November 2021 | Number 469
US House of Representatives Passes Bill with Concerning Childcare and Pre-K Provisions
The US House of Representatives passed the $2.2 trillion "Build Back Better" reconciliation bill today, which includes language creating new childcare and pre-k programs, the design of which has caused concerns among many private school advocates. CAPE wrote House and Senate leaders this week to lay out some of those concerns. That letter can be read here.

The letter describes how under the bill, providers participating in these programs will be considered recipients of federal financial assistance and subject to the rules and regulations that come with that status. This is a stark departure from thirty years of policy under the Child Care and Development Block Grant (CCDBG) program, through which childcare providers have not been considered recipients of federal financial assistance. If small providers are required to comply with costly mandates they cannot afford, and if faith-based providers are required to comply with regulations that are in conflict with their religious beliefs, it will drastically reduce the number of providers able and willing to participate, and will severely restrict the choices long enjoyed by parents.

The bill now heads to the Senate. Private school supporters can contact their representatives and senators on this issue through the CAPE Legislative Action Center.
Biden Administration Suspends Vaccine Mandate in Response to Court Order
The Biden Administration has put its nationwide vaccine and testing mandate on hold following a decision by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit questioning its constitutionality. All of the lawsuits challenging the Administration's policy, which would apply to an estimated 100 million American workers, have now been consolidated into a single case to be judged by the Sixth Circuit.

The Administration policy would require workers at companies with 100 employees or more to be vaccinated or to undergo weekly testing. Unvaccinated employees would be required to wear masks.
Michigan Governor Vetoes School Choice
Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer has vetoed education savings account legislation, the funds from which would have been eligible for use towards private school tuition. According to Chalkbeat, the legislation would have authorized "tax credits for people who contribute to new Opportunity Scholarships that can be used for private school tuition or for services that supplement public education such as tutoring, books, band instruments, speech therapy, and transportation to extra-curricular activities.

"Eligible private school students could receive up to $7,830 per year — 90% of the foundation allowance for public school students. Eligible public school students in special education programs could receive up to $1,100 and others could be eligible for up to $500.

"Eligibility is limited to students whose family income falls below 200% of the eligibility limits for free and reduced-priced government lunch programs. That would make a family of four earning less than $98,000 eligible. Students in foster care or who receive special education services could receive the scholarships regardless of income."
Cato Private Schooling Status Tracker
During the pandemic, the Cato Institute began tracking closures of private schools that resulted from the COVID economy. That tracker is now being updated to include demographic, tuition, and other data for all private school openings and closures. You can view it here.
More Than Half of Florida Private School Students Receiving Scholarship
According to reimaginED, more than half of all K-12 private school students enroll with help of a scholarship. "According to data from the Florida Department of Education’s annual and quarterly reports, along with data from Step Up For Students...180,127 K-12 students received a scholarship and enrolled in a private school," which represents 54.3% of all K-12 students in private schools in the state.
National Assessment of Educational Progress Shows Falling Test Scores
From the Washington Post:

"Even before the pandemic upended school, test scores in both reading and math declined for 13-year-old students, the first drop registered in a half century in testing meant to measure student proficiency over time.

"The data showed declines among the lowest-performing students, but not those at the top, suggesting that educational gaps that pervade the U.S. system are becoming larger, not smaller.

"Peggy Carr, commissioner of the National Center for Education Statistics, has been working with these data for 28 years and couldn’t believe the results when she saw them. She was shocked to see an absolute decline. 'I had to ask the question again of my staff. 'Are you sure?' I asked them to go back and check,' she said."

Visit to view the full report.
CAPE's 50th Anniversary
On November November 23, 1971, the Council for American Private Education filed articles of incorporation with the recorder of deeds in Washington, DC. Charter board members of CAPE listed on the paperwork that day were:

Edward R. D'Alessio – United States Catholic Conference
John A. Vander Ark – National Union of Christian Schools
AI H. Senske – Board of Parish Education of the Lutheran Church, Missouri Synod
Thomas S. Brown – Friends Council on Education
Rev. John Paul Carter – National Association of Episcopal Schools
Rev. C. Albert Koob – National Catholic Educational Association
Cary Potter – National Association of Independent Schools
Dr. Joseph Kaminetsky – National Society for Hebrew Day Schools

Among the purposes for which the corporation was organized were “encouraging a vigorous diversity in education to match our country’s heritage of pluralism” and “enhancing opportunities for more families to have a realistic choice among schools for their children.”

For fifty years, CAPE has strived to do exactly that, and more. Thank you to everyone who has been a part of CAPE during that time, and special thanks to the founders of this remarkable organization.
Private Education: Good for Students, Good for Families, Good for America
CAPE member organizations:

Agudath Israel of America

Association of Christian Schools

Association of Christian
Teachers and Schools

Association of Waldorf
Schools of N.A.

Christian Schools International

Council of Islamic Schools
in North America

Council on Educational Standards
and Accountability
Evangelical Lutheran Church
in America

Friends Council on Education

Islamic Schools League of America

Lutheran Church–Missouri Synod

National Association of
Episcopal Schools

National Association of
Independent Schools

National Catholic
Educational Association
National Christian School

Office for Lasallian Education
Christian Brothers Conference

Oral Roberts University
Educational Fellowship

Seventh-day Adventist
Board of Education

United States Conference of
Catholic Bishops

Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran
Synod Schools
Affiliated State Organizations a coalition of national associations serving private schools K-12

Executive Director:
Michael Schuttloffel

Outlook is published monthly (September to June) by CAPE.
ISSN 0271-145

1300 Pennsylvania Ave, NW
Washington, DC 20004
Tel: 844-883-CAPE
Michael Schuttloffel
Executive Director
Phone: 844-883-CAPE