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 The U.S. Department of Education has issued guidance on how local educational agencies (LEAs, typically school districts) are supposed to use CARES Act COVID-19 relief funds to provide equitable services to students and teachers in private schools.  The guidance instructs LEAs to allocate funds for this purpose based on the proportion of all students residing in the district that are in private schools, even though the CARES Act itself clearly provides that the amount of funds should be based only on the proportion of low-income students in the district...

On March 28, 2020, Congress passed the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act (Public Law 116-136). The CARES Act contains several significant funding provisions for education, primarily embodied in the “Education Stabilization Fund” (Sections 18001-18008 of the Act). CLE has provided analysis of the elementary and secondary education funding in the CARES Act. Of particular note, CLE discusses State and local requirements (from the General Education Provisions Act) for participatory planning and operation, equity, sharing of effective practices, and monitoring. This...

CLE is closely monitoring federal guidance and submitted comments on pending legislation in response to the COVID-19 pandemic's effects on students generally, and in particular on low-income students, racial and ethnic minorities, English learners, and students with disabilities. CLE's comments address issues with the open-ended provisions of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act (as originally drafted) that provide the Secretary of Education with nearly unlimited unilateral authority to waive almost any of the provisions of three major laws – the Elementary and...

On December 10, 2018, CLE submitted comments to the Department of Homeland Security concerning DHS Docket No. USCIS 2010-0012; RIN 1615-AA22 Inadmissibility on Public Charge Grounds ("Public Charge Rule"). CLE opposed the Public Charge Rule because it would jeopardize the ability of students in immigrant families, both legal and those without documents, to succeed in school. In particular, CLE raised concerns that if the proposed regulation was finalized, (1) more students would arrive to school hungry and schools will have difficulty maintaining their school-wide lunch programs; (2) fewer...

In July 2019, CLE submitted comments to the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education’s (the “Department”) 603 C.M.R. § 4.00: Vocational Technical Education Regulations – Including May 7, 2019 Draft of Proposed Revisions for Discussion and Stakeholder Feedback (the “Department’s Draft Changes”). CLE's comments addressed a wide range of issues, including: equity in admissions, program quality, governance, and instructional staff, with the goal of ensuring that all students have access to high-quality career and technical education and are taught to the same challenging...

In June 2019, CLE received a grant from the Nord Family Foundation to expand its Access to Justice through Lay Advocacy Project.

The U.S. Department of Education recently released draft guidance (January 2019) for Title I's Supplement Not Supplant provisions. CLE filed extensive comments exploring positive proposed changes, major omissions, and in one case a major provision for which the guidance needs to be entirely rethought and rewritten in order to comply with, rather than undermine, important requirements, principles, and purposes of ESEA. ...

CLE opposes sex discrimination in all forms, believes that institutions of higher education and LEAs have affirmative obligations under Title IX to protect students on the basis of biological or assigned sex, gender identiy, and sexual orientation, and that students' rights to fair and equitable due process shall not be compromised. Click here to read CLE's comments to the NPRM;...

CLE is pleased to support the extensive comments prepared by Candace Cortiella, Director of the Advocacy Institute, that reflect a thoughtful and careful review of the three components of Results Driven Accountability ("RDA"): State Performance Plans/Annual Performance Reports, Annual Determinations, and Differentiated Monitoring and Support.

Read CLE's letter in support ...

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