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Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Mike Enzi, R-Wyo., said he is pleased to be working with President George W. Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney to reform education to make sure the federal education framework is "serving the student, not the system."

President Bush sent a multi-billion education proposal to Capitol Hill today. The proposal included specific initiatives the President wants enacted. Actual drafting of legislation that can be voted on in the Senate will start in the Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee (HELP) in the form of reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act.

Enzi, a four-year veteran of the HELP Committee, said Bush and Cheney provided committee members with a "solid framework on which to build a bipartisan education reform bill."

Enzi made the following statement regarding the education plan and pointed to some areas that could particularly benefit Wyoming.

"Today, President Bush delivered to Congress his comprehensive education reform proposal with the simple but powerful goal to leave no child behind. He is delivering on his promise and the clear mandate of the people to reshape the federal mission on education around serving children, not the system.

"The proposal is full of new ideas and commitments to states that are already heavily invested in improving student achievement, increasing parental involvement and supporting local decision-making on education. Wyoming was the first state to complete and submit its education standards and has been in the forefront of developing student assessments to evaluate kids' success in meeting those standards. President Bush has proposed added technical assistance in helping schools help their students achieve. Increased funding for schools that do achieve will be provided. Such a commitment is critical to Wyoming, where small districts and a rural infrastructure have stretched education resources thin.

"President Bush has also committed to a significant, meaningful increase in funding for the Impact Aid program, which is intended to help cover the cost of educating children in districts where a federal military presence or Native American reservation depletes the tax base. The President's proposal will improve that per pupil investment and, I hope, funding for school construction in impacted districts. Similarly, a new capital construction fund would be established for schools funded under the Bureau of Indian Affairs.

"I also believe Wyoming will see tremendous benefit from the President's proposal to streamline the administrative requirements of existing education technology programs. Schools could submit one application and would be allowed the flexibility to pool funds towards everything from purchasing hardware and software, modifying classrooms to make them technology ready and training personnel so that technology can truly be part of the formula for improving achievement."



10 Central Pillars of the Bush-Cheney Education Improvement Plan

1. Granting freedom for schools, school districts, and states

2. Strengthening accountability for improving student achievement

3. Improving failing schools

4. Giving options to students in failing or persistently dangerous schools

5. Rewarding success and sanctioning failure

6. Improving teacher quality

7. Making schools safe

8. Encouraging reading success

9. Strengthening math and science education

10. Increasing funds to schools for technology