ERIC Identifier: ED390023 Publication Date: 1995-00-00
Author: Talley, Ronda C. - Short, Rick Jay Source: ERIC
Clearinghouse on Counseling and Student Services Greensboro NC., American
Psychological Association Washington DC.
Education and Health Care Advocacy: Perspectives on Goals 2000,
IASA, IDEA and Healthy People 2000. ERIC Digest.
American education is changing. With the release of A Nation at Risk in 1983,
the Americans focused on the report's declaration of "a rising tide of
mediocrity" in the schools, which suggested unacceptable results in the
education of America's children and youth (Talley & Short, 1995). Numerous
other publications (Beyond Rhetoric, 1991; Raising Standards for American
Education, 1992) have contributed to the criticism of schools and the
educational process. Concurrent to the missives levied at schools' lack of
progress with academics and other education-specific goals, policy makers and
researchers also have questioned the nation's commitment to the health of its
children. With the publication of "Healthy People 2000" (1990) by the U.S.
Department of Health and Human Services, attention was drawn to the dramatic and
unmet health needs of preschool and school-aged youngsters.
Spurred by these and other reports, school staff are reassessing traditional
methods of doing business and are implementing innovations designed to produce a
nation of "world-class citizens" (National Education Goals Panel, 1994). They
also are striving to respond to these social reforms in education, health care,
and human services within the schools.
The upheaval in the nation's education
system has been noted and evaluated by numerous researchers and policy makers
(Payzant, in press). The centerpiece of the current reform is a set of eight
national educational goals enacted in the Goals 2000: Educate America Act
(1994). It should be noted that education reform extends far beyond the eight
national education goals; it reaches into the very fiber of school structures
and management (Payzant, in press). Comprehensive education reform includes
provisions such as site-based decision making and incentive structures designed
to reward the performance of school personnel (Phillips & Boysen, in press).
HEALTH CARE REFORM
The need for reform in our nation's
health care system was recognized long before the current administration
introduced the Health Security Act of 1994 (HSA), which stimulated debate on
this issue at state and local levels. Proposed health care reform legislation
addressed schools as health service delivery sites (Talley & Short, in
press) and as public health mechanisms (Talley & Short, 1994b). However,
others (Centers for Disease Control & Prevention, 1993; Kolbe, 1995; Kolbe,
Collins, & Cortese, in press) have articulated the relationship of health
care to education. In their seminal article, Allensworth and Kolbe (1987)
outlined eight components of school health: health education; physical
education; health services; nutrition services; health promotion for staff;
counseling, psychological, and social services; healthy school environment; and
HUMAN SERVICES REFORM: SERVICES INTEGRATION
education reform and health care reform simultaneously is an ambitious task.
However, with increasingly complex student needs and the demands for
accountability that accompany reform, more school systems are turning outward
for assistance from parents, family members, businesses, community agencies, and
other related organizations. School administrators and community leaders are
realizing that they cannot help many students reach levels of accomplishment and
well-being without providing more holistic, "wraparound" services. These forms
of services integration are gaining increasing popularity as schools join with
other agencies to offer comprehensive and coordinated service delivery systems
for children and youth (Dryfoos, 1994; Paavola, et al., 1995, in press).
LEGISLATIVE/POLICY RESPONSES TO SOCIAL REFORM
Based on the
social reform movements mentioned previously, Congress and other governmental
bodies have sought ways to respond to the needs inherent in each movement
(Talley, 1995). The legislation and policy document discussed in the next
section demonstrate advocates' attempts to support reformed schools at the
national, state, and local levels.
GOALS 2000: EDUCATE AMERICA ACT
P.L. 103-227, the Goals 2000: Educate America Act, authorized federal support
for education reform. Signed into law on March 31, 1994, the major provisions of
the eight goals were conceived at the Education Reform Summit of 1989, which was
called by President Bush for the nation's governors. Summit attendees, lead by
then-Governor Bill Clinton, hammered out a set of six education goals to direct
the nation's effort in developing world-class students. Congress then added two
additional goals. The Goals 2000 legislation states that by the year 2000, the
following objectives will be met:
Goal 1: "Readiness for School." All children will start school ready to learn.
Goal 2: "School Completion." The high school graduation rate will increase to at
least 90 percent.
Goal 3: "Student Achievement and Citizenship." All students will leave grades 4,
8, and 12 having demonstrated competency over challenging subject matter
including English, mathematics, science, foreign languages, civics and
government, economics, arts, history, and geography, and every school in America
will ensure that all students learn to use their minds well, so that our
students may be prepared for responsible citizenship, further learning, and
productive employment in our Nation's modern economy.
Goal 4: "Teacher Education and Professional Development." The Nation's teaching
force will have both access to programs for the continued improvement of their
professional skills and the opportunity to acquire the knowledge and skills
needed to instruct and prepare all American students for the next century.
Goal 5: "Mathematics and Science." United States students will be the first in
the world in mathematics and science achievement.
Goal 6: "Adult Literacy and Lifelong Learning." Every adult American will be
literate and will possess the knowledge and skills necessary to compete in a
global economy. Each adult will exercise the rights and responsibilities of
Goal 7: "Safe, Disciplined, and Alcohol- and Drug-Free Schools." Every school in
the United States will be free of drugs, violence, and the unauthorized presence
of firearms and alcohol and will offer a disciplined environment conducive to
Goal 8: "Parental and Family Involvement." Every school will promote
partnerships that will increase parental involvement and participation in
promoting the social, emotional, and academic growth of children.
