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$1.2 Trillion bipartisan infrastructure bill clears U.S. House, heads to President’s desk

The U.S. House of Representatives voted 228-206 on Friday to pass a $1.2 trillion bipartisan infrastructure bill, which now heads to President Biden, who has indicated he will sign the bill into law “soon.”

Thirteen 13 Republican House members and all but six House Democrats voted in favor of passage of the bill.  The U.S. Senate had passed the bill by a 69-30 margin back in August. (more…)

WASB leader John Ashley calls for civility

Wisconsin Association of School Boards Executive Director John Ashley released the following statement:

We’ve become increasingly alarmed at the recent reports of personal threats of violence and harassment directed at school board members across the state.

Civil disagreement and protest are cornerstones of our democracy but attempts to intimidate school board members and physically disrupt school board proceedings are not acceptable. (more…)

U.S. Dept. of Education releases “Return to School Roadmap” resources

Yesterday (8/1), the U.S. Department of Education (Department) released a “Return to School Roadmap,” a resource to support students, schools, educators, and communities as they prepare to return to safe, healthy in-person learning this fall. The Roadmap provides key resources and supports for students, parents, educators, and school communities. 

The Roadmap includes three “landmark” priorities that schools, districts, and communities are encouraged to focus on to ensure all students are set up for success in the 2021-2022 school year. (more…)

CDC updates guidance again, now recommends universal masking in schools

alt = " "The federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) today (7/27) changed course on the question of indoor masking for the fully vaccinated. 

It now says all students, staff and teachers should wear masks in K-12 schools regardless of their vaccination status.

The new CDC guidance aligns with updated guidance issued by the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) on July 19. (more…)

GOP lawmakers target public schools with “transparency/culture war” legislation

GOP lawmakers target public schools with “transparency/culture war” legislation

A number of legislative proposals have been introduced that target public schools (including independent charter schools) with measures aimed at increasing transparency to parents and the community. It’s possible these bills could have public hearings in the near future and we wanted to make you aware of them. The WASB is concerned with the trend of these types of bills that indicate a lack of trust by lawmakers in locally-elected school board members and local control of K-12 education in general.

The following is a list of bills dealing with school referenda, budget transparency, anti-racism & anti-sexism instruction (critical race theory) and a mandate to post curricular and instructional materials online.  Along with a description of each bill is an excerpt from the bill’s co-sponsorship memo. These memos are written by the bill authors to explain the need for the legislation to their colleagues and request their support. (more…)