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Bonamici Visits Tigard’s Durham Elementary School; Calls on Budget Negotiators to Reverse Education Cuts

October 31, 2013
Press Release

Beaverton, Ore.— Congresswoman Suzanne Bonamici (D-OR) today called on members of the House and Senate Budget Conference Committee to reverse cuts to federal education funding caused by the “sequestration” provisions of the Budget Control Act. Bonamici emphasized her disapproval with the cuts during a visit to Tigard’s Durham Elementary School, which receives federal Title I funding to lower class sizes and provide reading interventions for students in need of extra support. Title I funding goes to schools with a high percentage of low-income students.

“It is wrong to cut funding for reading programs when schools are already struggling with limited resources,” said Congresswoman Bonamici. “Last year Durham was one of the highest achieving Title I schools in Oregon. Their programs are working. We should be encouraging and supporting the efforts of teachers and administrators at this school and in schools across Oregon. One of my top priorities in the current budget negotiations is to repeal the education cuts triggered by sequestration.”

Later this week, Bonamici and many of her House colleagues will send a letter urging budget conferees to reverse the across-the-board cuts known as “sequestration.” According to the National Education Association, Oregon’s federal education funding was cut by $85 billion for Fiscal Year 2013 as a result of these indiscriminate cuts.

“A five percent cut may not seem like much, but in light of a 20 percent cut in federal funding that has occurred since 2002, it’s significant,” said Bonamici. “Funding isn’t the only issue we need to address in our schools, but the more we cut, the harder it is for teachers to do their job. Durham is a highly successful school; they’ve been doing more with less for too long. We can’t continue to expect great results if we keep cutting budgets.”

According the Congressional Research Service, funding for Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA), which includes Title I, has been cut by more than 20 percent since No Child Left Behind took effect in 2002.