We support programs and legislation that accomplish the below-listed endeavors.
Budget and Appropriations
NASDSE supports fully funding IDEA, which is congruent with Congress's intent to authorize the federal government to appropriate 40 percent of the excess costs of educating children with disabilities. Additionally, we advocate for increased investment in school infrastructure, both physical and systemic, and in funding across the education pre-K through post-secondary continuum to include educational supports and wraparound services.
Shortages and Personnel Preparation
NASDSE addresses teacher shortages and personnel preparation through promotion of initiatives and legislation which elevate the teaching profession, support the development and ongoing training of all teachers and leaders, advocate for programs which ensure all teachers have the ability to educate all students, bolster recruitment and retention of educators and school instructional support personnel (SISP), and increase the capacity of and future pipeline for educators, school leaders and SISPs.
The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) is first and foremost a civil rights law, meant to protect the right of students with disabilities to be educated in the nation’s public schools. NASDSE supports upholding these rights and protections, including the right to a free appropriate public education (FAPE) in the least restrictive environment (LRE). NASDSE believes the federal role is to assist in ensuring equitable access to educational opportunities, supplement and support local efforts, and protect students from discrimination. Additionally, NASDSE promotes its Principles for IDEA and lays the groundwork for reauthorization in the future, while continuing to oppose piecemeal amendments to the law. NASDSE also addresses issues related to implementation as they occur, such as Results-Driven Accountability (RDA) and disproportionality, while identifying and working to eliminate barriers to educating students with disabilities.
NASDSE supports legislation and regulations which uphold students' civil rights and protections under IDEA, including the right to receive a free appropriate public education (FAPE) in the least restrictive environment (LRE). We continue to advocate for the use of public funds by public schools. NASDSE also works to ensure schools receiving public funds are held accountable and promote transparency, access, and services and supports for students with disabilities, as mandated by the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) and requirements for equitable services
Medicaid in Public Schools
NASDSE works to ensure no detrimental changes are made to the funding or structure of the Medicaid program that would have adverse effects on the nation's public schools. Moreover, we continue to safeguard the sustainability of this funding stream and protect the spirit and intent of its use in providing services for students with disabilities.
All students, regardless of legal status, have the right to be educated and receive supports and services in the nation’s schools, in accordance with the IDEA. NASDSE supports this tenet and strongly upholds the right that students, their families, and school personnel must be safe from immigration raids on school property.
NASDSE is responsive to regulations, guidance, and other initiatives affecting the implementation of the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). Moreover, we endeavor to more closely align ESSA and IDEA to ensure they work in tandem to serve students with disabilities.
Virtual Schools/Online Learning
IDEA applies to virtual and online learning. NASDSE works to address issues regarding students with disabilities and online learning, including but not limited to lack of services, licensure of instructors, physical access, accountability, rigorous instruction, and LRE. Additionally, NASDSE has concerns with the overreliance in rural areas on virtual services, which is symptomatic of shortages.
Implementation of WIOA
NASDSE is opposed to the promotion of segregated settings and works to protect the ability of students with disabilities to access competitive integrated employment. Additionally, we support the elimination of 14(c) certificates and other barriers to successful employment outcomes. NASDSE continues to seek opportunities to connect education entities to vocational rehabilitation as WIOA implementation moves forward.
This section under construction. More to follow.