April 7, 2003

In this Issue:

1. Subcommittee Approves Bill to Improve Results for Students with Disabilities, Ease Paperwork for Teachers

Source: edworkforce.house.gov/press - April 2, 2003

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. House Education & the Workforce Subcommittee on Education Reform, chaired by Rep. Mike Castle (R-DE), today approved the Improving Education Results for Children with Disabilities Act (H.R. 1350), legislation that makes significant reforms to the nation's special education law to improve academic achievement for children with disabilities. The legislation passed the subcommittee by voice vote, with no recorded opposition from committee Democrats or Republicans. To access the full bill online go to: http://thomas.loc.gov/cgi-bin/query/z?c108:h.r.1350:

2. Early Childhood Educator Professional Development Program; Notice Inviting Applications for New Awards for Fiscal Year (FY) 2003, CFDA NO: 84.349A [OESE]

Source: Federal Register: March 31, 2003 (Volume 68, Number 61)

The purpose of the Early Childhood Educator Professional Development Program, authorized by section 2151(e) of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) as added by the No Child Left Behind Act, Public Law 107-110, is to enhance the school readiness of young children, particularly disadvantaged young children, and to prevent them from encountering difficulties once they enter school. The program is designed to improve the knowledge and skills of early childhood educators who work in communities that have high concentrations of children living in poverty.

Projects funded under the Early Childhood Educator Professional Development Program provide high-quality, sustained, and intensive professional development for these early childhood educators in how to provide developmentally appropriate school-readiness services for preschool-age children that are based on the best available research on early childhood pedagogy and on child development and learning, including the age-appropriate development of oral language, phonological awareness, print awareness, alphabet knowledge, and numeracy skills. These grants are part of the President's early childhood initiative, ``Good Start, Grow Smart,'' and complement other early learning grant programs, such as Early Reading First, by helping States and local communities strengthen early learning for young children. The Department intends to disseminate information about the funded projects that prove to be effective professional development.

Applications Available: March 31, 2003.
Deadline for Transmittal of Applications: May 16, 2003.

For more information go to: http://www2.ed.gov/legislation/FedRegister/announcements/2003-1/033103b.html

3. Addressing Child Care Challenges for Children with Disabilities: Proposals for CCDBG and IDEA Reauthorizations

Source: Center for Law and Social Policy - March 2003

This year, Congress will once again consider the reauthorization of the two statutes that support the development of young children with disabilities and their families—the Child Care and Development Block Grant (CCDBG) and the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). Together these laws provide the resources for the early childhood education infrastructure for young children with disabilities in all states. This paper discusses the benefits of providing quality child care and early intervention services to children with disabilities; describes the challenges families face in finding appropriate, high-quality child care for children with disabilities; provides background on CCDBG, IDEA, and other relevant statutes, as well as the children they serve; and proposes recommendations for CCDBG and IDEA reauthorizations. To access the report online go to http://www.clasp.org/publications/clasp_ES.pdf

4. Guide Highlights Federal Funding Sources for Early Childhood Education Programs and Services

Source: MCH Alert - March 28, 2003

A Child Advocate's Guide to Federal Early Care and Education Policy provides an overview of major and minor federal programs of interest to early childhood advocates. Produced by the National Association of Child Advocates, the guide presents information on the history and key features of six major federal early childhood education funding sources and programs. The guide also presents information on federal early childhood programs that provide smaller-scale funding opportunities. The guide can assist advocates by highlighting opportunities that federal programs provide to secure funding or to help implement programs. The guide is available at http://www.voicesforamericaschildren.org/Content/ContentGroups/Publications1/Voices_for_Americas_Children/ECE1/20031/ECEFederalGuide.pdf [Note: Link checked on 5/6/2009 - this document is no longer available online.]

[Originally published in MCHAlert © 2003 National Center for Education in Maternal and Child Health and Georgetown University. Reprinted with permission.]

5. Education Department Issues Proposed Rules on Accountability for Children with the Most Significant Cognitive Disabilities

Source: www.ed.gov/PressReleases - March 24, 2003

The U.S. Department of Education (ED) last week issued, and asked for public comment on, proposed rules governing state and local accountability for the academic achievement of students with the most significant cognitive disabilities. For more information go to: http://www2.ed.gov/news/pressreleases/2003/03/03242003a.html