Principles for HEA Reauthorization 2019


May 9, 2019

Principles for the Reauthorization of the Higher Education Act

The education profession is facing multiple challenges, including declining enrollment in educator preparation programs, a diversity gap between teachers and students, and retention of teachers. For example, teacher shortages are critical in most states: 48 states report shortages in special education; over 40 states report shortages in math and science; and 31 states report shortages in English learner teachers. These challenges are acute across different geographic areas, impacting both rural and urban districts. Investments in deep partnerships between high need schools and institutions of higher education are a proven strategy to address recruitment and retention. In addition, strong student financial aid programs offer critical incentives and support for potential teachers to enter the profession, to remain in the profession, and to increase teacher diversity.

The reauthorization of the Higher Education Act (HEA) offers a unique opportunity to address these challenges and better meet the needs of our nation’s classrooms. The federal government has an important role in supporting efforts to ensure that all children have access to a diverse, profession-ready educator workforce.

CTQ recommends that HEA reauthorization adhere to the following principles:

1. Increase investments in and improve the administration of grant and loan forgiveness programs for prospective teachers and leaders including:

The Teacher Loan Forgiveness Programs

The Loan Forgiveness Program in Areas of National Need 

The Public Service Loan Forgiveness

Teacher Education Assistance for Colleges and Higher Education (TEACH) Grant Program, including significantly increasing the award value

2. Sustain and augment the Teacher Quality Partnership Grant Program

Increase authorization level to at least $500 million to ensure that the program can more comprehensively transform education preparation and be responsive to the workforce needs of the communities that they serve.

Expand the allowable programs to include school leader residencies and educator career ladders.

Include opportunities to expand the reach of the program through intentional scaling up of successful practices, including working with the state.

Maintain current law on the required partners.

Require TQP grantees to incorporate evidence-based and innovative preparation practices, which may include Universal Design for Learning, Restorative Justice practices, Multi-Tiered Systems of Support, trauma-informed practices, implicit bias training, and Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports.

3. Maintain and support states in their role to hold all educator preparation to the same set of standards and accountable through appropriate data collection to inform continuous improvement. Ensure that states in their accountability role for educator preparation develop and implement requirements that address both efficacy and equity.

4. Strengthen provisions to better support the preparation of early childhood educators. This includes:

Grant and loan forgiveness programs for current and prospective early childhood educators and

Educator preparation program provisions that include early childhood education preparation programs.

5. Maintain and increase investments in programs that support a diverse educator workforce, including the Augustus F. Hawkins Centers of Excellence program; Title III programs that support Historically Black Colleges and Universities, Tribal Colleges and Universities, Predominantly Black Institutions, Alaska Native and Hawaiian-Serving Institutions, Asian American and Native American Pacific Islander-Serving Institutions, Native AmericanServing Institutions, and Hispanic-Serving Institutions; and Title V programs that support Hispanic-Serving Institutions. 6. Maintain and deepen the investment in the programs in Part B of Title II of the Higher Education Act, which support diversifying the educator profession including educators at institutions of higher education, ensuring all teachers are prepared to teach students with disabilities, and addressing the shortage of educator preparation faculty in high-need fields at institutions of higher education.

The Coalition for Teaching Quality

The Coalition for Teaching Quality represents national civil rights, disability, parent, student, community and education organizations advocating for all students to have access to fully prepared and effective educators.

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