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Government Affairs Program ACTION ALERT


Remaining Eisenhower Programs Under Threat of Elimination

(Posted 3-18-02)



This update was originally sent out as an e-mail message to AGI's member societies.

IN A NUTSHELL: The House Education and the Workforce Committee is meeting this Wednesday (March 20th) to vote on legislation, H.R. 3801, that would eliminate the remaining programs of the Eisenhower programs for math and science educators -- the Eisenhower National Clearinghouse and the Eisenhower Regional Consortia. The flagship Eisenhower professional development state grants program was eliminated when President Bush signed the No Child Left Behind (NCLB) Act into law on January 8th.  In its place, NCLB authorized $450 million for a new math and science partnership program (Eisenhower was last funded at $485 million).  For fiscal year (FY) 2002, only $12.5 million was provided for these partnerships, and the president has requested the same level of funding for FY 2003. The combination of losing the remaining Eisenhower programs, if H.R. 3801 passes, and the low funding for the new partnerships would greatly reduce the resources available to elementary and secondary educators in science and mathematics. AGI encourages earth scientists to communicate the importance of maintaining support for science education to members of the House Education and the Workforce Committee and the House Appropriations Committee.

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The No Child Left Behind (NCLB) Act of 2001, which reauthorized the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, transformed the federal role in science and mathematics education.  Prior to the new legislation, which President Bush signed into law on January 8, 2002,  professional development for science and mathematics teachers was supported through the Department of Education's (DoEd) Eisenhower Professional Development Programs -- the Eisenhower National Clearinghouse (ENC) for Mathematics and Science Education, the Eisenhower Regional Mathematics and Science Education Consortia, and the Eisenhower Professional Development State Grants.  NCLB terminated the state grants portion of the Eisenhower program and in its place established the Math and Science Partnerships.

Both the clearinghouse and the consortia (known as the Eisenhower Network) were untouched by the ESEA reauthorization process, but an administration-supported reauthorization bill for the DoEd Office of Educational Research and Improvement (OERI) would eliminate these remaining programs. The Eisenhower Network (http://www.mathsciencenetwork.org) produces a wide variety of print and electronic publications for educators and parents that are free of charge via the Internet (http://www.enc.org).  It is well positioned to help math and science educators effectively implement the new programs established by "No Child Left Behind" by delivering a wealth of resources directly in the hands of teachers and parents in every state.

Rep. Michael Castle (R-DE), chairman of the House Subcommittee on Education Reform, introduced legislation on February 27th that would overhaul DoEd's OERI.  H.R. 3801, the Education Sciences Reform Act of 2002, would establish a new Academy of Education Sciences that would, according to the committee's summary, "oversee coordinated and high quality education research, statistics gathering, program evaluation, and dissemination of information."  At a February 28th hearing, Castle commented in his opening statement that he is "seeking to insulate our federal research, evaluation and statistics activities from partisan or undue influences, [to] put the needs of our teachers and students first, [to] insist on the use of rigorous scientific standards to identify and disseminate effective strategies and methods, and [to] ensure that program evaluations are impartial."  Under this proposal, the Academy of Education Sciences would remain a part of DoEd but would be "under the direction" of a new National Board of Education Sciences.

According to the House Education and the Workforce summary of the legislation at http://edworkforce.gov/issues/107th/educational/oeri/billsummary.htm, the new structure would establish regionally based grant programs that are currently used for programs such as the Eisenhower Network.  It also states that the regional boards "would have the authority to enter into grants and contracts -- which may include the continuation of funds to existing" contracts, such as the Eisenhower Network.  While the new legislation leaves the opportunity open for the continuation of these important science and mathematics programs, it does not guarantee them.

Although the No Child Left Behind Act authorized $450 million for the science and math partnerships (Eisenhower was last funded at $485 million), the FY2002 allocation and the FY2003 budget request would provide these programs only $12.5 million.  This level of funding represents less than five percent of the full authorization amount. Funding for the Eisenhower Network is provided through grants/multi-year contracts with OERI, which is listed in the budget documents as the Education Research, Statistics, and Assessments account.  Neither ENC nor the regional consortia are specifically requested within the president's FY 2003 budget proposal for DoEd. Castle's OERI restructuring legislation comes at a time when federal support for math and science education is already ebbing.

Education Committee Vote

The House Education and the Workforce Subcommittee on Education Reform approved H.R. 3801 in a March 13th markup (voting) session.  The full committee is scheduled to vote the bill on March 20th. AGI encourages geoscientists to communicate their support not only for improving the quality of math and science education but also for providing educators with the necessary tools by contacting their members of Congress.

Please call, fax, or email your representative, especially if he/she sits on the Education and the Workforce Committee or the House Appropriations Subcommittee (see below) that oversees funding for DoEd, to urge them to support the inclusion of full authorization language for the Eisenhower National Clearinghouse for Mathematics and Science Education (ENC) and the ten regional Eisenhower math and science consortia in the bill to reauthorize the Office of Educational Research and Improvement. With the loss of the Eisenhower state grants and the low funding request for science and math partnerships, ENC and the state consortia remain the only other math and science targeted programs for elementary and secondary educators.

Below are the fax number and email (when available) for members of the House Education and the Workforce Committee and the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor/HHS that oversees funding for DoEd. To call committee members or your own representative, use the Capitol Switchboard at (202) 224-3121.



