MOUNT VERNON – Margie Bennett, president of the Mount Vernon City Schools Board of Education and vice president of the Knox County Career Center board, attended the 40th annual National School Boards Association Federal Relations Network Conference in Washington, D.C., Jan. 27-28.
“Representing the Mount Vernon Schools and the Knox County Career Center and lobbying Congress provide us with the opportunity to help shape federal education policy, with the ultimate goal of making public education a top priority of the federal government,” stated Bennett.
Commenting further, Bennett said, “I especially appreciated hearing U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan speak during the conference, having the opportunity to meet with Ohio Sen. Sherrod Brown and to personally interact with Congressional House Rep. Bob Gibbs’ education aide Emily Tully. I count it a privilege and an honor to represent the children of Knox County.”
Because local school boards are responsible for implementing federal policies, members of Congress were urged to:
•Develop a balanced budget that protects education investments, in lieu of the across-the-board cuts, also called sequestration, which are scheduled to occur in March.
•Reauthorize the Elementary and Secondary Education Act after listening to school leaders’ recommendations and concerns.
•Ensure adequate funding for education programs, including full funding for mandates such as the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act and Title I.
•Provide federal funding to strengthen school security.
School board leaders also asked that Congress accelerate investments in public education that support local efforts to continue to raise student achievement.