ERIC Number: ED457541
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2001-Apr-13
Reference Count: N/A
Continuity or Radical Departure? A Policy Analysis of the ESEA Reauthorization Process in the 106th Congress.
DeBray, Elizabeth H.
Between October 1999 and May 2000, Congress considered the reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) of 1965. This report examines the proposals for changes in the act and underlying political factors. Research methods consisted of interviews and gathering of documents. Staff of both parties and both houses, at committee and subcommittee level, were interviewed. The legislation was affected by changes in ideology, institutional instability among interest groups, and the high degree to which members of Congress and their staffs were closed to outside interests. Due to changes in membership, partisanship increased. Republicans wanted block grants and voucher-like choice. Democrats wanted to preserve a program that already targeted the most needy students. Increased partisanship led to policy formation with outside access limited to a few coalitions and groups. In the past, practitioners' groups and a wide variety of interest groups were consulted. However, conservative groups such as the EXPECT coalition, with a suburban membership base, often gained the most access to Congress. At Congressional hearings the groups invited were largely governors and groups making the case for states' prerogatives. Two approved provisions with the greatest chance to alter the structure of the Title I program were related to portability (let the money follow the child) and flexibility (let some federal requirements be waived), both Republican preferences. The basic structures of the act that were set in place in 1994 remained, but the support for Title I and for categorical programs, in general, has diminished. A related concern is that university-based research in education was largely ignored. (Contains 24 references.) (RKJ/AUTHOR)
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Laws, Policies, & Programs: Elementary and Secondary Education Act Title I