WASHINGTON, DC – Congressman Raúl M. Grijalva (D-AZ) released the following statement today after the House of Representatives voted 218 to 213 to approve H.R. 5, a Republican bill to reauthorize the Elementary and Secondary Education Act that cuts significantly from public education funding and erodes many of the law’s key provisions.
Under H.R. 5, funding for public education is frozen at FY2015 levels for the next three years. The bill allows states to redirect Title I funds away from schools with high concentrations of poverty and redirect them to low-poverty schools. H.R. 5 eliminates requirements that schools take action when students struggle to achieve at grade-level. The legislation allows students with disabilities to be taught to separate, lower standards and removes requirements that schools improve the education of English language learners each year.
“The provisions in H.R. 5 to weaken our public education system are politics at its most cynical; the cuts included are politics at its worst,” said Rep. Grijalva. “Instead of ensuring every student has the resources needed to succeed, this bill will actually allow for those resources to be siphoned away from underserved populations to better fund schools that are already well-funded. And instead of viewing failing students as a great challenge to overcome, this bill leaves them behind and absolves federal responsibility to ever help them succeed. The GOP isn’t just letting our students down – they’re intentionally working against them.”