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1998 Ron Paul Chapter 96

English Language Fluency Act

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10 September 1998


1998 Ron Paul 96:1
Mr. PAUL. Mr. Chairman, I appreciate the opportunity to express my opposition to H.R. 3892, the English Language Fluency Act. Although I supported the bill when it was marked-up before the Education and Workforce Committee, after having an opportunity to study the Congressional Budget Office (CBO)’s scoring of H.R. 3892, I realized that I must oppose this bill because it increases expenditures for bilingual education. Thus, this bill actually increases the Federal Government’s role in education.

1998 Ron Paul 96:2
I originally supported this bill primarily because of the provisions voiding compliance agreements between the Department of Education and local school districts. Contrary to what the name implies, compliance agreements are the means by which the Federal Government has forced 288 schools to adapt the model of bilingual education favored by the Federal bureaucrats in complete disregard of the wishes of the people in those communities.

1998 Ron Paul 96:3
The English Language Fluency Act also improves current law by changing the formula by which schools receive Federal bilingual funds from a competitive to a formula grant. Competitive grants are a fancy term for forcing States and localities to conform to Federal dictates before the Federal Government returns to them some of the moneys unjustly taken from the American people. Formula grants allow States and localities greater flexibility in designing their own education programs and thus are preferable to competitive grants.

1998 Ron Paul 96:4
Although H.R. 3892 takes some small steps forward toward restoring local control of education, it takes a giant step backward by extending bilingual education programs for three years beyond the current authorization and according to CBO this will increase Federal spending by $719 million! Mr. Chairman, it is time that Congress realized that increasing Federal funding is utterly incompatible with increasing local control. The primary reason State and local governments submit to Federal dictates in areas such as bilingual education is because the Federal Government bribes States with moneys illegitimately taken from the American people to confer to Federal dictates. Since he who pays the piper calls the tune, any measures to take more moneys from the American people and give it to Federal educrats reduces parental control by enhancing the Federal stranglehold on education. Only by defunding the Federal bureaucracy can State, local and parental control be restored.

1998 Ron Paul 96:5
In order to restore parental control of education I have introduced the Family Education Freedom Act (H.R. 1816), which provides parents with a $3,000 per child tax credit to pay for elementary and secondary education expenses. This bill places parents back in charge and is thus the most effective education reform bill introduced in this Congress.

1998 Ron Paul 96:6
Mr. Chairman, despite having some commendable features, such as eliminating consent decrees, the English Language Fluency Act, H.R. 3892, is not worthy of support because it authorizes increasing the Federal Government’s control over education dollars. I therefore call on my colleagues to reject this legislation and instead work for constitutional education reform by returning money and control over education to America’s parents through legislation such as the Family Education Freedom Act.
Note:

1998 Ron Paul 96:5 a $3,000 per child tax credit probably should be hyphenated: a $3,000-per-child tax credit.

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