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Public Statements

School Districts Financially Strapped

Floor Speech

Location: Washington, DC

Mr. WITTMAN. Mr. Speaker, recently during my district work period, I met with officials from Matthews County Public Schools. Matthews County is representative of many of the communities in my district and around the Commonwealth that are dealing with difficult budget challenges.

The Matthews County school system is projected to lose $1.2 million in the 2010-2011 budget year. For a small school district, this is a significant number. Unfortunately, in these cases, usually the only place left to trim the budget is personnel. This would mean less services and programs for children.

Over the years, the Federal Government has expanded its involvement in funding and has added requirements on public education. In some cases, Federal requirements leave school districts strapped for funding. The Federal requirements and mandates are not joined with Federal assistance. In my district, I have formed an Education Advisory Council to look at these tough issues.

Congress should carefully review these important programs and implement commonsense reforms to ensure that we are helping, not hurting, the education of our children. There are many counties like Matthews across Virginia's First Congressional District. We must be mindful of the impacts we have on their budgets.

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