Senate ESEA Reauthorization Update for July 14, 2015
On July 14, 2015, the Senate voted via roll call on five amendments to the Senate ESEA reauthorization draft known as the Every Child Achieves Act of 2015.
All Senate roll call details can be found here.
Two of those amendments concern opting out of ESEA-mandated state tests, Senator Lee’s (R-UT) Amendment 2162, which was rejected by a vote of 32-64, and Senator Isakson’s (R-GA) second opt-out amendment (his first being approved in committee), 2194, which was agreed to by a vote of 97-0. I wrote about these opt-out amendments in this July 14, 2015, post.
The House version of the ESEA reauth, The Student Success Act (SSA), includes an amendment allowing parents to opt out of ESEA testing. The House amendment could be perceived as “federal overreach” by a number of Senate Republicans. We’ll see. (I wrote about the House SSA in this post.)
Back to the Senate on July 14, 2015:
Senator Franken’s (D-MN) amendment 2093, “to end discrimination based on actual or perceived sexual orientation or gender identity in public schools,” was rejected by a vote of 52-45. All Democrats, some Republicans, and Sanders (Independent) voted in favor; only Republicans voted against.
Senator Booker’s (D-NJ) amendment 2169, “to require a State’s report card to include information on the graduation rates of homeless children and children in foster care,” was approved 56-40.
And Senator Scott’s (R-SC) Title I “portability” amendment 2132, “to expand opportunity by allowing Title I funds to follow low-income children,” was rejected 45-51. One of the key differences between the House version of the ESEA reauth and the Senate version is this portability of Title I funding. Only Republicans voted in favor of portability; all Democrats voted against, and some Republicans and Sanders (Independent) also voted against.
That’s all for Senate ESEA roll call votes on July 14, 2015. For additional info, including any voice votes, check this link on July 15, 2015 (the Senate runs behind on posting its daily summaries).
I am still waiting for Senator Tester’s (D-MT) amendment restricting federally mandated testing to once in elem, once in middle, and once in high school. Tester has filed two ESEA-related amendments recently, amendment 2129 on July 08, 2015, and amendment 2226 on July 13, 2015. The text for neither is available on the Senate site.
Stay tuned, America.