Education Talking Points for Project Blue Fence 2004

Kerry/Edwards

Proposes "College Opportunity Tax Credit" to make four years of college possible for all Americans. He will provide a credit for each year of college on the first $4,000 paid in tuition.

His "Service for College" initiative will offer Americans the chance to earn the equivalent of their state's four-year public college tuition in exchange for exactly two years of service.

As part of his "State Tax Relief and Education Fund", Kerry will help states with $50 billion to stop the education cuts and tuition increases across the country which resulted from Bush's economic policies.

John Kerry will defend Title IX and work to expand college opportunities for women.

He will work to fully fund the Head Start program, so that every 3 and 4 year old in poverty can receive the cognitive, social/emotional, health, and parent education services needed.

Proposes a "National Education Trust Fund" to make sure that the federal government fully funds our education priorities and to make sure that schools can meet high standards. The fund will require an increase in our annual investment in education from its current level of $23.8 billion to about $35 billion by 2008 to meet the full commitment of No Child Left Behind.

Kerry will ensure that all 7 million "latch key children" have a safe place to go after school that will allow them to improve their academic performance and also provide them with opportunities to develop other skills and interests, such as music and the arts. Kerry will fully fund the successful 21st Century Community Learning Center Program. He will also offer a new After-School Tax Credit to help parents of millions of children afford after-school programs.

The Trust Fund will assure the federal government meets its full commitment so that children with special needs get the education they deserve and that funding for special education doesn't come at the expense of other critical education programs.

Bush/Cheney

Public schools were shortchanged by $6 billion this year.

Head Start currently reaches only one third of eligible children.

The Bush Administration proposes changes to the policies of Title IX which would undercut athletic opportunities and scholarship dollars for women and girls as well as other Title IX protections.

Bush committed to resources and reforms in No Child Left Behind, but has fallen short by $27 billion.

Due to the economic policies of the Bush Administration, schools have been forced to discontinue after-school programs in many states. More than 28 million school-aged children have parents who work outside the home.

Currently, the federal government only provides half of the money that it promised to states and localities to educate children with special needs.

- illinoisforkerry.com -