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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 26, 2001

Gov. Ryan Talks Education at White House, Joins President in Call for Increased Investment and Accountability

WASHINGTON, D.C. -- Governor George H. Ryan emphasized continued investment in education and increased accountability with annual testing for students in White House meetings today with President Bush and senior administration officials.

"They grow up fast, so we need to know now if our kids can read in third grade, we need to know now if they are ready for high school," said Governor Ryan. "As it is, this new program will take time to develop -- so, as far as I am concerned we have no time to lose."

Last Wednesday in his budget address, Governor Ryan announced for the third straight year that his administration is committing 51 percent of all new revenue to education. This represents $460 million new dollars this year for a total education investment of nearly $9 billion.

Governor Ryan commended President Bush for calling for increased accountability with increased testing for students beginning in the third grade. In his radio address this past weekend, President Bush said that education would get the biggest percentage increase in any department in the federal government. In return for increased federal dollars to the states, his plan will give states more freedom to decide what works and expect more in return by demanding accountability.

"President Bush is showing vision and leadership on education," Governor Ryan said. "He is providing more resources for the states to help teachers, students and parents and in return, setting up more accountability so that we can learn what is working for our children."

Governor Ryan took part in White House meetings today as part of the National Governor's Association winter meeting being held in the nation's capital. The Governor met with Education Secretary Rodney Paige as well as with other cabinet and senior administration officials.



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