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Congressman Brad Schneider

Representing the 10th District of Illinois

Education

Education is the engine of innovation and technological advancement, providing us with the ability to compete in the 21st century global economy.

To ensure America’s long-term prosperity and security, all of our young people, regardless of their zip code, must have the opportunity for a high-quality, affordable education.  Only by enhancing our nation’s education opportunities will we maintain the best educated, most innovative and productive workforce in the world. 

With renewed emphasis on education, we can ensure that the next generation of invention, and the great breakthroughs in health care, energy and manufacturing are developed in this country. By investing in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) programs as well as liberal arts curricula, we can provide a skilled American workforce capable of performing 21st Century jobs.

We have a responsibility to ensure that all of our children graduate high school, college and career ready.  In an increasingly globalized world, our graduates will be competing for jobs not just with their neighbors, but with people from around the world.  We must insist that states set high standards and goals for student performance and success, and then establish a high-quality, meaningful assessment system.  

But education reform spans far beyond emphasizing science and math in college. Early education programs can help foster a love of learning from a young age, and the availability of arts and extracurricular activities will encourage more and more kids to stay in school and achieve these skills.

Right now, manufacturers in the Tenth District and across the country are concerned that an aging workforce and lack of qualified new applicants will hamper their future growth, which is why I introduced the AMERICA Work Act. The bipartisan legislation brings together our manufacturers and educators to train workers with the skills employers are looking for, energizing our economy and filling quality jobs that are available today.

We must lay the foundation for the success by investing in early childhood education. Early education programs help foster a love of learning from a young age, and are critical to providing our children with the strong start they need. Research shows that students who are provided with early education are more likely to read and do math at grade level, graduate from high school and demonstrate improved academic achievement. 

Working to Keep Student Loan Rates Low

Congressman Schneider fought to keep student loan rates low as they threatened to double for students across the country. Congressman Schneider urged both sides to come together to keep rates affordable and allow more Americans to pursue higher education. He supported the bipartisan compromise to undo the rate hike and provide students and families with the ability to plan for the future. You can read Congressman Schneider’s statement on the agreement here.

Expanding Access to Early Education

When Congressman Schneider visited a Head Start facility in Waukegan, he saw firsthand the positive effects of early-education programs. Because of his commitment to improving early education, Congressman Schneider cosponsored the Strong Start for America’s Future Act, which would offer preschool for all 4-year-olds who are from families at or below 200 percent of the federal poverty limit. It also strengthens existing educational opportunities across the birth-to-age-5 continuum.

Increasing Community Engagement and Educational Achievement in Struggling Schools

When families and communities are involved in education, a student’s learning experience tends to improve. This is the principle behind the Developing Innovative Partnerships and Learning Opportunities that Motivate Achievement (DIPLOMA) Act. The bill, which Congressman Schneider cosponsored, promotes community and family engagement to improve educational achievement in disadvantaged or underserved areas. You can read more about Congressman Schneider’s support for the DIPLOMA Act here.

Partnering with Community Colleges for Career Training

With high-quality community colleges like College of Lake County and Oakton Community College in the Tenth District, Congressman Schneider strongly supports partnering industry and government with higher education institutions to enhance career training. Congressman Schneider cosponsored the Community College to Career Fund Act to create grants for community colleges to partner with state and local government, workforce investment boards and industry. You can read more about Congressman Schneider’s support for the Community College to Career Fund Act here.

Recognizing Excellence and Innovation in STEM Education

Congressman Schneider joined Secretary of Education Arne Duncan to tour Wheeling High School’s nanotechnology lab and highlight its excellent STEM education and industry partnerships. You can read more about Congressman Schneider’s tour of the nanotechnology lab here.

Congressman Schneider also sat down with students, faculty and industry representatives at the Wheeling High School Manufacturing and Engineering Program to discuss STEM education. You can read more about this conversation in Congressman Schneider’s blog post “Building a Highly Skilled Workforce.”

Promoting Bipartisan Education Policy

Congressman Schneider joined his colleagues to send a letter to the Chairman and Ranking Member of the House Education and Workforce Committee asking them to pursue reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act in a bipartisan manner. You can read the letter here.

Helping Teachers Who Help Their Students

Congressman Schneider cosponsored the Teacher Tax Deduction Enhancement Act to expand a tax credit for teachers who use money out of their own pockets to buy classroom supplies for their students. You can read more about the bill here

More on Education

Aug 1, 2014 Press Release

The New Democrat Coalition announced that Rep. Suzan DelBene (D-WA), Rep. Elizabeth Esty (D-CT), Rep. Annie Kuster (D-NH), and Rep. Brad Schneider (D-IL) will lead its new working group on job training and workforce development issues – the 21st Century Job Skills Working Group.

Jul 10, 2014 Press Release

The U.S. House passed the bipartisan Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act, which included key elements of U.S. Congressman Brad Schneider’s (IL-10) AMERICA Works Act and LEARN Act. The bill now goes to the President for his signature.

May 21, 2014 In The News

Seven borrowers who had been paying their Sallie Mae student loans on time for years were unexpectedly threatened with asset seizures after a Sallie Mae contractor demanded they immediately repay tens of thousands of dollars simply because a family member had died.

Apr 17, 2014 In The News

Since beginning his first term as a congressman in 2013, U.S. Rep. Brad Schneider said he has appreciated more than ever the value of libraries as he prepares for hearings, committee meetings and formal votes on everything from domestic issues to overseas conflicts.

The congressman praised the role of libraries in front of about 65 students, faculty, staff and administrators who packed classrooms T326-328 on the Grayslake campus April 16. Schneider’s appearance was designed to heighten awareness of National Library Week, April 13 to 19.

Apr 10, 2014 Press Release

Washington, D.C. - Today, U.S. Representatives Bill Foster (IL-11), Tammy Duckworth (IL-08) and Brad Schneider (IL-10) voted against the Republican budget proposal introduced by Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (WI-01). They released the following statements:

Apr 1, 2014 Press Release

U.S. Congressman Brad Schneider (IL-10), a member of the House Small Business Committee, released the following statement on the budget proposal introduced today by Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (WI-01).

“Budgets are about priorities, and this budget simply flies in the face of our core values—it hurts our middle class, our students and our seniors.

“Instead of moving our country forward and focusing on ways to grow the economy, this budget guts education funding, ends the Medicare guarantee and puts the burden on those who can afford it the least.

Mar 25, 2014 Press Release

U.S. Congressman Brad Schneider (IL-10) laid out some of his key budget priorities, including sensible investments in infrastructure and workforce training, during his testimony today before the House Committee on the Budget. 

Laying out what he believes are the keys to boosting manufacturing and growing the economy, Rep. Schneider urged investments in modern infrastructure, public-private partnerships aimed at closing the skills gap and increasing exports from domestic manufacturers.

Mar 19, 2014 In The News

U.S. Rep. Brad Schneider will speak at Oakton Community College’s Manufacturing Expo on Thursday.

The event puts students into contact with local manufacturers so they can learn about career opportunities in those industries. The expo will provide students, educators and businesses a place to develop partnerships.

Mar 18, 2014 Press Release

U.S. Congressman Brad Schneider (IL-10) will speak at Oakton Community College’s Manufacturing Expo on Thursday, March 20 at 11AM (CDT).

The Manufacturing Expo brings students to local manufacturers to learn firsthand about career opportunities in the industry. The Expo also provides students, educators and business a forum to develop partnerships, a key focus of legislation Rep. Schneider introduced as one of his first acts in Congress, the AMERICA Works Act (HR 497).