As some of those who read these entries (all 2-3 of you) know, I have a professional life that is entwined with issues in educating students with disabilities (see the links under “other sites”), so it will come as little suprise that I am concerned about the politics of special education. Having recently noted that there are bills in the US Congress supporting full funding of the Individuals with Disabilities Act, I now get to ask the local political question.
Where are Virginia’s congressional representatives on funding of IDEA? Three of Virginia’s eleven representatives have signed as co-sponsors of one of the four pending bills. Hooray for Representatives Scott, Moran, and Boucher. Here are the results of my research.
There are at least four bills before the House and these are the number of representatives who are co-sponsoring each, including the names of Virginia representatives (and links to their Web sites):
- 0 of 55 for H.R. 526: Full Funding for IDEA Now Act; a bill to amend the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act to provide full funding for assistance for education of all children with disabilities.
- 2 of 64 for H.R.627: Keep Our PACT Act, a bill to require full funding of the Elementary and
Secondary Education Act of 1965 and the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act. Boucher, Rick; Virginia, 9th and Scott, Robert C.; Virginia, 3rd
- 1 of 48 for H.R.684: Keeping Our Promises to America’s Children Act, a bill to require full funding of part A of title I of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965, as amended by the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001. Moran, James P.; Virginia, 8th
- 0 of 48 for H.R.821: Everyone Deserves Unconditional Access to Education Act, a bill to amend part B of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act to provide full funding for special education.
Here are the identities (and links to the Web sites, where available) of those Virginia representatives who have not co-sponsored legislation supporting education of students with disabilities. I’m writing to mine.
- Davis, Jo Ann; Virginia, 1st
- Drake, Thelma D.; Virginia, 2nd
- Forbes, J. Randy; Virginia, 4th
- Goode, Virgil H.; Virginia, 5th
- Goodlatte, Bob; Virginia, 6th
- Cantor, Eric; Virginia, 7th
- Wolf, Frank R.; Virginia, 10th
- Davis, Tom; Virginia, 11th
If you’re not from Virginia but you want to know how to contact your representative to express your concern about this (or any other) matter, here’s a link to the House’s form that lets you send a message. I hope folks’ll use it.