Sending Office: Honorable Suzanne Bonamici
Support Rigorous, Relevant Education Research
Fund the Institute of Education Sciences
DEADLINE: March 14, 2018
Please join us in asking the Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education Appropriations Subcommittee to appropriate $670 million for the Institute of Education Sciences (IES).
IES is an independent group at the Department of Education that evaluates education policies and advances education research. Its programs produce evidence-based practices that strengthen teaching and learning and information that is used to measure the
effectiveness of educational reforms.
IES is comprised of four national centers: the National Center for Education Research, the National Center for Education Statistics, the National Center for Education Evaluation and Regional Assistance, and the National Center for Special Education Research.
The four centers support one another’s activities to establish an evidence base and also communicate research-based findings and resources to policymakers, school and district leaders, teachers, parents, and students.
Investing in high-quality education research and evaluation will give educators and policymakers the tools and information to continue to support achievement among all students by making investments in programs and interventions that demonstrate results.
If you would like to sign your boss on to this letter, please complete this
form. If you have any questions, please contact Lakeisha Steele (Lakeisha.Steele@mail.house.gov) in Rep. Bonamici’s office or Courtney Callejas (Courtney.Callejas@mail.house.gov)
in Rep. Huffman’s office.
Suzanne Bonamici Jared Huffman
Member of Congress Member of Congress
Dear Chairman Cole and Ranking Member DeLauro:
As you develop the Fiscal Year (FY) 2019 appropriations bill for the U.S. Departments of Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education, we respectfully encourage you to appropriate $670 million for the Institute of Education Sciences (IES). This funding
will also support the work of the National Center for Education Statistics, National Center for Special Education Research, and Regional Educational Laboratories.
IES is an independent branch of the Department of Education and it plays a critical role in developing the research base for and examining the effectiveness of education programs. IES is comprised of four national centers: the National Center for Education
Research, the National Center for Education Statistics, the National Center for Education Evaluation and Regional Assistance, and the National Center for Special Education Research. The four centers support one another’s activities to establish an evidence
base and also communicate research-based findings and resources to policymakers, school and district leaders, teachers, parents, and students. As the nonpartisan agency for education research and data and the evaluator of federal education policies, IES helps
make sure that taxpayers’ money is being invested in efforts that are supported by rigorous research and demonstrated results. Local, state, and federal governments invest billions of dollars on public education each year and we depend on the evidence base
to inform the best decisions for these dollars.
With IES support and leadership, the field of education continues to evolve with new methodologies and findings as well as increased engagement with and dissemination to state and local decision makers. And yet, the budget has remained flat – and some programs
are functioning at funding levels lower than in years past. This means that many pressing questions about education remain unanswered, such as what we can do to prevent school shootings and how to best serve conventional students and create pathways for good-paying
technical jobs that do not require a four year degree. Additional funding for Research, Development and Dissemination would enable further work in these areas. Although IES research has several studies on the higher education in the works, there is a lot
that students and families still can’t know without additional investment in the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES). NCES research can help inform students and families about education outcomes, including enrollment, completion, and post-college
success. This research would have the added benefit of increasing transparency at our higher education institutions.
Despite a budget that is only two-thirds of what it was in 2005, research from the National Center for Special Education Research helps inform educators and families of evidence-based interventions and strategies that support the development and academic
success of children with disabilities, which includes strategies for improving early childhood special education; advancing reading, writing, and language development; educating students on the autism spectrum; and helping students transition to post-secondary
education and careers.
The Regional Educational Laboratories (RELs) are making important progress on a wide range of education issues facing states. Recent highlights include identifying charter schools that, based on the demographics and social economic levels of students, were
performing better than expected in both math and English. Continuation of this work, funding permitting, could further examine the common factors of the schools beating the odds and how to replicate those programs. In addition, RELs have developed expenditure
to performance ratios using existing data to better understand the relationship between the level of investment per student and student performance – an essential question to those responsible for spending tax payer dollars on education. Other RELs have made
strides to supporting success for rural students examining what affects the likelihood of their postsecondary success.
Thank you for your attention to our request to appropriate $670 million for IES. Our education system will be stronger in the future if we provide meaningful, sustained support for rigorous education research and evaluation today.
e-Dear Colleague version 2.0