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