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Congress should appropriate the full levels of funding for ESSA Title II and Title IV.
The Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) passed the House and Senate overwhelmingly and was signed into law in December 2015. This new incarnation of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (the previous version of which was No Child Left Behind) sets some national programs for education and dictates what states are allowed to do with the money they receive from the Department of Education.
Two portions of the bill are relevant to the physics community: Title II and Title IV. Title II concerns teacher preparation and allows states to put money towards "teacher preparation academies" like PhysTEC and UTeach. These programs provide higher education instruction to develop high school physics teachers. Title IV allows states to fund after school and informal STEM-related programs.
Take action to get ESSA funded. You can email, tweet, and/or call your lawmaker.
Insert your lawmaker's Twitter handle in the sample tweets below. The "." at the beginning makes it more public. Find your elected officials by clicking the button the the left. If you know who your officials are, view Congress on Twitter.
.@[twitter_handle] Fully funding ESSA Titles II & IV will allow states to create high quality STEM programs & teachers. #voice4physics
.@[twitter_handle] High quality STEM education = crucial for next-gen STEM workforce to get necessary skills+knowledge #voice4physics
.@senatordoe Fully funding ESSA Titles II & IV will allow states to create high quality STEM programs & teachers. #voice4physics
Staffer: Hello, _________'s office.
You: Hi. My name is ____ and I live in ______. I'd like to speak with someone in the office about STEM education.
Staffer: (May or may not ask you for your address at this time to confirm you are a constituent) Sure, let me see if that person is available. --Pause-- I’m sorry, that person isn't available now. Can I take a message?
Yes. I’m calling about the Every Student Succeeds Act. I would like [elected official's name] to make sure that Titles II and IV are fully funded in FY17 and FY18 appropriations. These Titles allow for states to develop high-quality physics teachers and STEM-related after school and informal programs. [Insert details of your personal story here if you wish.]
Staffer: Thank you, I’ll relay your message to [your elected official]. (If he/she hadn’t asked before, he/she will ask you for your address to confirm that you are a constituent.)
You: Thank you.