Washington Wrap Up – Oct 27, 2020

Below is an abridged version of RAMC’s weekly Washington Wrap Up. Find out more about Wrap Up and other RAMC resources here.

October 27, 2020

A version of the “skinny” Senate GOP COVID-19 relief bill (S.178failed to advance last week.

The Senate Judiciary Committee voted to advance the nomination of Judge Amy Coney Barrett. The Senate voted on the nomination and confirmed her nomination on Monday, October 26.

House Education and Labor Committee Chairman Bobby Scott (D-VA) issued subpoenas to three U.S. Department of Education (ED) officials as part of an investigation into the Dream Center.

ED released a report on institutional compliance with Section 117 of the Higher Education Act, in which the Department documents $6.5 billion in unreported gifts from various countries.

ED announced it is no longer recognizing a 2016 handbook that provided guidance to IHEs on reporting campus crime data under the Clery Act and is replacing the guidance with a 13-page supplement to the Federal Student Aid (FSA) handbook.

U.S. Immigrations and Customs Enforcement (ICE) announced it has arrested fifteen postsecondary students that, according to ICE, were fraudulently participating in the Optional Practical Training (OPT) program.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released updated guidance regarding the definition of a “close contact” for the purposes of COVID-19 contact tracing.

Education News Headlines
[Click on the link to read the article online]
New Dashboard Tracks FAFSA Completion Rates [Inside Higher Ed]

Few free college programs cover living expenses and include adult students: report [Education Dive]

Pandemic-related tuition freezes help slow average college sticker price increases to lowest rates in decades [Inside Higher Ed]

Colleges Slash Budgets in the Pandemic, With ‘Nothing Off-Limits’ [The New York Times]

Colleges with high case counts show no signs of shutting down [Inside Higher Ed]

Colleges Turn To Wastewater Testing In An Effort To Flush Out The Coronavirus [NPR]

A new Education Department spirit under Biden? [Inside Higher Ed]

How career and technical education shuts out Black and Latino students [The Hechinger Report]

Federal judge rejects ACLU-backed lawsuit against Title IX rule [Education Dive]

A guide to higher education coronavirus relief funding [Education Dive]

FAFSA Applications Are Open. Here’s How To Fill It Out This Year [NPR]

Judge rejects settlement over stalled student debt relief claims, blames DeVos for harming borrowers [The Washington Post]

Colleges sue over new rules on eligibility, wages for H-1B visa holders [Inside Higher Ed]

College promise programs may help enrollment, report finds. Will they help now? [Inside Higher Ed]

California Community Colleges receive $100 million donation to help students facing financial hardships [EdSource]

Colleges look to OPMs as pandemic intensifies shift online [Education Dive]

Are The Risks Of Reopening Schools Exaggerated? [NPR]

After the Pandemic, a Revolution in Education and Work Awaits [The New York Times]

Committee News and Schedule, Schedule for House and Senate Floor:
Speaker of the House
Press Release: Transcript of Pelosi Interview on CNN’s State of the Union with Jake Tapper

Senate Majority Leader
Press Release: McConnell on ‘Fox News at Night with Shannon Bream’

House Committee on Education and Labor
Press Release:  Foxx Reacts to Report on Foreign Influence on U.S. Higher Education

Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor & Pensions
Press Release: Murray, Democratic Colleagues Urge DeVos to Help 8.2 Million Federal Student Loan Borrowers Currently Unable to Access Relief

Senate Committee on Appropriations 
Press Release: Shelby: Senate Democrats Continue to Block COVID Relief for Struggling American Families

Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Crisis 
Press Release: At Briefing, CDC Official Acknowledges School Guidance Fails To Capture Accurate Science On Coronavirus Risks To Children

U.S. Department of Education and the Administration:
White House Press Release: Senate Confirms Amy Coney Barrett for Supreme Court

ED Press Release: U.S. Department of Education Announces Additional Funding For Earn-and-Learn Opportunities to Prepare Postsecondary Students for Career Success

