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Zell Miller on Education


Voluntary prayer at school football games is ok

Q: What place do you think religion plays in politics today? Prayers in school and at football games are a big issue.

A: I support students voluntarily praying at football games or other school events, and I don’t believe the courts should interfere with such activities. While I do not believe government should impose religious beliefs on anyone, my Christian faith will guide my decision-making in office, just as it does other aspects of my life.

Source: The Macon (GA) Telegraph Oct 30, 2000

Make college tuition deductible

We must make sure that middle-class families prosper from our strong economy. That is why I support repealing the marriage penalty tax --- couples should not be penalized financially for getting married. I am also supporting measures to make it easier for families to send their children to college, including co-sponsoring a bill to allow families to deduct up to $12,000 a year in college tuition costs.
Source: The Macon (GA) Telegraph Oct 30, 2000

Lottery & high tech for pre-K thru college

Source: Press Release, “Classical Casettes” Jun 22, 1998

All children should have the opportunity to attend pre-K

We became the first state to offer pre-kindergarten, free of charge, to every four-year-old. Pre-K students are more likely to stay in school, achieve higher test scores, and graduate better prepared for the workforce. More than 185,000 Georgia children have benefited from pre-K. The pre-K program reflects my philosophy of education: every Georgia child should enter school ready to learn.
Source: State of the State Address, Georgia Jan 15, 1998

Good schools mean money for teachers, books, reading

If we want excellence in the classroom, we must compete for the best teachers. The largest expenditure in this budget is $275 million to provide the fourth consecutive pay raise to teachers. There is also $3.7 million for our teacher Pay for Performance program. I am proposing that we buy one million new books. This budget also contains close to $20 million to provide grants for reading programs for our children.
Source: Budget Address, Georgia Jan 13, 1998

Future depends on a better educated workforce

Governor Zell Miller said today Georgia’s future depends on a better educated workforce. Miller said, “Our future prosperity depends on education, and a higher level of education for everyone must be the standard. It must be a given.”

Governor Miller said his goal is to make sure Georgia’s public schools and technical institutes turn out that type of worker. “I believe that a strong education system, beginning with pre-kindergarten and reaching right up through college or technical institute, is the most important economic infrastructure a state can have,“ Governor Miller said.

”As we look to the 21st Century, we are faced with a critical choice, not only as individual citizens, but also as a state and a nation,“ Governor Miller said. ”That choice is between education and skills on the one hand, or low wages and a reduced standard of living on the other. Working together, wcan develop a strong workforce that has the education and training it will take for Georgia to prosper.“

Source: Press Release, “Workforce Education” Dec 11, 1996

$1B more for education

Governor Zell Miller today announced the final piece of a $1 billion additional investment in the education of Georgia’s children next year. Miller proposed a $259 million increase in spending for the 206,000-student University System of Georgia, which includes $95 million for new athletic and academic facility construction. Together with his previous budget announcements for the Departments of Education and Technical and Adult Education, Governor Miller has now proposed more than $1 billion in additional spending on education in FY 97.

“I am committed to expanding the educational opportunities of all Georgians, from the moment they enter my pre-kindergarten program,” Governor Miller said. “There is a direct correlation between our investment in education and business & industry’s investment.” As he did for public school teachers and technical college instructors, Miller today called for a 6% pay increase for faculty and staff of the University System, which will cost $65 million.

Source: Press Release, “Education Investment” Dec 19, 1995

More HOPE scholarships for college and potential teachers

    Governor Zell Miller today proposed expanding the HOPE scholarship program, giving even more college students, future teachers and those already teaching an opportunity to take advantage of the most innovative college scholarship program in the nation. “HOPE is not just a reward for hard work, it is an incentive to work hard,” Governor Miller said. “The message to Georgia’s students will be clearer than ever. You do your part, and HOPE will do its part.” The expansions are:
  1. Extend HOPE to college students who maintain a “B” average during their first two years of college, even if they did not graduate from high school with a “B” average. “Some students are late bloomers,” Miller said.
  2. Provide forgivable loans of $3,000 per year to students who aspire to be teachers in Georgia public schools.
  3. Provide HOPE for teachers to return to college to get an advanced degree in math, science, special education, foreign languages or counseling, [where] we have a teacher shortage.
    Source: Press Release, “Expand HOPE” Nov 22, 1994

    Supports teacher pay-for-performance

    Miller [will propose] establishing a pay-for-performance plan in two steps, beginning with a group plan to reward schools for overall performance. Later, an individual component which recognizes teachers who are outstanding will be implemented after the group plan has been evaluated. “Pay-for-performance for teachers is a high priority of mine, and [this proposal is] a giant first step for establishing a plan to reward teachers based on their performance in the classroom,” Governor Miller said.
    Source: Press Release, “Pay-for-performance” Jan 3, 1991

    Voted NO on funding student testing instead of private tutors.

    Vote to pass an amendment that would authorize $200 million to provide grants to help states develop assessment systems that describe student achievement. This amendment would replace an amendment by Jeffords, R-VT, which would allow parents of under-per
    Bill S1 ; vote number 2001-99 on May 10, 2001

    Voted NO on spending $448B of tax cut on education & debt reduction.

    Vote to reduce the size of the $1.6 trillion tax cut by $448 billion while increasing education spending by $250 billion and providing an increase of approximately $224 billion for debt reduction over 10 years.
    Bill H Con Res 83 ; vote number 2001-69 on Apr 4, 2001

    More foreign languages courses and exchange students.

    Miller sponsored a Resolution on international education policy

      Concurrent resolution expressing the sense of Congress that the United States should establish an international education policy to enhance national security, significantly further U.S. foreign policy and economic competitiveness, and promote mutual understanding and cooperation among nations. Includes among policy objectives:
    1. producing citizens with a high level of international experience;
    2. promoting greater diversity of locations, languages, and subjects involved in teaching, research, and study abroad;
    3. increasing participation in internships abroad;
    4. invigorating citizen and professional international exchange programs;
    5. supporting visas and employment policies that promote increased numbers of international students;
    6. encouraging programs that begin foreign language learning in the United States at an early age;
    7. promoting educational exchanges and research collaboration with American educational institutions abroad; and
    8. promoting partnerships among government, business, and educational institutions and organizations to provide adequate resources for implementing this policy.
    Source: Resolution sponsored by 12 Senators 01-SR7 on Feb 1, 2001

    Rated 25% by the NEA, indicating anti-public education votes.

    Miller scores 25% by the NEA on public education issues

    The National Education Association has a long, proud history as the nation's leading organization committed to advancing the cause of public education. Founded in 1857 "to elevate the character and advance the interests of the profession of teaching and to promote the cause of popular education in the United States," the NEA has remained constant in its commitment to its original mission as evidenced by the current mission statement:

    To fulfill the promise of a democratic society, the National Education Association shall promote the cause of quality public education and advance the profession of education; expand the rights and further the interest of educational employees; and advocate human, civil, and economic rights for all.
    In pursuing its mission, the NEA has determined that it will focus the energy and resources of its 2.7 million members toward the "promotion of public confidence in public education." The ratings are based on the votes the organization considered most important; the numbers reflect the percentage of time the representative voted the organization's preferred position.
    Source: NEA website 03n-NEA on Dec 31, 2003

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