Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Smith Encourages Congress To Find Collaborative Solutions to Education Challenges

Fayette County Board of Education member Terri Smith joined more than 800 school board and state school boards association leaders to ask Congress to support public school students as they consider the reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) this year.

Smith took part in the National School Boards Association’s (NSBA) 38th annual Federal Relations Network Conference February 6-8 in Washington, DC. She is a participant in NSBA’s Federal Relations Network, a national grassroots legislative effort that urges members of Congress to make K-12 education a top priority.

Once Congress reauthorizes ESEA, local school boards will be responsible for implementing the federal policies, so it is important that school board leaders are involved in the legislative process.

School funding also remains a major concern for local districts. School board leaders are requesting that Congress help ensure that public education is adequately funded and discontinue the practice of passing education legislation without providing the necessary funding for local implementation.

“To increase student success, public officials on the local, state, and federal level must work together to provide proper funding and support for local districts,” Smith says.

In addition, some members of Congress are pushing for alternatives to local school governance. School board leaders strongly believe schools are best governed by the communities they serve.

“Local governance and decision-making are essential to advancing public education and student achievement,” Smith adds.

Founded in 1940, NSBA is a not-for-profit organization representing state associations of school boards and their more than 90,000 local school board members throughout the U.S. Working with and through state associations, NSBA advocates for equity and excellence in public education through school board leadership.

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