In addition to codifying the eight national education goals, Goals 2000
created both a National Education Goals Panel (NEGP) to monitor progress toward
the goals, and a system to certify national curriculum content standards,
national pupil performance standards, national opportunity-to-learn standards,
and state standards and assessment, all of which are voluntary (Stedman, 1994b).
The Act also provides waivers of requirements and regulations under designated
federal education programs, grants for implementation of state systemic reform
efforts, and a national board to establish occupational skill standards (U.S.
Department of Education, 1994, 1995). The Act contains numerous related
provisions, many of which are being attacked by the 104th Congress now in
session (Talley & Short, in press).
Each state Goals 2000 action plan must address the following elements: (a)
teaching and learning standards, and assessment; (b) opportunity-to-learn
standards or strategies; (c) governance, accountability, and management; (d)
parent and community partnerships; (e) system-wide improvements; (f) bottom-up
reform; (g) dropout prevention; (h) coordination for school-to-work programs;
(i) milestones and timelines; (j) coordination strategies; and (k) program
improvement (U.S. Department of Education, 1995).
IMPROVING AMERICA'S SCHOOLS ACT (IASA)
America's Schools Act (IASA; P.L. 103-382) was signed into law on October 20,
1994. It rewrites the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (ESEA), the
largest single source of federal support for K-12 education in the United
States, and authorizes its programs through 1999. Created as part of President
Lyndon Johnson's War on Poverty, this $11-billion-a-year Act has provided
federal assistance to poor schools, poor communities, and poor children for
nearly 30 years. The Act authorizes most federal elementary and secondary
education programs, including the Title I program, to provide compensatory
education to educationally disadvantaged students. The IASA, while amending
ESEA, also amends other legislation and establishes new programs (Stedman,
Changes made to ESEA reflect the following broad themes: (a) linkages are
created between major ESEA programs and systemic education reform, particularly
Goals 2000; (b) states, localities, and schools will have increased
administrative flexibility; (c) new foci on emerging areas of interest, such as
technology, school safety, and school management, are included; and (d) there is
greater targeting on students and schools with high needs.
With these amendments, several changes will be felt at the state and school
levels. Future Title I funding is made contingent on State's having curriculum
content and pupil performance standards, also a requirement under Goals 2000. In
addition, the U.S. Department of Education is given authority to waive a wide
array of requirements for ESEA programs for up to three years. Waivers may be
extended if student performance has increased. States and local education
agencies are also permitted to consolidate some program administration funds and
transfer up to 5 percent of program funds under one area to another designated
program. The IASA requires targeting of high-poverty schools and authorizes
grants to reward states with high fiscal effort and low disparities in school
Support is also provided for the infusion of technology into the curriculum,
to underwrite schools' participation in the national information highway, to
experiment with new forms of school management, such as public charter schools
and private management of schools, and to increase school safety through the
newly added component, the Safe and Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act.
INDIVIDUALS WITH DISABILITIES EDUCATION ACT (IDEA)
94-142, the Education for All Handicapped Children Act of 1975, was amended in
1990 to become Part B of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act. The
IDEA mandates free appropriate public education (FAPE) in the least restrictive
environment for all students with special educational needs. This premiere piece
of legislation for special-needs students radically changed the way school
psychologists served schools, moving them into a primarily testing-for-placement
role. However, under the law, school psychologists are designated "related
service providers" and can provide counseling and other therapeutic services for
children if those services are written into a student's individual education
The original legislation was amended in 1986 by P. L. 99-457 to include
children under the age of five. Children from three to five years of age were
made eligible for FAPE under the Preschool Grants Program (Section 619, Part B),
while Part H of the new law established a statewide comprehensive system of
early intervention services for infants and toddlers. The law also requires
service providers to develop a family-centered, multidisciplinary family service
plan for each child and family.
HEALTHY PEOPLE 2000
Healthy People 2000: National Health Promotion and Disease Prevention
Objectives (1990) is a policy document, promulgated by the U.S. Department of
Health and Human Services, that has as its major focus the nation's commitment
to three broad goals:
to increase the span of healthy life for Americans,
to reduce health disparities among Americans, and
to achieve access to preventive services for all Americans. Healthy People 2000
presents 300 measurable targets or objectives to be met by the year 2000. These
are organized into 22 priority areas, with 21 of them grouped as health
promotion, health protection, or preventive services (data and surveillance
activities constitute the 22nd area).
Combined with Goals 2000, Healthy People 2000 spotlights the important
interrelationships between health and education for children and youth. At least
15 of the Healthy People 2000 objectives are directly achievable by schools. In
addition, it is estimated that schools can play important roles in meeting
nearly 100 additional Healthy People 2000 objectives (Kolbe, Collins, &
Cortese, in press; U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 1992).
A CALL FOR ADVOCACY
Social reforms reflect society's
attempt to address dramatic challenges to the social order; such reforms impact
the population as a whole and children in particular. Since schools are a
reflection of the communities in which they are embedded, social reform does not
stop at the schoolhouse door, but rather is felt throughout the education
Challenges to educational excellence, threats to child safety and
development, and malaise in a human services system which is often fragmented
and dysfunctional, rarely addressing the needs of those it was designed to
serve, all factor together to compel action. The legislation and policy
described in this article are attempts to address one of our nation's most
serious challenges: the education and protection of our children. Psychologists,
as experts in education, health, and human services, have a responsibility to
lend their expertise, skills, and leadership to this tremendous challenge [to
the educational and protection of our children].
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