This week, Creative Commons joined a group of 18 organizations to urge the Department of Education to implement the “Open Licensing Requirement for Direct Grant Programs” rule, which ensures that educational resources and other copyrightable works created with Department discretionary grant funds are openly licensed.
After more than a year of working its way through the federal rulemaking process, the rule was finalized on January 19th, then subjected to a blanket 60 day delay as the new administration took office, and was set to go into effect last week.
However, the Department recently announced an additional 60 day delay and requested comments from the community on the effective date.
The rule supports the creation of Open Educational Resources (OER), educational materials that are freely available to the public and can be downloaded, edited and shared to better serve all learners. The Federal Government currently invests billions of taxpayer dollars each year in programs that include the creation of educational, training, and instructional materials through grants, contracts, and other cooperative agreements.
The broader availability of these resources empowers schools — public, private and in the home — to make use of these resources, allows businesses to incorporate them into workforce training, helps entrepreneurs to build new enterprises around them, permits students to enrich themselves through lifelong learning, and more.
That’s why we were pleased to work with 17 other organizations – including the Association of American Educators, the Council of Chief State School Officers, and the Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition – to call for implementation of the rule without further delay.