DOL Press Release: U.S. Department of Labor Publishes Request For Information To Combat Race And Sex Stereotyping

IES Report: Continuous Improvement in Education: A Toolkit for Schools and Districts

Legislative Movement in Congress Last Week:
S.4865 — A bill to improve the full-service community school program, and for other purposes.
Sponsor: Sen. Brown, Sherrod [D-OH] (Introduced 10/26/2020) Cosponsors: (2)
Committees: Senate – Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions
Latest Action:  Senate – 10/26/2020 Read twice and referred to the Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions.
Press Release: Brown, Gillibrand, Van Hollen Introduce Legislation To Expand Community Schools, Support Students, Families & Communities

S.4873 — A bill to authorize the Minority Business Development Agency of the Department of Commerce to establish business centers at historically Black colleges and universities, and for other purposes.
Sponsor: Sen. Wicker, Roger F. [R-MS] (Introduced 10/26/2020) Cosponsors: (4)
Committees: Senate – Commerce, Science, and Transportation
Latest Action:  Senate – 10/26/2020 Read twice and referred to the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation.
Press Release: Wicker, Kaine, Colleagues Introduce Legislation to Expand Minority Business Support to Rural Areas

H.R.8664 — To provide funds to local educational agencies for personal protective equipment for educators and other staff, and students.
Sponsor: Rep. Garcia, Jesus G. “Chuy” [D-IL-4] (Introduced 10/23/2020) Cosponsors: (39)
Committees: House – Education and Labor
Latest Action:  House – 10/23/2020 Referred to the House Committee on Education and Labor.
Press Release: Reps. García (IL), Garcia (TX), Watson Coleman, Mfume Introduce Legislation to Help Keep Schools Safe during the COVID-19 Pandemic

S.4824 — A bill to amend the Public Health Service Act to expand the capacity of the suicide prevention lifeline and mental health crisis centers.
Sponsor: Sen. Cornyn, John [R-TX] (Introduced 10/21/2020) Cosponsors: (3)
Committees: Senate – Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions
Latest Action:  Senate – 10/21/2020 Read twice and referred to the Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions.
Press Release: Cornyn, Bennet, Colleagues Introduce Bill to Nearly Triple Suicide Prevention Funding

H.R.8634 — To improve United States cybersecurity through STEM scholarships, prize competitions, and other STEM activities, and for other purposes.
Sponsor: Rep. Horn, Kendra S. [D-OK-5] (Introduced 10/20/2020) Cosponsors: (0)
Committees: House – Education and Labor; Science, Space, and Technology
Latest Action:  House – 10/20/2020 Referred to the Committee on Science, Space, and Technology, and in addition to the Committee on Education and Labor, for a period to be subsequently determined by the Speaker, in each case for consideration of such provisions as fall within the jurisdiction of the…

H.Res.1198 — Calling on States to implement “ban the box” legislation.
Sponsor: Rep. Rush, Bobby L. [D-IL-1] (Introduced 10/20/2020) Cosponsors: (0)
Committees: House – Education and Labor
Latest Action:  House – 10/20/2020 Referred to the House Committee on Education and Labor.
Press Release: Rush Introduces Legislation Calling on States To “Ban the Box”

Federal Education Training and Grant Opportunities, Notices:
ED Comment Request: Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) Regulatory Requirements.Comments on or before December 28, 2020. 

ED Comment Request: PLUS Adverse Credit Reconsideration Loan Counseling. Comments due on or before November 25, 2020. 

ED Grant Notice; Correction: Centers of Excellence for Veteran Student Success Program. This notice corrects the deadline for intergovernmental review. All other information in the NIA, including the November 4, 2020, deadline for transmittal of applications, remains the same.

ED Meeting Notice: President’s Advisory Commission on Hispanic Prosperity. The meeting of the Commission will be held on Wednesday, October 28, 2020, from 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. Eastern Standard at Alpha and Omega Church Cristiana de Miami, 7800 Miller Dr., Miami, FL 33155.