2010 Legislative Summit 

International Convention Center
Louisville, Kentucky
July 25-28, 2010

NCSL Standing Committee on Education Agenda

  Monday| Tuesday | Wednesday

Sunday, July 25

6:30 am - 5:00 pm


3:00 pm - 4:00 pm

Improving Higher Education Productivity Without New Dollars:  Good Policy--Good Practice

With state budgets stressed and ARRA funding used up, states are facing the prospects of making even larger cuts to higher education. With no new revenue sources to tap, legislators are focusing instead on improving the productivity of the system. Examine proven and practical policy reforms that are being implemented in states to improve productivity and save money.  NCSL Staff Contact: Julie Davis Bell


  • Paul Aguilar, Legislative Finance Committee, New Mexico


  • Dennis Jones, National Center for Higher Education Management System, Colorado
  • Pat Callan, National Center for Public Policy and Higher Education, California

4:15 pm - 5:30 pm

State Innovations in Career and Technical Education
(Joint with the NCSL Labor and Economic Development Committee)

Career and technical education (CTE) plays a valuable role during an economic recovery. In addition to conventional functions of preparing students for employment and postsecondary education and training, CTE programs can be adapted to meet future workforce needs in high-growth and emerging industries. This session will examine how states are using innovations such as career pathways to address the needs of students and the workforce, and outline successful state examples.  NCSL Staff Contacts: David Shreve and Robert Strange


  • Senator Gary LeBeau, Connecticut
    Vice Chair, NCSL Labor and Economic Development Committee


  • Stephen DeWitt, Association for Career and Technical Education, Virginia
  • Cindy Fiorella, Workforce and Economic Development, Owensboro Community and Technical College, Kentucky
  • Kimberly Green, National Association of State Directors of Career Technical Education Consortium, Maryland
  • Kathy Shibley, Office of Career-Technical and Adult Education, Ohio Department of Education, Ohio

7:00 pm - 9:00 pm 

Legislative Education Staff Network Dutch Treat Dinner

Join education staff colleagues from around the country for a great evening at a local restaurant! All legislative staff and their spouses or guests are invited to attend this Dutch Treat dinner. NCSL Staff Contact:  Sara Shelton. 

Monday, July 26

7:00 am - 9:00 am 

Continental Breakfast


7:00 am - 5:30 pm  


7:00 am - 8:00 am


Joint Legislative Health Staff Network (LHSN) and Legislative Education Staff Network (LESN) Breakfast
NCSL gratefully acknowledges the support of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation)

The Legislative Education Staff Network and the Legislative Health Staff Network are hosting this special session for all legislative staff working on education and health issues. Come meet and mingle, eat breakfast and learn about various state initiatives on school nutrition and physical education.  NCSL Staff Contact:  Sara Shelton


  • Paul Aguilar, Legislative Finance Committee, New Mexico
    Staff Chair, NCSL Standing Committee on Education
    NCSL Co-Chair, Legislative Education Staff Network
  • Mark Andrews, Utah Legislature
    Chair, Legislative Health Staff Network


  • Cheryl Reinhart, Bureau of Legislative Research, Arkansas
    Steering Committee, Legislative Education Staff Network
  • Amy Winterfeld, NCSL Health Program, Colorado
  • Miriam Fordham, Legislative Research Commission, Kentucky

8:15 am - 9:45 am 

Does Congress Really Care About the States?

U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and U.S. Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell headline the opening ceremony for the 2010 NCSL Legislative Summit.  Hear their perspectives on key national issues and the relationship between states and the federal government.  A welcome from Kentucky's legislative leaders and a tribute to state legislators and state legislative staff who served in current U.S. military operations overseas will highlight this session.


