Federal Relations

Senate Holds Hearing on Department of Ed FY12 Budget

The Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies held a hearing yesterday on the Department of Education’s FY12 budget. Secretary Duncan was the witness. In his opening remarks, Duncan expressed concern that America has gone from being a world leader in education to now being “middle of the pack”.  He

NSF & USAID Launch PEER

The National Science Foundation(NSF) and the United States Agency for International Development(USAID) launched a new collaborative program called PEER (Partnership for Enhanced Engagement and Research) last week. PEER is a new international, interagency joint initiative which will address environmental challenges that affect both the United States and the developing world by reinforcing existing relationships and

ED Launches New Round of Promise Neighborhood Grants

On July 6, the Department released the application for the next phase of the Promise Neighborhoods program, including a second round of planning grants and new implementation grants, totaling $30 million.  Institutions of higher education are eligible to apply for funds to develop or execute plans that will improve educational and developmental outcomes for students

Patent Reform Bill Remains Stalled in Senate

The Senate has been unable to quickly vote on the House-passed version of Patent Reform, and it now looks increasingly likely that votes will have to be allowed on a couple of controversial amendments to the bill which could cause further problems. One of the House adopted amendments would recalculate the filing period for patent term extension

SBIR Extension Signed by President

The President signed a bill late last week that will extend the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program until September 30, 2011. The previous extension was set to expire on the 31st of May. There is no increase to the set-aside at this time which will remain at 2.5% for research agencies with R&D budgets greater than $100

FY11 FIPSE Grants Cancelled

The Department of Education has cancelled their FY11 FIPSE grant process due to lack of funds.  The following explanation is posted on the Department’s website: “Congressional action on the FY 2011 budget substantially reduced funds available for grants from the Fund for the Improvement of Postsecondary Education, including new grants under the Comprehensive Program. Therefore, no

DREAM Act Reintroduced

Senate Democrats plan to reintroduce the DREAM Act.  Just like the previous versions over the past several years, this year’s version will likely authorize the Secretary of Homeland Security (DHS) to cancel the removal of, and adjust to conditional nonimmigrant status, an alien who: (1) entered the United States before his or her 16th birthday and

SBIR Reauthorization Makes Progress in House, Hits Roadblock in Senate

The Senate convened this morning to vote on a motion to invoke cloture that aimed to limit further debate on the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) bill (S493) and its reauthorization through 2019, but failed to meet the required minimum of 60 votes. There was increased controversy arising from the bill, as amendments attached to

Administration Focuses on Strategies to Increase College Graduation Rates

In late March, America’s Promise Alliance–founded by former Secretary of State General Colin Powell, held a three day “Building a Grad Nation” summit in Washington, DC. The purpose was to inspire a movement to reach a goal of a 90 percent national college graduation rate by 2020 and place the US in the lead for the highest

Department of Education FY12 Budget Summary

The Department of Education has released the following summary of the President’s FY12 budget request for the agency: U.S. Department of Education Information Release 2/14/11 Deep cuts and efficiencies in several key education programs will help fund new education investments to keep American students competitive in the global economy under the proposed 2012 Obama administration

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