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WASDE / WORLD CENSUS OF AGRICULTURE

“Monthly Calendar of Tasks” c. 1470 / Master of the Geneva Boccaccio

Much like its role as a discoverer of new knowledge and as a large consumer in the energy sector, the education industry has a significant role in food security research and as a consumer in its school lunch programs, dormitory, athletic facility and healthcare enterprises.  Accordingly — in much the same way we follow the US Census Bureau’s monthly construction activity report — we follow a data point provided by the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) as one of our stars to steer by.

The World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates (WASDE) is a monthly report published by the USDA that provides comprehensive forecast of supply and demand for major crops (global and United States) and livestock (U.S. only). The report provides an analysis of the fundamental condition of the agricultural commodity markets for the use of farmers, governments and other market participants.

 

World Agricultural Supply & Demand Estimates / July 2020

 

 

 

We maintain the WASDE report on our periodic Food and Federal Action teleconferences.   See our CALENDAR for the next online meeting; open to everyone


LEARN MORE:

Readings / Morrill Land-Grant Act

 

Federal Action

“Washington Crossing the Delaware” 1851 / Emanuel Leutze

 

“The supply of government exceeds the demand”

— Lewis Lapham

 

Once per month we walk through the legislative and executive action that affect the cost of education communities; with special attention to the way money flows into physical infrastructure — our cities-within-cities.

The education industry builds about $80 billion of new or renovated square footage it every year — and takes another $240 billion to manage it — making it the largest non-residential building construction market in the United States (CLICK HERE for our coverage of the monthly US Commerce Department report on construction activity).

Three-hundred billion running through any industry sets the foundation for market-making by incumbent stakeholders (“niche verticals“) using legislative processes.   Incumbents work the market on 2-3 fronts:

  • Direct legislative influence — i.e. crafting new legislation, or revising legacy legislation
  • Writing passages in codes and standards that are incorporated by reference into new or legacy legislation
  • Executive action

Some administrative information is available at the link below:

Congressional Budget Office: Education

In the process of scanning through technical details in best practice literature that frighten ordinary mortals, many federal proposals get “caught in the net” of our tracking algorithm.   (We usually throw them back)

We do not advocate in legislative action at any level — we are not lobbyists or communication consultants — but it is wise to follow because, when commenting opportunities present themselves, some knowledge of action elsewhere informs our response to the development of the consensus  products that do affect the cost of education in the United States.   For example, from time to time we find adjustments to the “boilerplate” legislation referenced in construction project bidding documents (Davis-Bacon Act, OSHA Rules of Construction, etc.)   These “adjustments” are supposed to be made public but unless you are one of the Washington insiders, you may miss them.

The ferocity of federal-level action may surprise you; with food, technology and energy-related proposals the most fierce; soon to be replaced in ferocity by legislative solutions responding to the COVID-19 pandemic.  We list a few proposals from the present (116th Congress) below:

H.R. 5148 / HIGHER EDUCATION STANDARDS IMPROVEMENT ACT

H.R. 5243 / CLOSING THE HOMEWORK GAP THROUGH MOBILE HOTSPOTS

S. 3397 / INSPIRES Act

S. 1611 / DIGIT ACT

H.R. 3128 / COLLEGIATE FREEDOM OF ASSOCIATION ACT

S. 1890 / RENEWABLE ENERGY IN PUBLIC SCHOOLS

H.R. 6809 / NURSE WORKFORCE PROTECTION ACT OF 2020

S. 3512 / AUTHORITY FOR REGULATING LABORATORY-DEVELOPED TESTING PROCEDURES

S. 735 / SUNLIGHT FOR UNACCOUNTABLE NON-PROFITS ACT

S. 3144 / YOUTH WORKFORCE READINESS ACT OF 2019

S. 2515 / TELECOMMUNICATIONS SAFETY ACT OF 2019

H.R. 3949 / SAFE DRINKING WATER IN PLAYGROUNDS

S. 1949 / SCHOOL FOOD MODERNIZATION ACT OF 2019

S. 2530 / SCHOOL SAFETY CLEARINGHOUSE ACT

S. 976 / CAMPUS ACCOUNTABILITY AND SAFETY ACT

H.R. 3967 / MUNICIPAL BOND MARKET SUPPORT

H.R. 865 / REBUILD AMERICA’S SCHOOLS ACT OF 2019

S. 1750 / CLEAN SCHOOL BUS GRANT PROGRAM

H.R. 2672 / NCAA ACT

…And so on.

To understand the underpinning of how codes and standards are developed, adopted and enforced, education facility managers should keep in mind that equipment and systems do not vote.  The people who invent, build, install and maintain them do vote.   We find that state agencies that administer the building codes for schools, colleges and universities are heavily influenced by labor interests.   As one of the largest construction markets in the United States, labor and financial market incumbents are involved.  For example, some labor unions devote resources to getting out the vote for school bond referendums in order to make work for their members.   Usually this outsized influence is for the better; but not always.  We devote an hour every month to State Action.   See our CALENDAR.

We are happy to walk you through all, or all of the most relevant, legislative proposals as of this posting.   Our algorithm picks up public commenting opportunities that federal agencies post on changes to existing legislation on a near-hourly basis.  We curate and list them a few in the link below:

Standing Agenda / US Federal Regulations

Energy-related proposals that affect the education industry energy agenda has also been omitted from this list and referred to our monthly Electrical, Mechanical and Energy standards teleconferences (See our CALENDAR).    Energy legislation and regulations are a crazy space and needs a separate meeting.  We host a monthly Energy Standards and  Management & Finance teleconference that cover public commenting opportunities in those spaces.

 

115th Congress. Photo Credit: Pew Research Center

 


LEARN MORE:

PBS-P100 Facilities Standards for the Public Buildings Service General Services Administration

Extension of the Section 179D deduction for energy efficient commercial buildings in H.R. 1865

ANSI CEO Joe Bhatia explains the US Technology Transfer & Advancement Act at the University of Michigan.

*(CLICK HERE for our post on how the Canadian Parliament reckons with the strengths and weaknesses of this law-making technique)

**As of this post, there is no publicly available group photo of the 116th Congress

Workspace: Federal Action

Readings / Higher Education Act of 1965

“The Attributes of the Arts and the Rewards Which Are Accorded Them” | Jean-Baptiste-Siméon Chardin (1766)

 

 

 

From the Wikipedia:  Higher Education Act of 1965

“…(Pub.L. 89–329) was legislation signed into United States law on November 8, 1965, as part of President Lyndon Johnson’s Great Society domestic agenda. Johnson chose Texas State University (then called “Southwest Texas State College”), his alma mater, as the signing site.  The law was intended “to strengthen the educational resources of our colleges and universities and to provide financial assistance for students in postsecondary and higher education”. It increased federal money given to universities, created scholarships, gave low-interest loans for students, and established a National Teachers Corps. The “financial assistance for students” is covered in Title IV of the HEA.

The Higher Education Act of 1965 was reauthorized in 1968, 1972, 1976, 1980, 1986, 1992, 1998, and 2008. Current authorization for the programs in the Higher Education Act expired at the end of 2013, but has been extended through 2015 while Congress prepares changes and amendments. Before each re-authorization, Congress amends additional programs, changes the language and policies of existing programs, or makes other changes….”

Link to original legislation:

EIGHTY-NINTH CONGRESS / Effective November 8, 1965


 

“Credegrees”

Mural by Eyer Middle School students, Macungie, Pennsylvania, 2017

 

We have another buzzword on our hands.

 

From the original ANSI post:

Kaplan University Partners, Inc. reports that the number one reason Americans value higher education is to get graduates “career ready.” Yet, the biggest concern employers have about college is the relevance of what students are learning and the work readiness of the graduates. When employers are asked what they want to see most in college graduates, the top things they cite are work-related experiences and industry-relevant skills. According to a 2013 Lumina Foundation and Gallup poll of the American public and business leaders, only 13% of Americans and 11% of C-level executives are confident that graduates are well prepared for success in the workplace. It is time to take action to turn the tide on this perception.

Workcred Joins Experts to Share Why College Will Soon Be About “Credegrees”

Introduction to Workcred

Facility Management Credentialing Organizations

 

 

 

 

Distance Education and Innovation

Lyndon Baines Johnson Federal Building / US Department of Education

The purpose of these distance education and innovation regulations is to reduce barriers to innovation in the way institutions deliver educational materials and opportunities to students, and assess their knowledge and understanding, while providing reasonable safeguards to limit the risks to students and taxpayers. Institutions of higher education may be dissuaded from innovating because of added regulatory burden and uncertainty about how the Department will apply its regulations to new types of programs and methods of institutional educational delivery.

Docket ID:ED-2018-OPE-0076

We reviewed a few of the 248 comments received during our Federal action teleconference,  We picked a few representative comments to enlighten understanding:

Western Governors University

National Student Legal Defense Network

Center for American Progress

We are watching for further action.  See our CALENDAR for the next Federal action teleconference; open to everyone.

 

RFI on Energy Efficiency Standards for External Power Supplies / July 6th

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Readings / Elementary and Secondary Education Act

“The Attributes of the Arts and the Rewards Which Are Accorded Them” | Jean-Baptiste-Siméon Chardin (1766)

From the Wikipedia:  Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965:

“…Title I (“Title One”), which is a provision of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act passed in 1965, is a program created by the U.S. Department of Education to distribute funding to schools and school districts with a high percentage of students from low-income families, with the intention to create programs that will better children who have special needs that without funding could not be properly supported.[5] Funding is distributed first to state educational agencies (SEAs) which then allocate funds to local educational agencies (LEA’s) which in turn dispense funds to public schools in need.[6] Title I also helps children from families that have migrated to the United States and youth from intervention programs who are neglected or at risk of abuse. The act allocates money for educational purposes for the next five fiscal years until it is reauthorized.[7] In addition, Title I appropriates money to the education system for the persecution of high retention rates of students and the improvement of schools; these appropriations are carried out for five fiscal years until reauthorization.[7][8]

According to the National Center for Education Statistics, to be an eligible Title I school, at least 40% of a school’s students must be from low-income families who qualify under the United States Census‘s definition of low-income, according to the U.S. Department of Education.[6][9]

Title I mandates services both to eligible public school students and eligible private school students.[6] This is outlined in section 1120 of Title I, Part A of the ESEA as amended by the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB). Title I states that it gives priority to schools that are in obvious need of funds, low-achieving schools, and schools that demonstrate a commitment to improving their education standards and test scores.

There are two types of assistance that can be provided by Title I funds.[6] The first is a “schoolwide program” in which schools can dispense resources in a flexible manner.[10] The second is a “targeted assistance program” which allows schools to identify students who are failing or at risk of failing.[6]

Assistance for school improvement includes government grants, allocations, and reallocations based on the school’s willingness to commit to improving their standing in the educational system. Each educational institution requesting these grants must submit an application that describes how these funds will be used in restructuring their school for academic improvement.[8]

Schools receiving Title I funding are regulated by federal legislation. Most recently, this legislation includes the No Child Left Behind Act, which was passed in 2001.[6] In the 2006–2007 school year, Title I provided assistance to over 17 million students who range from kindergarten through twelfth grade.[6] The majority of the funds (60%) were given to students between kindergarten through fifth grade.[6] The next highest group that received funding were students in sixth through eighth grade (21%).[6] Finally, 16% of the funds went to students in high school with 3% provided to students in preschool.[6]

Link to original legislation:

EIGHTY-NINTH CONGRESS / April 11, 1965


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