Cynthia McKinney on Education

Green Party nominee for President (Former Rep., D, GA-4)

Something wrong with $38B on education & $700B on defense

Pentagon spending is at around $700 billion, can you imagine? And K-12 education is at about $38 billion. There's something wrong with that. Obviously, we have to put money into education.

Having been born & raised in Georgia, we would always say, "Thank goodness for Alabama & Mississippi." Now children in other parts of the world are saying, "Thank goodness for the US." Our children must be equipped for competition with the rest of the world. We have to focus on education & lifelong learning

Source: 2008 Green Presidential Debate moderated by Cindy Sheehan Jan 13, 2008

No Child Left Behind aimed at dismantling public education

We need to focus on education, but not with "reforms" like No Child Left Behind that are basically aimed at dismantling public education. We need to instill pride and a desire to learn. We need free higher education for all. India's socialized economy provided free higher education. Now our jobs are being shipped to India.
Source: Interview with "Reconstruction Renaissance" Jan 8, 2008

Our public schools are in a serious state disrepair

America's schools are, on average, 42 years old; while nearly 25,000 public schools, almost 1/3 of all public school buildings, are in a serious state of disrepair. As a result, more than 15 million students learn in facilities that have substandard heating, ventilation, plumbing, and roofing systems. It is clear that Republican priorities do not include education for our children. Federal tax cuts for the wealthy and funding for the war come at the expense of education and our children.
Source: Campaign website, www.cynthiaforcongress.com, "Issues" Dec 20, 2007

No Child Left Behind is an unfunded mandate

In the years since President Bush signed the No Child Left Behind (NCLB) Act, none of his budgets has come close to meeting the level of funding authorized in the Act. The cumulative Administration budgets have fallen billions of dollars short of the amount authorized for funding.

Important federal programs, such as Title I, which supports additional math and reading instruction in high-poverty schools and special education, are currently underfunded. The result is a lack of resources in schools and classrooms across the country.

The bipartisan National Governors Association even voted unanimously to label Bush's No Child Left Behind Act an unfunded mandate. States and localities struggle to keep up with the new requirements. Bush's own No Child Left Behind Act called for every teacher to have obtained a state certificate or license to teach by 2005. President Bush's budget plan fails to include any dedicated resources to address the $127 billion backlog in school repairs.

Source: Campaign website, www.cynthiaforcongress.com, "Issues" Dec 20, 2007

Voted YES on $84 million in grants for Black and Hispanic colleges.

This vote is on a substitute bill (which means an amendment which replaces the entire text of the original bill). Voting YES means support for the key differences from the original bill: lowering student loan interest rates; $59 million for a new Predominantly Black Serving Institution program; $25 million for a new graduate Hispanic Serving Institution program; provide for year- round Pell grants; and repeal the Single Lender rule. The substitute's proponents say:
  • The original bill has some critical shortcomings. First and foremost, this substitute will cut the new Pell Grant fixed interest rate in half from 6.8% to 3.4%, to reduce college costs to those students most in need.
  • It would also establish a new predominantly black-serving institutions programs to boost college participation rates for low-income black students, and a new graduate Hispanic-serving institution program.
  • As we saw from 1995 to 2000, the questions employers were asking was not your race, not your ethnicity, not your religion, they wanted to know if you had the skills and talents to do the job. Most often today, those skills and that talent requires a higher education. A college education is going to have to become as common as a high school education.
    Reference: Reverse the Raid on Student Aid Act; Bill HR 609 Amendment 772 ; vote number 2006-080 on Mar 30, 2006

    Voted YES on requiring states to test students.

    No Child Left Behind Act of 2001: Vote to pass a bill that would authorize $22.8 billion in education funding, a 29 percent increase from fiscal 2001. The bill would require states to test students to track progress.
    Reference: Bill sponsored by Boehner R-OH; Bill HR 1 ; vote number 2001-145 on May 23, 2001

    Voted NO on allowing vouchers in DC schools.

    Vote to create a non-profit corporation to administer federally-funded vouchers for low-income children in the District of Columbia.
    Reference: Amendment introduced by Armey, R-TX; Bill HR 4380 ; vote number 1998-411 on Aug 6, 1998

    Voted NO on vouchers for private & parochial schools.

    Vote to pass a bill to allow states to use certain federal funds designated for elementary and secondary education to provide scholarships, or vouchers, to low-income families to send their children to private schools, including religious schools.
    Reference: Bill sponsored by Riggs, R-CA; Bill HR 2746 ; vote number 1997-569 on Nov 4, 1997

    Voted NO on giving federal aid only to schools allowing voluntary prayer.

    Motion to add language to the "Goals 2000: Educate America Act" to give federal aid only to schools allowing voluntary prayer.
    Bill HR 1804 ; vote number 1994-85 on Mar 23, 1994

    Supported funding for teacher training & other initiatives.

    McKinney adopted the Women's Caucus policy agenda:

    Source: Women's Caucus Agenda-106th Congress 99-WC7 on Jul 15, 1999

    Other candidates on Education: Cynthia McKinney on other issues:
    GOP: Sen.John McCain
    Democrat: Sen.Barack Obama
    Dem.V.P.: Sen.Joe Biden

    GOP V.P. Possibilities:
    Gov.Haley Barbour(MS)
    Gov.Charlie Crist(FL)
    Mayor Rudy Giuliani(NYC)
    Gov.Mike Huckabee(AR)
    Sen.Joe Lieberman(CT)
    Gov.Tim Pawlenty(MN)
    Gov.Mitt Romney(MA)
    Gov.Mark Sanford(SC)

    Third Parties:
    Constitution: Chuck Baldwin
    Libertarian: Rep.Bob Barr
    Libertarian: Sen.Mike Gravel
    Constitution: Amb.Alan Keyes
    Liberation: Gloria La Riva
    Green: Rep.Cynthia McKinney
    Socialist: Brian Moore
    Independent: Ralph Nader
    Libertarian: Rep.Ron Paul
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    Page last updated: Oct 01, 2008