Teach For America Endorses the Every Child Counts Act

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New York, March 10, 2015—Teach For America endorses the Every Child Counts Act, sponsored by Senator Chris Murphy (D-CT) and Senator Patty Murray (D-WA), because we believe that all students, including those with disabilities, should be held to high standards and supported in reaching their full potential.

“By endorsing this bill, Teach For America is standing by our long-term belief that every child should have an equal opportunity to attain an excellent education,” said Elisa Villanueva Beard, co-CEO of Teach For America.  “Congress should pass this bill to help ensure that students with disabilities have the opportunity to get the education and skills they need to be college and career ready, while students with the most significant cognitive disabilities receive alternative supports to succeed in and after high school.”

If passed into law, this legislation will help ensure that students who do not have the most significant cognitive disabilities are taking the standard assessmentswith reasonable accommodations if neededand on track to graduate with a diploma, and that those students with the most severe cognitive disabilities receive alternative assessments that are aligned with their post-secondary goals.  It also ensures that parents can make the best education decisions for their children by requiring states to establish and report on metrics of student growth for students with disabilities.

“Through Teach For America’s Diverse Learners Initiative, nearly 13% of Teach for America teachers are special educators,” said Matt Kramer, co-CEO of Teach For America.  “As we work to help strengthen and expand quality instruction for students in low-income communities who receive special education services, we urge Congress to pass this law so that every student receives the education they deserve and every parent has the information they need to help get them there.” 

About Teach For America
Teach For America works in partnership with communities to expand educational opportunity for children facing the challenges of poverty. Founded in 1990, Teach For America recruits and develops a diverse corps of outstanding college graduates and professionals to make an initial two-year commitment to teach in high-need schools and become lifelong leaders in the movement to end educational inequity. Today, 10,600 corps members are teaching in 50 urban and rural regions across the country while more than 37,000 alumni work across sectors to ensure that all children have access to an excellent education. For more information, visit www.teachforamerica.org and follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

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