[snca-list] Support needed for Well Rounded Education amendment
elawrimore32 at gmail.com
Tue Oct 18 11:25:13 EDT 2011
Below is a message from the National Coalition for History. In a nutshell,
there is currently the opportunity for an amendment to the No Child Left
Behind bill that would include a grant program to improve the teaching of
history on the secondary school level.
A North Carolina Senator, Kay Hagan, is on the Senate Health, Education,
Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee. If you want to show your support for
this important change, *please call or email her today*! Her number is *
202-224-6342 <202-224-3643>* and emails can be sent from her Senate webpage
(http://hagan.senate.gov/?p=contact). The vote is tomorrow morning. There is
a script highlighted below.
Please help elevate history education in the Senate reauthorization of No
Child Left Behind!
Earlier this week, Senate Health, Education, Labor & Pensions (HELP)
Committee Chairman Harkin (D-Iowa) released his draft re-write of No Child
Left Behind. Despite some opposition, we expect it to be voted on in the
HELP Committee on Wednesday, October 19th.
At that markup, Senator Casey (D-PA) will offer an amendment on a "well
rounded education." While we have not yet seen the exact language, we
understand that the Well-Rounded education amendment will create a new grant
program to improve the teaching of subjects other than reading and math. The
aim is to encourage high-quality instruction in subjects that have been
pushed to the fringe by heavy testing in math and reading, such as history.
The amendment will create a mechanism to award grants to education agencies
or non-profits to provide professional development and curriculum
development in these subjects. Preference will go to organizations serving
We apologize for making such a last-minute appeal. But the situation with
the bill at this stage is fluid, and we did not learn about the possibility
of the Casey amendment until late last evening.
It is unclear whether there are enough votes to pass the amendment, so HELP
Committee members need to hear from the historical community and be
encouraged to vote YES on the Casey Well-Rounded Education Amendment.
The following members sit on the HELP Committee and have not yet announced
that they are voting against the bill. If you are from one of these states,
it is URGENT that you phone AS EARLY AS POSSIBLE TUESDAY with the message
*What your organization needs to do this morning:*
1. Send an e-mail blast to your membership urging them to call Sens.
Harkin and Enzi since they are the key players. The canned script is below.
2. A list of Senate HELP Committee members is also included below and
should be sent with your blast email.
3. Stress that your members need to call, not e-mail, the Senators and
it must be done TODAY since the bill is expected to be taken up on
You can call the Senate switchboard at 202-224-3121 and ask to be
transferred to your Senator's office, or you can call directly. If you know
the name of the staffer who works on education policy, you can send an email
or call and ask to leave a message for that person. If you don't know the
staffer's name, phone the appropriate number below and ask if you can leave
a voice mail message for the person who handles the ESEA reauthorization for
Alaska - Senator Murkowski - 202-224-6665
Colorado - Senator Bennett - 202-224-5852
Connecticut - Senator Blumenthal - 202-224-2823
Georgia - Senator Isakson - 202-224-3643
Illinois - Senator Kirk - 202-224-2854
* Iowa - Chairman Harkin - 202-224-3254
Kansas - Senator Roberts - 202-224-4774
Maryland - Senator Mikulski - 202-224-4654
Minnesota - Senator Franken - 202-224-5641
New Mexico - Senator Bingaman - 202-224-5521
North Carolina - Senator Hagan - 202-224-6342
Oregon - Senator Merkely - 202-224-3753
Pennsylvania - Senator Casey -202-224-6324 DON'T USE TALKING POINTS BELOW;
JUST CALL AND SAY THANK YOU!
Rhode Island - Senator Whitehouse - 202-224-2921
Tennessee - Senator Alexander - 202-224-4944
Utah - Senator Hatch - 202-224-5251
Vermont - Senator Sanders - 202-224-5141
Washington - Senator Murray - 202-224-2621
* Wyoming - Ranking Member Senator Enzi - 202-224-3424
My name is _____ and I am calling from (place name in state). I am
calling to urge the Senator to vote YES on Senator Casey’s Well Rounded
One of the problems with No Child Left Behind is that it focused too
narrowly on English and math. As social studies were squeezed out of the
curriculum, students missed out on the vital information and critical
thinking skills taught in history, civics, geography and economics. This
information, and these critical thinking skills, are vital to citizens in a
democracy and adult success in the workplace.
I thank Chairman Harkin for including competitive grants for innovative
approaches to civic education in the programs of national significance. I
hope Senator (fill in name of office you are calling) will support inclusion
of the social studies in the bill by voting YES on the Well Rounded
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