HOUSE EDUCATION & THE WORKFORCE COMMITTEE

Republicans
John Boehner (OH, 8th), Chair 202-225-0704  john.boehner@mail.house.gov
Thomas Petri (WI, 6th)  202-225-2356
Marge Roukema (NJ, 5th)  202-225-9048  rep.roukema@mail.house.gov
Cass Ballenger (NC, 10th) 202-225-0316  cass.ballenger@mail.house.gov
Peter Hoekstra (MI, 2nd)  202-226-0779  tellhoek@mail.house.gov
Buch McKeon (CA, 25th)  202-226-0683  tellbuck@mail.house.gov
Michael Castle (DE, At Large) 202-225-2719  delaware@mail.house.gov
Sam Johnson (TX, 3rd)  202-225-1485
Jim Greenwood (PA, 8th)  202-225-9511  greenwoodpa@mail.house.gov
 Lindsay Graham (SC, 3rd)  202-225-3216
Mark Souder (IN, 4th)  202-225-3479  souder@mail.house.gov
Charles Norwood (GA, 10th)  202-226-5995  rep.charlie.norwood@mail.house.gov
Bob Schaffer (CO, 4th)  202-225-5870  rep.schaffer@mail.house.gov
Fred Upton (MI, 6th)  202-225-4986  tellupton@mail.house.gov
Van Hilleary (TN, 4th)  202-225-3272  van.hilleary@mail.house.gov
Vernon Ehlers (MI, 3rd)  202-225-5144  rep.ehlers@mail.house.gov
Thomas Tancredo (CO, 6th)  202-226-4623  tom.tancredo@mail.house.gov
Ernest Lee Fletcher (KY, 6th)  202-225-2122
Jim DeMint (SC, 4th)  202-226-1177  jim.demint@mail.house.gov
Johnny Isakson (GA, 6th)  202-225-4656  ga06@mail.house.gov
Bob Goodlatte (VA, 6th)  202-225-9681  talk2bob@mail.house.gov
Judy Biggert (IL, 13th)  202-225-9420
Todd Platts (PA, 19th)  202-226-1000
Patrick Tiberi (OH, 12th)  202-226-4523
Ric Keller (FL, 8th)  202-225-0999
Thomas Osborne (NE, 3rd)  202-226-1385
John Culberson (TX, 7th)  202-225-4381  john.culberson@mail.house.gov

Democrats
George Miller (CA, 7th), Ranking Member 202-225-5609  george.miller@mail.house.gov
Dale Kildee (MI, 9th)  202-225-6393  dkildee@mail.house.gov
Major Owens (NY, 11th)  202-226-0112
Donald Payne (NJ, 10th)  202-225-4160  donald.payne@mail.house.gov
Patsy Mink (HI, 2nd)  202-225-4987
Robert Andrews (NJ, 1st)  202-225-6583  rob.andrews@mail.house.gov
Tom Roemer (IN, 3rd)  202-225-6798  tim.roemer@mail.house.gov
Robert Scott (VA, 3rd)  202-225-8354  rcs@mail.house.gov
Lynn Woolsey (CA, 6th)  202-225-5163  lynn.woolsey@mail.house.gov
Lynn Rivers (MI, 13th)  202-225-3404  lynn.rivers@mail.house.gov
Ruben Hinojosa (TX, 15th)  202-225-5688  rep.hinojosa@mail.house.gov
Carolyn McCarthy (NY, 4th)  202-225-5758
John Tierney (MA, 6th)  202-225-5915
Ron Kind (WI, 3rd)  202-225-5739  ron.kind@mail.house.gov
Loretta Sanchez (CA, 46th)  202-225-5859  loretta@mail.house.gov
Harold Ford, Jr. (TN, 9th)  202-225-5663  rep.harold.ford.jr@mail.house.gov
Dennis Kucinich (OH, 10th)  202-225-5745
David Wu (OR, 1st)  202-225-9497  david.wu@mail.house.gov
Rush Holt (NJ, 12th)  202-225-6025  rush.holt@mail.house.gov
Hilda Solis (CA, 31st)  202-225-5467
Susan Davis (CA, 49th)  202-2252948  susan.davis@mail.house.gov
Betty McCollum (MN, 4th)  202-225-1968

HOUSE LABOR/HHS/EDUCATION APPROPRIATIONS SUBCOMMITTEE

Republicans
Ralph Regula (OH), Chair  202-225-3059
Ernest Istook (OK)  202-226-1463  istook@mail.house.gov
Dan Miller (FL)  202-226-0828
Roger Wicker (MS)  202-225-3549  roger.wicker@mail.house.gov
Ann Northup (KY)  202-225-5776  rep.northup@mail.house.gov
Randy Cummingham (CA)  202-225-2558
Kay Granger (TX)  202-225-5683  texas.granger@mail.house.gov
John Peterson (PA)  202-225-5796
Don Sherwood (PA)  202-225-9594

Democrats
Steny Hoyer (MD), Ranking Member  202-225-4300
Nancy Pelosi (CA)  202-225-8259  sf.nancy@mail.house.gov
Nita Lowey (NY)  202-225-0546  nita.lowey@mail.house.gov
Rosa DeLauro (CT)  202-225-4890  delauro.ct03@mail.house.gov
Jesse Jackson, Jr. (IL)  202-225-0899  comments@jessejacksonjr.org
Patrick Kennedy (RI)  202-225-3290  patrick.kenndy@mail.house.gov


Alert prepared by Margaret A. Baker, AGI Government Affairs Program

Sources:  Department of Education, House Education and the Workforce Committee, Library of Congress, and National Science Teachers Association.

Please send any comments or requests for information to the AGI Government Affairs Program.

Posted March 18, 2002


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