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Issue Position: Education

Issue Position

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* Understanding that America has to out-educate the rest of the world to be competitive in the global economy, President Obama has made education a national priority.

* President Obama has worked to raise K-12 standards, invest in teachers, and turn around low-performing schools so that children are prepared for college and careers.

* President Obama has doubled our investment in scholarships and financial aid so that students from working- and middle-class families can access and complete the college education they need to get the good jobs of the future.

* The Obama administration fought for funding to save the jobs of hundreds of thousands of educators across the country.

Post 9/11 G.I. Bill

Fact: President Obama signed into law an update to the post-9/11 G.I. Bill, which extends more benefits to National Guard members who performed active service and allows for education benefits to be transferred to family members.

Supporting Teachers and Students

* The Obama administration fought for funding to save the jobs of hundreds of thousands of educators across the country. The Recovery Act saved or created nearly 300,000 education jobs, and in 2010 President Obama helped school districts prevent 161,000 teacher and school staff layoffs.

* The American Jobs Act will more than offset projected teacher layoffs, providing support for nearly 400,000 education jobs--enough for states to avoid harmful layoffs and rehire tens of thousands of teachers who lost their jobs over the past three years.

Reforming No Child Left Behind

To support community efforts to improve schools, President Obama is offering states relief from No Child Left Behind mandates so that they have the flexibility to use local solutions to help improve schools.

Race to the Top: Partnering with States to Raise Standards

* The administration implemented the Race to the Top program, which rewards states for making tough reforms--raising standards, helping teachers improve, and turning around struggling schools.

* Since 2010, the administration has awarded Race to the Top grants to 11 states and the District of Columbia--helping 13.6 million students and 980,000 teachers in 25,000 schools.

Community Colleges

Fact: President Obama is investing $2 billion in competitive grants to reform community colleges, raising completion rates and creating new programs tied to workforce needs.

Educating for Our Future: Student Loans and Pell Grants

See how the President's reforms will help millions of Americans with student loan debt.

* President Obama made college more affordable by doubling funding for Pell Grants, increasing the number of recipients from 6 million in 2008 to 9 million in 2011. This was achieved in part by ending billions of dollars in federal subsidies to banks acting as middlemen in the college loan program.

* The President signed a new law that caps the maximum amount of monthly student loan repayment at 10 percent of income above a basic living allowance for certain borrowers. The law also allows remaining debt to be forgiven after 20 years instead of 25 for responsible borrowers.

* Teachers, nurses, and members of the armed forces will have their student loans forgiven after 10 years if they make repayments on time.

* A new $2,500 American Opportunity tax credit for tuition expenses has helped an estimated 9.4 million college students and their families in 2011.


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