[library-media] Fwd: [AASLAFFILS:584] ESEA: Action needed NOW!

Dennis Morgan DMorgan@mury.k12.ut.us
Wed, 10 Oct 2001 09:20:40 -0600

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"You only need to read on the days you eat"
Dennis Morgan

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Date: Wed, 10 Oct 2001 08:32:10 -0500
From: "Steven Hofmann" <shofmann@ala.org>
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Subject: [AASLAFFILS:584] ESEA: Action needed NOW!
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FROM:  Sandy Schuckett, Co-Chair, AASL Legislation Committee

TO:  AASL and AASL Affiliate Members

RE:  ESEA Reauthorization -- IMPORTANT

The House-Senate Conference Committee continues to debate on HR1, the ESEA Reauthorization Bill.  Many sections of the bill have already been decided, but the President's "Reading First" initiative section is still being discussed.  The Senate version includes the school library resource language in the Reed Amendment, which was co-sponsored by Sens. Jack Reed (D-RI) and Thad Cochran (R-MS).  This section would authorize funds for school library materials, provide training for school library media specialists, and allow school libraries to be open after school.  It is an essential, actually critical addition to the "Reading First" initiative.

We know that students need a wide variety of reading materials to begin the process of becoming life-long learners.  We also know that research has shown that stronger school library programs with more materials and better trained professionals = higher student achievement.

Senators Ted Kennedy (D-MA) and Susan Collins (R-ME) have stated that the "Reading First" initiative must include Jack Reed's language and provisions. However, many other Republicans are not in favor of anything that will cost more money.


It is especially important that Republican members of the Conference Committee be contacted and urged to include the Reed amendment in HR1. Check the ALA Washington Office web site at www.ala.org/washoff for a list of the conferees, and if your U.S. Representative is on this list, write to him/her TODAY!!

If your Representative is NOT a one of the conferees, write to him/her anyway, and ask him/her to communicate the message to the conferees.

You can find background material and talking points on the ALA web site at www.ala.org/washoff/esea.html.  You may also access sample letters on that site.

THE TIME IS NOW.  This is a small window of opportunity, and we have to grab it.  It is essential, it is critical, and it MUST happen.

Sandy Schuckett, VP/Legislation
California School Library Association
2312 Claremont Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 90027