Final Review of the 2014 GW/NASP Public Policy Institute

Supporting Student Resilience in the Family, School, and Community: Policy and Practice Directions for the Nation

From July 16–18, 76 school psychologists, teachers, school administrators, graduate students, and others interested in education policy came to Washington, DC to participate in the 2014 GW/NASP Public Policy Institute (PPI). The institute was cosponsored by George Washington University (GW) Graduate School in Education and Human Development (GSEHD). GW is one of the nation's premiere graduate schools training future leaders in special education and education public policy, and the 2014 PPI is the 5th institute since the approval of a formal partnership agreement between NASP and GW that allows the PPI to be offered on an annual basis. GW brings to the partnership resources, professional expertise, and professional connections that help make the PPI a rich public policy-training experience for all involved.

This year, PPI participants came from 30 states including Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Missouri, Mississippi, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Texas, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, and Wisconsin. PPI participants had the option of participating in a 3-day basic training (July 16–18) for NASP Continuing Professional Development (CPD) credit or a 5-day advanced training (July 16–18 and 21–22) for GWU Graduate Credit and additional NASP CPD credit. This year marked the first time 5-day advanced training was offered for CPD credit. An amazing line up of national experts presented information and engaged in dialogues with PPI participants. National leaders and scholars who participated in this year's PPI included:

  • Michael Usdan, Senior Fellow and Past President, Institute for Educational Leadership

  • Beth Doll, Associate Dean, Graduate School of Education, University of Nebraska-Lincoln

  • Maria Ferguson, Executive Director, Center on Education Policy

  • David Esquith, Director of the Office of Safe and Healthy Students, US Department of Education

  • Renee Bradley, Deputy Director of the Office of Special Education Programs, US Department of Education

  • Sean Slade, ASCD Director of Healthy School Communities

Members of the NASP Government and Professional Relations Committee, as well as key staff members, led an interactive discussion and provided education on the basics of grassroots advocacy. Carol Kochhar-Bryant, GWU Senior Associate Dean of GSHED, and Pamela Leconte, GWU Assistant Research Professor, also presented, led teamwork sessions, facilitated discussions, and led the "Communities of Practice" closing activity for GWU credit participants. You can view the full agenda for both the 3-day and 5-day training experiences and see the entire line up of speakers below.

Capitol Hill Day, July 18, 2014

On July 18, 2014 PPI participants traveled to the US Capitol to engage in a proactive day of advocacy. The day began in the US Capitol Visitors Center, sponsored by Representative Ron Barber (D-AZ-2). Participants enjoyed a continental breakfast and got an inside look at life on Capitol Hill through a question-and-answer session with legislative staff members. We thank Amanda Beaumont, Senior Education Policy Advisor for the Senate HELP Committee; Michael Gamel-McCormick, Disability Policy Director for the Senate HELP Committee; Lauren Alfred, Legislative Director for Representative Barber; and Vonnie Hampel, Press Secretary and Education Legislative Assistant for Representative Dave Loebsack (D-IA-2); for sharing their experiences working on Capitol Hill. After the morning session, state teams ventured into the halls of Congress to meet their elected officials and/or legislative staff. Close to 100 visits to the offices of US senators and US representatives were made that day. NASP materials and resources were presented and specific public policy priorities and issues were discussed.

Sample Presentations

PowerPoint presentations are accessible to current NASP members only. Please log in to see the links. PPI sessions included presentations from national experts, school psychology leaders, GWU faculty, and NASP staff. Samples of some of the presentations are included here: