H.R. 2316/S. 708 – Success in the Middle Act

Sponsor: Rep. Raul Grijalva (D-AZ) and Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI)

Purpose/Summary: Directs the Secretary of Education to make grants to states, based on their proportion of poor children aged 5 to 17, to: (1) implement state middle grades needs analyses and, on the basis of such analyses, improvement plans that describe what students must master to complete successfully the middle grades and succeed in academically rigorous secondary school coursework; and (2) award competitive subgrants to local educational agencies (LEAs) or partnerships of LEAs and institutions of higher education, educational service agencies, or educational nonprofit organizations to implement a comprehensive middle school improvement plan for each eligible school. Gives priority to LEAs, or partnerships that include LEAs, that serve high proportions of poor children and children attending eligible schools.

Provides the Secretary with funding to: (1) contract for studies that identify promising practices for, and review existing research to identify factors that might lead to, the improvement of middle grades education; (2) create a national clearinghouse in best middle grade educational practices and a national database identifying factors that facilitate or impede middle grade student achievement; (3) require certain educational field research designed to enhance the performance of middle grade schools and students; (4) create a research and development center that addresses topics pertinent to the middle grades; and (5) provide grants to entities that partner with states and LEAs to develop, adapt, or replicate effective models for turning around low-performing middle grades.

Status: House- 07/08/2013 Referred to the Subcommittee on Early Childhood, Elementary, and Secondary Education.

Senate- 04/11/2013 Read twice and referred to the Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions.

AFSA Position: Need to review legislation

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