  • Georgia State Senator Don Balfour,
    NCSL President


  •  U.S. House Speaker, Nancy Pelosi, California


  • Kentucky Senate President David Williams and House Speaker Greg Stumbo


  • U.S. Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell, Kentucky


10:15 am - 12:00 pm

Federal Update and Business Meeting

This session starts with an update to committee members on federal legislative activity, including ESEA authorization and Phase II of Race to the Top.  The committee will consider taking action on any policies brought before the committee.  NCSL Staff Contacts:  David Shreve and Robert Strange


  • Representative Larry Bell, North Carolina
    Chair, NCSL Standing Committee on Education


  • David Shreve, National Conference of State Legislatures, Washington, D.C.
  • Robert Strange, National Conference of State Legislatures, Washington, D.C.

12:00 pm - 1:30 pm

Linking Student Growth to Teacher Evaluations and Tenure
(Lunch is sponsored by the National Education Association)

With financial incentives from the federal Race to the Top competition, some states have enacted legislation tying student achievement to teacher and principal evaluations and tenure.  Does research say that this is good policy?  Can state policymakers use test data to evaluate educatiors fairly and equitably?  What is an appropriate role for state legislators in local and even school-based decision-making?  Hear from legislators, teacher unions and experts about the major arguments on all sides of this increasingly emotional, high-profile debate.  NCSL Staff Contact; Michelle Exstrom


  • Senator John Goedde, Idaho
       Vice Chair, NCSL Standing Committee on Education


  • Dennis Van Roekel, National Education Association, Washington, D.C.
  • Laura Goe, Educational Testing Service, New Jersey
  • Michelle Exstrom, NCSL Education Program, Colorado
  • Representative Mark Maddox, Tennessee

1:30 pm - 3:15 pm

Coming to Our Senses:  A P-20 Approach to Improving Student Success

 In 2008, The College Board's National Commission on Access, Admissions and Success in Higher Education developed recommendations to dramatically improve the number of adults with postsecondary credentials and degrees.  The strategy focuses on state reform of 10 key parts of the P-20 system which taken together can improve student outcomes and international competitiveness.  NCSL and The College Board have joined together to translate the Commission's recommendations into a practical step-by-step guide specifically for state legislators, which will be discussed and disseminated at this session.  NCSL Staff Contact:  Julie Davis Bell


  • Jennifer Jenkins, The College Board, New York


  • Tom Rudin, The College Board, New York


  • Representative Rae Ann Kelsch, North Dakota
  • Representative Roy Takumi, Hawaii
  • Julie Pelegrin, Office of Legislative Legal Services, Colorado
  • Paula Dominguez, Legislative Research, Rhode Island

 3:30 pm - 5:00 pm

What Can be Done at the State Policy Level to Ensure Quality Charter Schools

At this point of the charter school movement, ensuring quality in charter schools is important to states that have had them since the beginning, as well as those that are debating new charter laws.  Come hear from a researcher and state legislators on what is being done to ensure quality in charter schools.  NCSL Staff Contact:  Yilan Shen


  • Senator Clark Jolley, Oklahoma
    Vice Chair, NCSL Standing Committee on Education  


  • Representative Harry Moberly, Kentucky
  • Representative Rich Crandall, Arizona
  • Robin Lake, Center on Reinventing Public Education, University of Washington

5:15 pm - 6:15 pm

The College Board Reception

Please join NCSL and The College Board for a creception in honor of the release of the new joint publication, "The College Completion Agenda: State Policy Guide."  Meet the authors and talk about the policy issues discussed in the publication, Everyone is welcome.

6:00 pm - 11:00 pm

Social Event:  Country, Culture and Cuisine on the Waterfront

The spirit of Kentucky is on parade tonight!  Wyonna Judd, Loretta Lynn and Patty Loveless—three great champions of country music—star in our private concert on the shores of the Ohio River.  You'll enjoy a delicious Southern dinner and stroll through a crafts village featuring traditional Kentucky arts and crafts.  Visit the memorial to one of Kentucky's most famous natives—Abraham Lincoln—whose inspiration for the Emancipation Proclamation came from these shores and talk with the sculptor who created it.  Warm up for the concert by visiting the Steamer Belle of Louisville, a national historic monument, for dancing and socializing. a night of legends, a night to remember. 

