Tuesday, April 29, 2008

No Child Left Behind: $25 billion just isn't enough

We are debating HR268 in Education Committee this morning. I assume it will be on the floor today for passage. It is a non-binding resolution calling on Congress to reform the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB). Why? Well, because they aren't spending enough!

We created the Federal Department of Education in 1979 as a cabinet level function. Today, we spend over $56 billion in federal tax dollars on public education. The NCLB act uses about $25 billion of that. Anyone who gives it a fair hearing would be hard pressed to justify the dollars spent at the federal level. Where is the return on the investment?

Now, Dem leaders in the state House are pushing a resolution which includes this language:
Whereas, NCLB needs to be amended in a number of areas to fulfill its admirable goal. First, while schools are being identified for failing to meet standards, Congress has not met its promises for funding levels to allow schools to correct identified inadequacies. Further, a whole range of initiatives that expand early education, before- and after-school programs, summer school options, and family support, would enhance the ability of our schools to educate all of our children to their full potential...

I support the development of quality public education. The education lobby always brands me as anti-education because I demand more quality and accountability with the tax dollars we spend on public education. There are many in government who talk little about accountability, but ALWAYS push for more funding. It is high time we as taxpayers demand more for our money in the public education realm.

No comments: