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Office of the Press Secretary

For Immediate Release July 6, 2000


I am pleased that the Education Department announced today the release of the first $100 million from the Title I School Accountability Fund to help states and school districts turn around low-performing schools. Over the last seven years, we have followed a common sense reform strategy - invest more in our schools and demand more in return. The funds announced today will support local communities in thirty-one states and the District of Columbia implement strategies that work to turn around their worst-performing schools by: implementing a tougher curriculum; helping teachers get the skills and training they need; and if necessary, closing down a failing school and reopening it under new leadership or as a public charter school.

Today, I call on Congress again to enact my budget proposal, which would double the Accountability Fund to $250 million; fulfill our commitment to hire 100,000 high quality teachers to reduce class size in the early grades; build and modernize public schools; and ensure after school help for every child in a failing school. I also urge Congress to pass my Education Accountability Act, which will enhance the efforts of states, districts and schools to ensure all of America's children can achieve high standards by focusing on results.