Federal Advocacy Center


MABE’s Federal Advocacy Programs & Services

MABE’s Federal Relations Network (FRN) Committee meets throughout the year to discuss pending issues and coordinate meetings on Capitol Hill. The committee is comprised of board members appointed to represent the association in advocating the positions of MABE and the National School Boards Association (NSBA) to Maryland’s federal delegation, including our two U.S. Senators and eight members of the U.S. House of Representatives. In addition, MABE representatives attend the annual NSBA Advocacy Institute (formerly FRN Conference) in Washington D.C. and participate in the “Day on the Hill” congressional office visits.

MABE encourages all boards of education to participate in MABE’s FRN committee and NSBA’s Advocacy Institute to engage in advocacy at the federal level. Only through these continuous efforts can we ensure that our federal officials are well informed on the priorities and perspectives of local boards of education and the fiscal and policy issues arising under the myriad federal programs impacting public education.

2019 Advocacy Institute – The 2019 Advocacy Institute will be held from January 27-29, 2019 at the Washington Hilton Hotel.  Check out the Agenda and contact MABE for information on how to participate in FRN and the Advocacy Institute.

Priority Issue – Reauthorization of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) 

For additional information, contact John Woolums, MABE’s Director of Governmental Relations at (410) 841-5414 or jwoolums@mabe.org.

Federal News & Highlights

NSBA’s Federal Advocacy & Public Policy Updates 

      Federal Advocacy & Public Policy UpdateJanuary 7, 2019

Weekly Update –  December 7, 2018

(Congressional News, and U.S. Department of Education News)

  • Partial Government Shutdown Continues but Will Not Impact the U.S. Department of Education
    “The 116th Congress convened last week and the House immediately turned attention to approving an appropriations bill designed to end the partial government shutdown, triggered by the White House’s budget request for $5 billion to expand the southern border wall. The House measure, approved Thursday evening, did not include funding for wall. The House vote shifts the budget debate back to the Senate where Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) has stated that he will not bring any Fiscal Year 2019 legislation to the Senate floor that does not have the President’s support,” (NSBA).
  • This partial closure will not impact the U.S. Department of Education, but will likely impact the release of the Administration’s FY2020 budget request to Congress, which typically occurs the first Monday in February. NSBA will provide updates as negotiations continue.
  • E-Rate Implementation Will Continue During Partial Government Shut Down
    The E-Rate program provides almost $4 billion annually in subsidies to school districts and libraries to facilitate affordable telecommunications services and Internet access. NSBA recommends that participating schools and districts continue regular communications with the Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC), as needed.
  • U.S. Department of Agriculture Approves Child Nutrition Regulation Changes
    The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) published a final rule this week to provide schools with relief
    from the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act requirements related to milk, whole grains, and sodium. The
    new regulations will take effect on July 1, 2019.
  • White House Releases STEM Education Report
    The Committee on STEM Education of the White House National Science & Technology Council
    published a report titled “Chartering a Course for Success: America’s Strategy for STEM Education.” The
    Committee includes representatives from the National Science Foundation, the U.S. Department of
    Education, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), U.S. Department of Defense and
    other agencies.

The Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA)

The Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) in Maryland

State Resources – Maryland State Department of Education (MSDE) 

State Board Approves Accountability Report Cards 

   On Dec. 4, 2018 the Maryland State Board of Education released the approved format, contents, and online accessibility to the new Maryland Report Card accountability reporting system under the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA).

State Board Approved ESSA Accountability Plan

U.S. Dept. of Education Resources – Maryland’s State Plan Review and Approval 

MABE Presentation: From NCLB to ESSA… An Introduction to the Every Child Succeeds Act

  • The passage of the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), signed by President Obama on December 10, 2015, represents a comprehensive revision of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA), which since 2002 has been known as the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB). MABE and the National School Boards Association (NSBA) agree that ESSA provides a historic opportunity for school boards across the country to help shape how this law will impact their schools, teachers and students. Unlike NCLB, ESSA reduces the specificity of federal requirements while increasing the ability of States and school systems to define how school boards and individual schools are held accountable for student achievement. With the passage of this law, the U.S. Department of Education (USDE) and States are now embarking on the work to implement its provisions.

For more information, please see the Every  Student Succeeds Act section in our Priority Issues for the 2018 legislative session.