President Clinton Highlights Results of Administration's Investment In America's Education Priorities
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|                     AMERICA'S EDUCATION PRIORITIES                      |
|                           September 12, 2000                            |
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Today,  President  Clinton will release a White House report on educational
progress,  which highlights the progress America's students are making, and
will  call  on  Congress  to  continue  to  make  critical  investments  in
education.   The  President  will also announce the award of $46 million in
new  GEAR  UP grants to help disadvantaged students prepare for college and
will  release a letter from 104 college presidents calling for full funding
for GEAR UP.  When President Clinton and Vice President Gore took office in
1992,  they  embarked  on a strategy of improving education by setting high
standards  for  all  students,  insisting on accountability for results and
investing  in  what  works to help students succeed.  Since that time, this
Administration   has  doubled  the  federal  investment  in  education  and
training,  while  maintaining  a  balanced budget and paying down the debt.
These  investments  have  resulted  in  more  high  quality teachers in our
children's  classrooms,  more  after  school and summer school programs and
more financial assistance available for students to attend college.

THEN  AND  NOW:   INVESTMENT  AND  PROGRESS.   The  report  released by the
President  today  confirms  what research tells us - money matters if it is
invested in the right things.  More importantly, the report underscores the
payoffs  from the Clinton-Gore commitment to investing more in our schools,
while  also demanding more from them.  President Clinton and Vice President
Gore  will continue to fight for more than just higher funding levels, they
will  also insist that money be spent on America's priorities, like smaller
classes,  high  quality  teachers,  more  after  school programs and modern
school buildings.  The report shows that:
?    Math SAT scores are at a thirty-year high.  The average SAT math score
has gone from 501 in 1992 to 514 in 2000, and the average verbal score has
gone from 500 to 505;
?    Since 1992, reading and math scores on the National Assessment of
Educational Progress (NAEP) have increased for fourth, eighth, and twelfth
graders, including those students in high poverty areas;
?    The achievement gap between low-income and minority students and their
peers has decreased;
?    More students are taking a rigorous high school curriculum and
enrolling in higher education; and
?    Nearly all of the nation's highest poverty schools receive Title I
funds compared to fewer than 80 percent before 1992.

ACADEMIC   SUPPORT   FOR   AT-RISK   CHILDREN.   With  President  Clinton's
leadership,   GEAR  UP,  or  Gaining  Early  Awareness  and  Readiness  for
Undergraduate  Programs,  was  proposed  and  enacted  in  1998  with broad
bipartisan  support.   Today  President Clinton will release 80 new GEAR UP
grants  totaling  $46  million.    This  year, GEAR UP will promote college
opportunities  for  more  than 700,000 at-risk children. The President will
also  release a letter from 104 college and university presidents endorsing
his  request  for  $325  million  for  GEAR  UP, as well as other important
college  programs  including  the TRIO programs for disadvantaged students.
According  to  the  presidents,  without full funding for GEAR UP, "tens of
thousands  of  needy  students  will  be denied the opportunity to gain the
skills and information essential for going to college."

?    GEAR UP supports partnerships of schools, colleges and universities,
and community organizations to strengthen academics and tutoring, mentor
students, share college information, and provide college scholarships.  It
also funds state efforts to promote college awareness and provide
scholarships for needy students.

?    For the second year in a row, interest in GEAR UP far exceeded
available funding, allowing the Department of Education to fund only one
application in four.  President Clinton has requested $325 million for GEAR
UP in FY 2001 to help meet the obvious need, but Congress plans to freeze
it at $200 million, denying aid for up to 600,000 students.

February,  the  Clinton-Gore  Administration  sent  Congress a balanced and
fiscally  responsible  budget  that  makes  investments  in  key  education
initiatives  such  as  modernizing 6,000 schools and repairing 25,000 more,
meeting  our  commitment  to  hire 100,000 quality teachers to reduce class
sizes,  improving  teacher  quality,  increasing  accountability by turning
around  failing  schools, and expanding after school opportunities.  Today,
the  President will renew his call on Congress to fully enact his education
budget  proposals  by  investing  more  in our schools, demanding more from
them, and making other vital investments to ensure our children receive the
high-quality education they deserve.

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