FDA advisors set to examine Novavax Covid-19 vaccine

by David Lim, Katherine Ellen Foley, Lauren Gardner

06.07.22   DECISION TIME FOR NOVAVAX — Today marks a significant day for Maryland-based vaccine maker Novavax: FDA’s independent advisers will vote on whether to recommend the agency authorize its Covid-19 shot for emergency use in adults. But why does the U.S. need another Covid vaccine in its arsenal when nearly 77percent of adults here are fully vaccinated? The benefits of having another vaccine technology have become clear with the diminished status of Johnson & Johnson&… Continue Reading

Impending abortion decision weighs on politicians, health care officials

by Amanda Eisenberg and Shannon Young

06.06.22   SESSION ENDS — With the U.S. Supreme Court expected to soon issue a ruling that could strike down the landmark Roe v. Wade decision, Albany lawmakers spent the final days of the 2022 legislative session passing a series of bills to shore up protections for abortion providers and patients who travel to New York for the procedure, POLITICO’s Shannon Young reports. The Assembly approved legislation late Thursday that would prohibit disciplinary measures against heal… Continue Reading

Starbucks workers claim their store is closing due to union activism

by Ramishah Maruf

06.06.22   Starbucks workers at an Ithaca, New York, store claim their location is being shut down in retaliation for their union activism.  The worker committee said it is filing an Unfair Labor Practice charge with the National Labor Relations Board, alleging that Starbucks is making a “clear attempt to scare workers across the country,” a press release from the Starbucks Workers United said.  On Friday, Starbucks informed employees in its College Avenue location near Cornell Univ… Continue Reading

Teachers unions hit the Hill ahead of gun safety votes

by Eleanor Mueller

06.06.22   ORGANIZED LABOR SPEAKS OUT ON SCHOOL SHOOTINGS: The nation’s two largest teachers unions are mobilizing against gun violence on the Hill this week as the House prepares to consider two bills that would aim to restrict access to firearms. Their lobbying comes after a gunman killed 19 students and two teachers last month in the second-deadliest school shooting in U.S. history. On the schedule: NEA President Becky Pringle and AFT President Randi Weingarten will both part… Continue Reading

The Potential Dark Side of a White-Hot Labor Market

by Jeanna Smialek

06.06.22   Shanna Jackson, the president of Nashville State Community College, is struggling with a dilemma that reads like good news: Her students are taking jobs from employers who are eager to hire, and paying them good wages. The problem is that students often drop their plans to earn a degree in order to take the attractive positions offered by these desperate employers. Ms. Jackson is worried that when the labor market cools — a near certainty as the Federal Reserve Board raises interest rates… Continue Reading

Climate change is forcing schools to close early for the 'heat days'

by Laura Meckler and Anna Phillips

06.04.22   Michelle Braxton holds her daughter, Dior Braxton, 4, when picking her up during the early dismissal at Franklin Square Elementary/Middle School in Baltimore, Md., due to lack of air conditioning in the school building and high temperatures, on May 31, 2022. (Vincent Alban/The Baltimore Sun/AP) Temperatures kept rising in Philadelphia and Baltimore. Finally, it was just too hot to keep students in classrooms without air conditioning. On Tuesday, both systems let students out early. For… Continue Reading

Looking to boost Native American education while preserving tribal culture, federal education representatives visit North Idaho as $1 million grant rolls outs

by Jim Allen

06.04.22   DE SMET, Idaho – The families of the Coeur d’Alene Tribe could use some help from the federal government. The right kind of help, that is – a point made clear Friday when two senior officials from the Department of Education visited the tribal school in Benewah County. “It’s important that education isn’t something that’s being done to us,” said Chris Meyer, director of education for the tribe. Chief James Allan was more direct, recalling that l… Continue Reading

Baby Formula Plant That Shut Down and Fueled Crisis Restarts Production

by Vimal Patel

With thousands of kids secluded & restrained, Congress again tries to ban practices

by Joce Sterman, Alex Brauer and Andrea Nejman

03.24.22   According to the Department of Education, more than 100,000 students in a single school year were subjected to a set of controversial practices known as seclusion and restraint, where children are isolated in special rooms or tied down in certain scenarios. With calls to ban the practices growing louder, Congress is again trying to pass legislation it says will protect students, specifically those with disabilities who are disproportionately impacted. Kristi Kimmel has been slowly watching her … Continue Reading

Calls Mount in Congress for Federal Probe of Keiser University

by David Halperin

03.23.22   Senior leaders in the U.S. Congress, including the chairs of the House Veterans Affairs, House Education and Labor, and Senate Judiciary committees, have now called on the Department of Education to investigate Florida’s Keiser University and its controversial conversion to non-profit status — a deal that has continued to enrich the school’s politically powerful “Chancellor and CEO,” Arthur Keiser. The most recent letter to the Department, not previously … Continue Reading

