Category Archives: Federal Issue

State Submits Plan to Comply with Federal ESSA Education Law

Perhaps overshadowed by all the focus this week on the 2017-19 state budget was the submission by the Department of Public Instruction (DPI) of Wisconsin’s Consolidated State Plan under the federal Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA).  As required by federal law, Wisconsin submitted its plan to the U.S. Department of Education on the deadline date of last Monday (Sept. 18).

Continue reading State Submits Plan to Comply with Federal ESSA Education Law

Federal Appropriations Bill for Education Gains U.S. Senate Subcommittee Approval

Today (Sept. 6), the U.S. Senate Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education Appropriations Subcommittee unanimously approved a bipartisan FY2018 funding bill for the federal Departments of Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education, and related agencies, that is $3 billion above the FY2017 level and $27.5 billion above the President’s budget request.

The Senate subcommittee also rejected President Trump’s proposed cuts to teacher training and afterschool funding (see below).   Full Senate committee consideration of the funding measure is scheduled for Thursday.  The 2018 federal fiscal year begins on Oct. 1.

Here are capsule descriptions of some of the key funding provisions for K-12 education:

Continue reading Federal Appropriations Bill for Education Gains U.S. Senate Subcommittee Approval

US Senate Set to Try Again on Health Care Reform

U.S. Senate Republicans on Thursday (July 13) released a revised version of their bill to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act, otherwise known as Obamacare. The changes in the revised version are aimed at securing the votes of reluctant GOP senators in order to win the bill’s passage.

The new Senate bill, like earlier versions, would convert Medicaid from an open-ended entitlement to a system of fixed (capped) payments to states. The new bill makes no change to the indexing that would be used to adjust future federal Medicaid outlays, which under the Senate version would be pegged to the consumer price index (CPI-U) rather than measures tied to medical care costs, which historically  have risen faster than the CPI.

The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) has projected federal outlays for Medicaid under the Senate bill would decline by 26 percent by 2026 in comparison with projections under current law. (See previous post.)

Continue reading US Senate Set to Try Again on Health Care Reform

New Report Outlines Impact of Senate Health Care Reform Bill on Medicaid

A June 29 Congressional Budget Office report entitled Longer-Term Effects of the Better Care Reconciliation Act of 2017 on Medicaid Spending projects federal Medicaid spending under the Senate version of the health care reform bill would be 26 percent (or roughly $160 billion) lower in 2026 than under current law.  That gap would widen to about 35 percent in 2036. Continue reading New Report Outlines Impact of Senate Health Care Reform Bill on Medicaid

Final ESSA Plan Listening Session Held in Madison

The Department of Public Instruction (DPI) held the last of six scheduled listening sessions to gather public opinion on Wisconsin’s plan for implementing federal Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) on Tuesday, June 27.

Those who were unable to attend a listening session may submit formal comments through June 30 via the online comment form.

Letters of Support Requested for School-Based Medicaid Reimbursement

From NSBA: Urgent Request for Letters of Support and Local Examples re: School-Based Medicaid Reimbursement

The U.S. Senate is poised to make public its version of the health care reform bill that is being negotiated among a group of senior Senate Republicans as early as tomorrow (Thursday, June 22).

The WASB has noted in previous posts regarding similar House legislation to repeal the Affordable Care Act (a/k/a Obamacare), efforts to significantly curtail Medicaid spending as part of this legislation have triggered concerns about the impact such cuts would likely have on schools and how services for students with disabilities would be funded. Continue reading Letters of Support Requested for School-Based Medicaid Reimbursement

DPI Announces Listening Sessions on ESSA State Plan

The Department of Public Instruction (DPI) has announced a schedule of six listening sessions on Wisconsin’s proposed Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) state plan.

Here are the dates, times and locations of the upcoming listening sessions: Continue reading DPI Announces Listening Sessions on ESSA State Plan