Press Release ● Education
For Immediate Release: 
April 10, 2015
Contact Info: 

Mariel Saez 202-225-3130

WASHINGTON, DC – House Democratic Whip Steny H. Hoyer (MD) released the following statement today on the fiftieth anniversary of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, which was signed into law by President Lyndon B. Johnson on April 11, 1965: 

“Tomorrow marks the fiftieth anniversary of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA), which was signed by President Lyndon B. Johnson to give all children – no matter their background – access to a quality education.  A critical component of the War on Poverty, President Johnson recognized the power of public education to lift children out of poverty and give them opportunities that once seemed out of reach.  As he said when signing ESEA into law, ‘by passing this bill, we bridge the gap between helplessness and hope.’

“As we mark this anniversary, we should expand our support for elementary and secondary education so that all Americans are prepared for higher education or careers.  That’s why I was disappointed when House Republicans put forward a partisan reauthorization of ESEA earlier this year that would undermine federal investment in improving schools.  I am encouraged that Chairman Lamar Alexander and Ranking Member Patty Murray of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee were able to agree on a bipartisan proposal that will now be considered by the Senate.  We ought to be working together, Democrats and Republicans, House and Senate, to find common ground and reauthorize this bill in the spirit of the original goals of ESEA as signed by President Johnson.”