A petition for an $18 minimum wage is gaining signatures in California. What that means for the hourly worker

by Carmen Reinicke

03.17.22   Just months after a federal $15 minimum wage failed to take shape, Californians may get the chance to vote on even higher minimum hourly pay. A measure to raise the state’s minimum wage to $18 began to collect signatures in February. If the campaign, called the Living Wage Act of 2022, gets 700,000 signatures, it will be on California’s November ballot. “The purchasing power of the minimum wage declines over time,” said Joe Sanberg, an entrepreneur and sponsor of the le… Continue Reading

Biden Urged to Extend Freeze on Loan Payments

by Scott Jaschik

03.17.22   The Democratic chairs of the Senate and House education committees urged President Biden to extend the freeze on student loan payments, which currently is expected to end in May. U.S. Senator Patty Murray of Washington State, chair of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee, said, “That’s why I’m pleased to see signs the Biden administration is considering extending the student loan payment pause, and why I am calling on them to do so until at least 2023 an… Continue Reading

Millions of kids face risk of hunger if Congress doesn't extend pandemic school lunch waivers

by Tami Luhby

03.09.22   Millions of needy children have had an easier time getting free meals at school and over the summer thanks to waivers Congress authorized at the start of the Covid-19 pandemic. But that nourishment is now at risk. Lawmakers have not yet agreed to extend the waivers past June 30 in the full-year spending package unveiled early Wednesday morning.  Authorized by the US Department of Agriculture, the waivers allow schools to distribute free meals to all students without verifying … Continue Reading

House passes sweeping $1.5 trillion omnibus spending bill

by Aris Folley and Cristina Marcos

03.09.22   The House passed a sweeping $1.5 trillion omnibus spending package on Wednesday night to fund the government, hours after lawmakers scrapped billions in funding to combat the COVID-19 pandemic amid resistance from Democrats upset about plans to yank already allocated relief from states. The last-minute revolt over the COVID-19 funding from Democrats angered over a GOP-demanded offset upended a delicately negotiated package between congressional leaders of both parties. As part o… Continue Reading

Senate, House pass resolutions condemning recent bomb threats against HBCUs

by Sarah Fearing

03.08.22   The U.S. Senate and House of Representatives on Tuesday passed bipartisan resolutions condemning recent bomb threats against Historically Black Colleges and Universities. U.S. Sens. Mark Warner and Tim Kaine (D-Va.) applauded the passage of the Senate resolution in a news release Tuesday evening. The resolutions reaffirm the government’s commitment to combatting violence against students, faculty, and staff. Since January, the Federal Bureau of Investigation has reported 44 bomb threats… Continue Reading

U.S. adds 678,000 jobs in February, with labor market nearing full recovery from pandemic

by Abha Bhattarai and Andrew Van Dam

03.04.22   The U.S. economy created a blockbuster 678,000 jobs in February, adding momentum to a robust recovery that is rapidly returning the labor market to its pre-pandemic boom. As the omicron variant of the novel coronavirus receded, the unemployment rate fell to a new pandemic low of 3.8 percent last month, from 4 percent in January, the Labor Department said Friday. Average hourly wages for private-sector workers, meanwhile, held steady, climbing by a mere one cent. Annual w… Continue Reading

Lawmakers spar on DOL ESG proposal, discuss retirement security

by Brian Croce

03.01.22   Lawmakers on both sides of the aisle Tuesday discussed the merits of bipartisan retirement security bills but their opinions diverged greatly on a Department of Labor proposal that would explicitly permit retirement plan fiduciaries to consider climate change and other environmental, social and governance factors when selecting investments and exercising shareholder rights. Members of the House Committee on Education and Labor's Health, Employment, Labor, and Pensions Subcommittee spent a lot o… Continue Reading

When colleges defraud students, should the government go after school executives?

by Corey Turner

03.01.22   In a shocking investigation, the U.S. Senate declared the federal student loan program "plagued by fraud and abuse." Its report heaped scorn on for-profit trade schools for serving 22% of federal student loan borrowers but accounting for 44% of defaults. "The school keeps the student aid money ... and the student is left holding the bag with a poor credit rating, no job and no income to repay the student loan," U.S. Rep. Marge Roukema, R-N.J., declaimed in her crusade against for-profit "b… Continue Reading

When colleges defraud students, should the government go after school executives?

by Corey Turner

03.01.22   In a shocking investigation, the U.S. Senate declared the federal student loan program "plagued by fraud and abuse." Its report heaped scorn on for-profit trade schools for serving 22% of federal student loan borrowers but accounting for 44% of defaults. "The school keeps the student aid money ... and the student is left holding the bag with a poor credit rating, no job and no income to repay the student loan," U.S. Rep. Marge Roukema, R-N.J., declaimed in her crusade against for-profit "bad ap… Continue Reading

What the CDC’s Relaxed Mask Recommendations Mean for Schools

by Evie Blad

02.25.22   Federal officials relaxed mask recommendations Friday, introducing new COVID-19 metrics that will give school districts the green light to end face-covering requirements in a broad swath of the country. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention had previously recommended universal indoor masking in K-12 schools, regardless of vaccination status or level of community transmission. Under Friday’s new metrics, the agency recommends universal masking in public settings, including sc… Continue Reading

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