The Forum on the Future of Public Education

Forthcoming Special Issue of Education Law and Policy Review on ESEA: New Ideas, Like them Or Not

by Timothy Brewer | Nov 17, 2015

Even though top negotiators in House and Senate have prepared a compromise draft ESEA bill that is ready to go to conference – one it is claimed the President would sign – I still have my doubts that House Republicans are going to agree to all of its terms before session’s end. 

My recent theme in the blog is that university-based scholars haven’t generated enough new and specific ideas about proposals for how to enhance provisions for equality of opportunity in ESEA.  Dr. Ann Blankenship of the University of Southern Mississippi and I are co-editing a forthcoming special double-issue of the  Education Law and Policy Review, a journal of the Education Law Association edited at the University of Georgia.   It should be out by January 2016 at the latest on this site.

The issue is published on the occasion of ESEA’s recent 50th anniversary.  However, our main criterion for acceptance of paper proposals was whether the authors would offer concrete recommendations for legislative and statutory changes.  As Dr. Blankenship and I will summarize in the introductory chapter, the numerous ideas that are generated run from improving mandates of various current programs, to incentivizing equity in bold and often innovative ways.  I am pleased that there is a mix of junior and more senior scholars represented among the authors, since it is crucial that the next generation sees it as vital to get involved in policymaking.

Beyond publishing these scholars’ ideas, our goals are to disseminate and publicize these findings as broadly as possible.  If this reauthorization doesn’t get done, we will be seeking active partners in that endeavor immediately.   (I can think of a few co-conspirators!  But that is for a future blog).

The 8 papers and their authors are:

Kara Finnigan, University of Rochester, Jennifer Holme, and Joanna Sanchez, University of Texas-Austin. Regional Equity as an Educational Policy Goal:  Tackling the Root Cause of Educational “Failure”

Emily Hodge, Montclair State University, Kendra Taylor, and Erica Frankenberg, Pennsylvania State University. Lessons from the Past, Model for the Future: A Return to Promoting Integration through ESEA

Megan Hopkins, Christine Marlsbury, and Zitlali Morales, University of Illinois-Chicago.  Responsive Federal Policy for Bi/Multilingual Students

Jack Jennings. Is Categorical Aid Still the Best Way to Attain Greater Equity in Education? Lessons from 50 Years and a New Idea

Christopher A. Suarez, Williams & Connolly. Reducing Socioeconomic Isolation through ESEA Reauthorization Grants

Benjamin Michael Superfine and Craig De Voto, University of Illinois-Chicago.  The ESEA and Teacher Workforce Management Systems

Nicholas P. Triplett, University of North Carolina-Charlotte, et al. Discipline Disproportionality, Student Achievement and the Reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA)

Tina Trujillo, University of California-Berkeley. Restoring ESEA’s Commitment to Equal Educational Opportunity: New Directions for the School Improvement Grant Program