The STEM Ed bill that would explicitly include CS in the definition of STEM will be on the House floor today on the “suspension” calendar, a status that allows the House to consider it in somewhat expedited fashion. This is reserved for non-controversial bills and limits debate on the bill to 40 minutes, doesn’t allow for amendments, and requires a 2/3 majority to pass. So it’s likely it will pass the House today. Whether it will go anywhere in the Senate isn’t known…

There are a total of 4 bills cobbled together from the ashes of FIRST that will be considered today:

HR 5031 — A bill to define STEM education to include computer science, and to support existing STEM education programs at the National Science Foundation.
HR 5035 — A bill to reauthorize the National Institute of Standards and Technology, and for other purposes.
HR 5056 — A bill to improve the efficiency of Federal research and development, and for other purposes.
HR 5029 — A bill to provide for the establishment of a body to identify and coordinate international science and technology cooperation that can strengthen the domestic science and technology enterprise and support United States foreign policy goals.

All are non-controversial. HR 5056 sounds ominous, given the committee’s recent efforts to “improve NSF accountability” in FIRST, but it’s just a bill calling on OSTP to put together a working group to study how to “harmonize, streamline, and eliminate duplicative Federal regulations and reporting requirements, and minimize the regulatory burden on US institutions of higher education performing federally funded research while maintaining accountability for Federal tax dollars.”

We’ll let you know how the vote turns out!

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