Here is a call to action from National Association for Gifted Children
For the web version, go to:
TO DO TODAY
Contact your Senators before April 24. Use the Senate online email form.
Share information about the federal stimulus funds with other advocates and local school decisionmakers.
The website has RESOURCES
-Senate “Dear Colleague” lettersupporting at least $11.25 million for the Javits program
Javits program description
-Memo on using federal stimulus funds to support gifted students
-NAGC Legislative Update page
Action Needed before April 24
Contact Your Senators to Support Funding for the Javits Program in Fiscal Year 2010
Gifted education advocates have depended on Congressional supporters to fund the Javits Gifted and Talented Students Education Act (Javits) for the past 20 years, whether or not the President includes funding for the program in his annual budget request to the Congress.
We need your help in the U.S. Senate, where a “dear colleague” letter, originated by Senators Chris Dodd (CT) and Charles Grassley (Iowa), is circulating requesting the Senate appropriations committee to support gifted students by providing at least $11.25 million for the Javits program in 2010. The more co-signers we secure on the letter, the more support and thus, the stronger the message we send to the appropriators. A copy of the letter has been posted on the NAGC Legislative Update page.
The $11.25 million funding level restores the Javits program to its 2002 level, before the program suffered across-the-board cuts, to its current $7.5 million level. If America is to remain globally competitive, it is critical to invest in the Javits program, which helps schools understand and meet the unique educational needs of gifted students, including those from disadvantaged backgrounds. $11.25 million is sufficient to fund all three components of the Javits program: the National Research Center on the Gifted and Talented (NRC/GT), demonstration grants that help to develop best practices in identifying and serving the entire range of gifted learners, and grants to states to support statewide initiates that help build a foundation for support.
Please contact your U.S. Senators before April 24 and urge them to co-sign the Dodd-Grassley letter requesting at least $11.25 million in 2010 for the Javits gifted education program. Senate offices have online email forms. Use “co-sign appropriations dear colleague” if you are able to type in a subject line; select “appropriations” if there is a pull-down menu.
If you have examples of how your school district or state has benefitted from the Javits program (e.g., that your school relied on NRC/GT research results to develop or expand its gifted education services; that your state previously received a Javits grant), include that information.
Last Month's Efforts Yield Success
Thanks to advocates across the country, 50 U.S. Representatives co-signed a similar letter last month for at least $11.25 million for the Javits program. A full list of co-signers, coordinated by Representatives Jim Matheson (UT-2) and Elton Gallegly (CA-24) is available on the NAGC Legislative Update page.
Use Federal Stimulus Funds for Gifted Education
Gifted education supporters should be advocating with their local school district leaders to spend a portion of the federal education stimulus money to support gifted and talented programs and services. The funds are just starting to flow to states and districts, so now is the time to be asking questions about how your school district is planning to spend the money. NAGC has prepared a memo with more information to help support your advocacy efforts; it's posted in the Legislative Update section of the website.
For those of you who want to know more about all the education stimulus funds, the U.S. Department of Education has posted several excellent guides, in Q&A format, portions of which might be helpful to share with other advocates or with school leaders. Visit the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) area on the Department’s website.
We look forward to working with you, please don’t hesitate to contact us with your ideas and suggestions.
Jane Clarenbach & Carolyn Kaye
National Association for Gifted Children
1707 L Street, N.W. Suite 550
Washington, DC 20036
Tel: (202) 785-4268
Fax: (202) 785-4248