ISSUE: Rep. Duncan Hunter (R-52nd Calif.) has introduced H.R. 1891, which would repeal 43 education programs under the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA), including the Elementary and Secondary School Counseling Program (ESSCP), a federally funded, competitive grant program.
This bill is not deciding whether or not to fund the small competitive grant program; it would be to repeal the various 43 programs, removing them from the appropriations debate altogether. Essentially, the programs would be removed from federal law with the impossibility to ever be funded again without a congressional measure to reinstate them. This bill would remove the definition of "school counselor" in federal law, as the only place it appears is within ESSCP. Read Hunter's press release or view a detailed summary and list of programs that would be affected.
ACTION NEEDED: We are asking you to call or e-mail your House and Senate members today with the following message:
"As a constituent of Representative/Senator ___________, I am calling/writing because I strongly oppose H.R. 1891. I would like to request you, as my elected official, refuse to pass this bill, which would eliminate vital programs affecting student success. Programs such as the Elementary and Secondary School Counseling Program are not duplicative nor wasteful, as the bill implies, and are necessary for our students especially in time of economic hardship. The elimination of this program will have a negative impact on our students.
Steps for Reaching Members of Congress: If you don't know who your members of Congress are, go to http://www.contactingthecongress.org/, enter your ZIP code, and the names of your elected representatives with phone numbers and hyperlinks will appear.
If you know your members of Congress you can call the Capitol switchboard at (202) 225-3121 and ask for your member's office. When you call, make sure to give your name and identify yourself as a constituent; you may need to give your home address (city/town). If you are unable to get through via phone, please go to your member's Web site (which can be found at http://www.contactingthecongress.org/) and opt to send an e-mail. Be sure to let them know that you are an educator and these cuts will have a negative impact on your work and the education of children in his/her district. Personal stories are the most meaningful.
Please widely circulate this message and encourage all educators in your building to call/e-mail their elected officials. This is timely matter; please act today! If you have any questions or have difficulty finding your elected official please e-mail Amanda Fitzgerald.
Amanda Fitzgerald, Director of Public Policy