Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro (CT-3) led a panel discussion today on the detrimental impact Congressman Paul Ryan's budget proposal would have on education in America. According to estimates, the Ryan Budget would slash federal education funding by an astounding 20 percent.
Joined by West Haven Mayor John Picard, West Haven High School Principal Pamela Gardner, and other officials, parents, students and teachers in West Haven, DeLauro talked about the need for the federal government to continue to support K-12 education and the opportunities it gives our children to succeed. She is the senior Democrat on the subcommittee responsible for funding the Department of Education.
"In this tough economy, middle-class and working families are struggling to get by and to do better. But without broad access to a good education, there is no middle class. The compact that allows hard work to pay off and allows future generations to do better is broken. We must keep the American Dream alive and ensure future generations have access to the solid, middle-class jobs that make this country thrive.
"Decreased education funding has a real impact on students. For our country to remain economically competitive, we need an educated workforce with the skills and knowledge required to compete in the 21st century. This is not the time to slash federal education funding. We cannot try to balance the budget on the backs of low-income students, Head Start and teachers."
Cutting our federal education budget by such a substantial amount would force already cash-strapped states and municipalities to shoulder even more of the burden, forcing increases on property taxes and further hurting the pocketbooks of middle-class and working families, resulting in further cuts to education services and programs.
In contrast, DeLauro was instrumental in securing the single largest investment in college affordability in our nation's history, expanding the Head Start program and funding for students with disabilities.