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Longtime Legislation Director Retires

  • Jeff Simmering, director of legislation at the Council of the Great City Schools, recently retired after 28 years of service.

    Simering was appointed to the post in 1994, after serving as the principal of a consulting firm that conducted government relations and provided programmatic and advisory services for school districts, and public and private entities. 

    Since then, Simmering has been actively involved in the development of federal education legislation, directing the legislative activities of the Council as well as working with the federal agencies and advising member school districts on the implementation of national legislation. His work in targeting federal aid to high-poverty schools has resulted in hundreds of billions of dollars in additional funding to the Great City Schools.

    Succeeding Simering will be Manish Naik, the Council’s manager of legislative services since 2005, who worked on both the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB) and the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) amendments to the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, as well as federal appropriations, child nutrition, school construction, and education technology. He started as a legislative specialist with the Council in 1999.

    “Jeff Simering has voiced the concerns and needs of the nation’s urban public schools in hundreds of federal legislative proposals and has been the longest serving and most effective director of legislation of any education organization in the nation,” says the Council’s executive director, Ray Hart. “We will miss him profoundly, but we know that we are in excellent hands with Manish Naik, who has expertly managed legislative operations for the Council for more than 20 years.”