Investing in Our Children and Improving Rhode Island's Schools
Good schools are essential to our communities and our economy, and Senator Reed is working hard to help all our schools strive and succeed. This means strengthening education at all levels, through college and beyond.
Parents are children’s first teachers, and Senator Reed continues to work to strengthen family engagement in education. Senator Reed introduced the Family Engagement in Education Act to ensure that schools have the tools they need to effectively partner with parents. He also fights for child care, school construction, Head Start, and other initiatives so that all children have access to safe, affordable, and high quality care and education.
Senator Reed strongly believes that every student with the drive to attend college should have the opportunity to go. He has been on the front lines of the fight to ease student loan debt burdens and keep interest rates low. He is a champion for the Pell Grant and has authored legislation to incentivize states to provide more need-based grant aid for college.
Senator Reed believes the more we do to support effective teaching and effective school leadership, the better results we will get for students. He has written legislation to improve the preparation, professional development, and mentoring of educators to strengthen teaching and learning in our schools.
Key Priorities & Accomplishments
- Senator Reed cosponsored the In The Red Act of 2016 to urge Congress to address college affordability. He also introduced the Pell Grant Preservation & Expansion Act to expand and permanently safeguard the Pell Grant program, helping millions of low-income students offset the rising costs of college. He continues to fight for college affordability and lower cost loans.
- To help make college more affordable for Rhode Islanders, Reed helped pass the largest investment in college aid in history – ending a flawed system that gave away billions in federal subsidies to private banks and putting those taxpayer dollars directly in the hands of students to pay for their education.
- Senator Reed worked to make Rhode Island eligible for the Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research (EPSCoR), which is a stream of research and development funding exclusively for states that traditionally receive less science funding and that are seeking to improve their research infrastructure.
- Senator Reed annually hosts a free College Financial Aid Workshop to help college-bound students and their families get a better sense of the financial aid options available to them. It provides an overview of federal and state aid programs, and advises ways to apply for them.
- Senator Reed wrote the law streamlining the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) to ensure more students could complete the form and get financial aid and supports further improvements to the application process.
- In order to improve elementary and secondary education, Senator Reed is the author of legislation to improve the professional development and mentoring of educators and worked to strengthen family engagement in education.
- Senator Reed has protected the federal investment in literacy and school libraries. Over the last three years, more than $75 million in federal support has gone to school library programs and other literacy initiatives that provide children with books in the home.
- Senator Reed is the author of the proposed No Child Left Inside Act, which would help free up critical funding to support outdoor learning activities, reconnect more kids with nature, and strengthen environmental education in America's classrooms.
- Senator Reed helped provide $250 million to continue support for Preschool Development Grants in 2017, almost $5 million of which will go towards supporting and expanding pre-k programs in Rhode Island.
Read more by visiting Senator Reed's Working for RI page.