May 7, 2021 - Cogswell-Macy Act Moved to Committee

On March 17, 2021 the Cogswell-Macy Act was introduced in both the U.S. House and Senate and has now moved to committees. This act would:
      • Require states to identify and evaluate children who are visually and hearing impaired so that appropriate services can be delivered to each student, and report instances when they fall short
      • Help parents and educators stay informed and up-to-date through written policy guidance released regularly from the Department of Education
      • Encourage states to plan for and commit to specialized instruction for all deaf, hard of hearing, blind, visually impaired, and deaf-blind students, provided by trained personnel
      • Establish the Anne Sullivan Macy Center of Vision Loss and Educational Excellence within the Department of Education to function as a national resource to better support students with visual disabilities
Statue of Alice Cogswell in Hartford, CT.
Statue of Alice Cogswell in Hartford, CT.

This bill is named after Alice Cogswell, the first deaf student that was formally educated in the United States, and Anne Sullivan Macy, Helen Keller’s famous teacher. This bipartisan legislation is intended to strengthen the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) to ensure that visual and hearing-impaired students receive the best education possible.

If you are unfamiliar with this legislation, we urge you to learn more and to share your opinions with your legislative representatives. Go to to learn more about this act and follow its progress.

Sponsors and co-sponsors of the bill include:

U.S. Representatives Matt Cartwright (D-PA-08) and David McKinley (R-WV-01), and U.S. Senators Edward J. Markey (D-MA) and Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV) . Co-sponsors include: Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA-01), Gwen Moore (D-WI-04), Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-D.C.), Alcee Hastings (D-FL-20), Jan Schakowsky (D-IL-09), Greg Stanton (D-AZ-09), Seth Moulton (D-MA-06), Kathleen Rice (D-NY-04), Grace Napolitano (D-CA-32), Tim Ryan (D-OH-13), Mike Doyle (D-PA-18), Dwight Evans (D-PA-03), Adam Schiff (D-CA-28), Mark Takano (D-CA-41), Eric Swalwell (D-CA-15) and Del. Michael F.Q. San Nicolas (D-Guam). Senators Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) and Mike Braun (R-IN) are also co-sponsors of the legislation in the Senate.