ASCD Legislative Agenda
2017 ASCD Legislative Agenda
Developed by ASCD members, the 2017 ASCD Legislative Agenda (PDF) outlines the association's public policy priorities.
The American education system embodies the nation's core principles of opportunity, equality, and inclusiveness. Our schools unify and enlighten an ever more diverse population of children whose human potential is our greatest national resource. Educators strive to provide each student—regardless of circumstance or status—with a comprehensive education from early childhood through graduation. Educators, families, communities, and policymakers have a collective responsibility to care for and educate the whole child. The federal government plays an important and active role in supporting these efforts through its leadership in promoting equity in opportunities, excellence in outcomes, and accountability for public funds.
The bipartisan policies enacted in the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) provide systemic stability after several years of uncertainty. The law's requirements allow long-term planning while offering states and districts an appropriate amount of flexibility to establish their own definitions of student success and methods to achieve them. To ensure the success of the law and its goals, national leaders must oversee its implementation with fidelity so that all state plans provide an equitable, well-rounded education focused on the whole child.
All children deserve to develop to their fullest potential, irrespective of their race, gender, culture, linguistic background, ability, sexual orientation, religion, socioeconomic status, or nation of origin. In working to safeguard all students with the full range of civil rights protections, educators must work to ensure that learning environments are free of bias, discrimination, or disproportionate result. All students deserve to attend schools in districts whose funding is sufficient, sustained, and equitably distributed to ensure that they are healthy, safe, engaged, supported, and challenged.
No matter where they attend school, all students must be provided a safe, healthy, and accepting learning environment and a rigorous, high-quality, and personalized academic program. This requires engaging and challenging academic and co-curricular options, as well as comprehensive supports to help students achieve and thrive. Policymakers and educators share the responsibility of ensuring that these conditions exist in all schools through multiple measures of performance that inform the community of progress and drive continuous improvements in teaching and learning.
As the most significant in-school factors for student achievement, teachers and school leaders deserve the support and resources to maximize student learning outcomes and prepare our young people for the future. Policymakers must ensure that each student has access to effective educators by making the necessary investments along the career continuum, including incentives for recruiting and retaining candidates; personalized and ongoing professional development; flexible routes to licensure based on rigorous professional standards; leadership opportunities and development; and collaboration among higher education institutions and local districts.
CASCD members are active and involved in the changing face of education. Join CASCD and become empowered with innovative solutions to support the success of all learners. Sign up to become a member or renew your membership today!