Tuesday, July 27

 7:00 am - 5:00 pm


 7:00 am - 8:45 am

Connecting Policy and Data to Answer Critical Policy Questions
Joint with NCSL Human Services and Welfare Committee
(Breakfast is sponsored by Data Quality Campaign)

As states grapple with pressing policy issues, they also are working to meet ARRA requirements to build education data systems that track students through the P-20 system and into the workforce.  Hear experts and state legislators discuss several of the most pressing policy issues and the legislative role in building data systems to inform those policies. 


  • Senator Terri Bonoff, Minnesota
  • Representative Rich Crandall, Arizona
  • Representative Mark Maddox, Tennessee
  • Paige Kowalski, Data Quality Campaign, Washington, D.C.
  • Bi Vuong, Data Quality Campaign, Washington, D.C.

 9:00 am - 10:15 am

An Education Success Story

Jeb Bush was governor of a state whose education system ranked at the bottom nationally, but the will to improve and the courageous leadership of the Florida Legislature changed so much in a decade.  Hear former Governor Bush discuss why Florida didn't abandon reform during tough times, but focused on the long-term benefits of providing quality education to every student in the state and reversed a generation of decline in public schools.


  • Senator Richard Moore, Massachusetts
    NCSL President-Elect


  • Jeb Bush, Former Governor of Florida

10:30 am - 12:00 pm

A New Path for Education Policy

Learn what NCSL's bipartisan Task Force on Federal Education Policy recommends for a coherent, effective and efficient use of limited federal resources.  Discuss how federal education policy and funding can better target disadvantaged students, focus on results rather than process, and support special needs programs.  Find out how the federal tax code might be changed to invest more in the infrastructure of public education.  NCSL Staff Contacts:  David Shreve and Robert Strange.

11:30 am - 1:30 pm

Exhibit Hall Lunch

1:00 pm - 2:30 pm

Preparing Millennials for Today's Workplace

Noted generational strategist, Richard Delano, focuses on understanding the millennial generation (1982-2005) and how schools can better serve them and our nation's future workforce needs.  Learn the key differences in generations and how events, social norms and other factors influence decision-making and learning in each.  Unlike generations before them, millennials are entering the workforce later, and thus need internships and job experience while they are still in school.  Learn how states and communities are engaging educators, employers and community leaders to connect high schools with colleges and workplaces to better prepare students for success.  NCSL Staff Contact:  Sunny Deyé


  • Senator Reginald Tate, Tennessee


  • Richard Delano, Social Marketing Services, New York 
  • Jay Steele, Metro Nashville Public Schools, Tennessee

 2:45 pm - 4:15 pm

 Recovering from the Great Recession—The Role of Community Colleges
Joint with NCSL Labor and Economic Development Committee

 In a post-recession era, retraining workers is critical to decreasing unemployment in the states.  Community colleges provide innovative, adaptable and real-time solutions by working closely with businesses and communities to meet state and regional workforce needs.  Learn how states are empasizing the role of community colleges in retraining workers, and how states can leverage federal and other money to supplement state money.  NCSL Staff Contact:  Brenda Bautsch


  • Senator Gary LeBeau, Connecticut


  • Senator Kenneth Winters, Kentucky
  • Vickie Choitz, Center for Law and Social Policy, Washington, D.C.
  • Michael Hansen, Michigan Community College Association, Lansing

 4:30 pm - 5:30 pm

Legislative Education Staff Network Business Meeting

Join legislative education staff colleagues from around the country for a short business meeting, a discussion on hot education topics, and recognition of this year's LESN recognition award recipient.  All legislative staff working on education issues are welcome to participate.  NCSL Staff Contact:  Sara Shelton


  • Paul Aguilar, Legislative Finance Committee, New Mexico
    Staff Chair, NCSL Standing Committee on Education
    NCSL Co-Chair, Legislative Education Staff Network 
Wednesday, July 28

 7:00 am - 8:00 am

Statehouse Ambassadors Breakfast

Statehouse Ambassadors and NCSL staff can share insights and experiences during this breakfast meeing.  The NCSL Statehouse Ambassadors are legislative staff who are in-state field representatives for NCSL.  The program is designed to energize and sustain legislative participation in NCSL and strengthen the organization's role as an extension of state legislatures.

