Last week, House Education and Workforce Committee Republicans unveiled a sweeping proposal to reauthorize the Higher Education Act (HEA). We applaud the Committee for prioritizing the long overdue reauthorization of the HEA and introducing this proposal to begin a critical discussion.
However, New Leaders has a variety of serious concerns – including the proposal to eliminate Title II of the HEA, which, among other things, authorizes the Teacher Quality Partnership (TQP) grant program intended to enhance the quality of teacher and school leader preparation programs across the country. The need for outstanding educators – individuals capable of teaching and leading students to master essential knowledge and build the skills to apply that knowledge wherever their studies and aspirations take them – has never been greater. We believe the TQP program should be strengthened, not scrapped, to support the next generation of great teachers and school leaders.
In addition to eliminating programs authorized within Title II, the proposal would also eliminate the Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) program for new borrowers, a program designed to encourage Americans across the country to pursue public sector careers, including as teachers, school leaders, and other educators. Our students need school leaders capable of delivering breakthrough results, and PSLF helps attract and retain outstanding talent for our nation’s public schools, especially those serving the most vulnerable students and the communities in need of strong, sustained leadership.
We strongly encourage the Committee to reconsider the elimination of such critical programs, and we look forward to working with Congress to ensure that any bipartisan reauthorization of the HEA can help support great teaching, improve student outcomes, and close achievement gaps by promoting a critical goal: getting a well-prepared, well-supported principal in every school.