 7:00 am - 9:00 am

Continental Breakfast

8:00 am - 2:00 pm


9:35 am - 11:00 am

America's Take

Pollsters Peter Hart and Neil Newhouse have different political leanings but they both have a take on how Americans view the economy, the current direction of the country and how today's politics will play out in November.  Hear Hart, a Democrat whose client list includes the Clintons and Kennedys, and Newhouse, a Republican recently named "Pollster of the Year" for his work on Scott Brown's Massachusetts Senate campaign, dissect American' attidudes in this time of political turbulence. 


  • North Carolina House Speaker Joe Hackney
    NCSL Immediate Past President


  • Peter Hart
  • Neil Newhouse


11:00 am -12:30 pm 

Business Meeting

11:15 am - 12:30 pm

Salute to Legislative Staff

Just as strong states make a strong nation, strong legislative staffs make strong legislatures.  Come celebrate the contributions staff have made to their legislatures and to NCSL.  David Landis—state senator, college teacher and urban planner—will discuss the importance of legislative service as a career, particularly at a time of public distrust of government and the retirement of staff who have been part of the legislature's rise in stature over the years.  This year's LESN Recognition Award recipient, Helen James, Senior Legislative Attorney, Office of Legal Services, Tennessee will be honored.

12:30 pm - 2:00 pm 

Staff, Democratic Legislative Campaign Committee Luncheon
Republican Legislative Campaign Committee Luncheon
Legislative Staff Luncheon

2:15 pm - 3:45 pm

Legislative Staff University - Making Your Point Successfully

In an era of conflict and partisanship, communicating effectively and respectfully with those you supervise and those you serve is essential for success in legislative careers.  The spoken and written word has a lasting impact, and the legislative institution benefits when consideration, courtesy and decorum guide communication.  Listen to Anna Post with the Emily Post Instutute as she discusses techniques that work both on the chamber floor and in the office workplace.


  • Anna Post, Emily Post Institute, Vermont

6:00 pm - 10:00 pm

Race to the Finish Line at Churchill Downs

Experience the magic of Churchill Downs, the host of "the most exciting two minutes in sports."  You'll wander the paddock area where horses, jockey and trainers will be on hand.  You'll dine in Millionaire's Row and taste some of Kentucky's Master Bourbon Distillers' best offerings.  Have your picture taken under the historic twin spires.  The highlight of the evening will be live racing.  One can bet on the race with a $100 voucher, and the person who parlays it into the largest winnings will receive a 2011 Derby Box.  It's a night of champions!


Committee Officers

Chair: Representative Larry Bell, North Carolina
Vice Chairs: Senator John Goedde, Idaho
Senator Clark Jolley, Oklahoma
Senator John Vratil, Kansas
Representative Betty Komp, Oregon
Representative Joseph Mitchell, Alabama
Representative Phil Owens, South Carolina
Representative Emma Rous, New Hampshire
Immediate Past Chair: Delegate Nancy King, Maryland
Staff Chair: Paul Aguilar, New Mexico
Staff Vice Chairs: Paula Dominguez, Rhode Island
Bridget Godes, Iowa
Cheryl Reinhart, Arkansas
Immediate Past Staff Chair: Shirley Iorio, North Carolina
NCSL Staff: Michelle Exstrom/Yilan Shen, Denver
David Shreve/Robert Strange, DC