ALEXANDRIA, Va., (March 11, 2020)—National PTA is pleased to recognize Senator Lamar Alexander (R-TN) and Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro (D-CT) with its 2020 Congressional Voice for Children Award. The award honors outstanding leadership and commitment to taking action on issues that affect the education, health, safety, well-being and long-term success of America’s children. Senator Alexander and Congresswoman DeLauro will be presented with the award during the association’s 2020 Legislative Conference.
“Senator Alexander and Congresswoman DeLauro have advanced and supported important legislation that makes a difference for the education and long-term success of every child,” said Leslie Boggs, president of National PTA. “We thank them for their leadership and commitment to taking action for our nation’s children. We are pleased to honor them with our 2020 Congressional Voice for Children Award during our legislative conference.”
Senator Alexander was elected to the United States Senate in 2002. He currently serves as chair of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee and also serves on the Senate Appropriations, Energy and Natural Resources, and Rules and Administration Committees. Senator Alexander has had a long and distinguished career in education, which includes playing an integral role in the passage of the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) which contains several laudable family engagement provisions such as the Statewide Family Engagement Centers program. Prior to his tenure in the Senate, Senator Alexander served as secretary of education under President George H.W. Bush.
“Over the last 120 years, PTA has made a lasting, positive impact on our children and their schools. Here’s just one example—PTA was a great partner when Congress worked to pass ESSA, which fixed No Child Left Behind and helped put parents and teachers back in the driver’s seat to help determine their children’s educational experience,” said Senator Alexander. “When President Barack Obama signed ESSA into law on Dec. 10, 2015, he called it a ‘Christmas miracle.’ So, I’m grateful to be recognized by this association that has made such an important impact on our children, and I know will continue to for generations to come.”
Congresswoman DeLauro was elected to the United States House of Representatives in 1991. She currently serves as chair of the Labor, Health and Human Services, Education and Related Agencies Subcommittee, overseeing our nation’s investments in education and child well-being programs. Congresswoman DeLauro has been a constant advocate for children and families and played an integral role in securing $15 million for the Statewide Family Engagement Centers program in the FY20 Labor, Health and Human Services, Education and Related Agencies appropriations bill passed by the House of Representatives. She has also led efforts and secured increases for elementary and secondary education, demonstrating her commitment to ensuring every child is able to reach their full potential.
“Day in and day out, National PTA supports families, public education and the well-being of children across the country,” said Congresswoman DeLauro. “Your commitment and dedication cannot be questioned, and our thanks can never repay you for preparing our kids for the road ahead of them. As Chair of the Appropriations Subcommittee that funds the Department of Education, I was proud to secure funding for the Statewide Family Engagement Centers program in last year’s appropriations bill. The SFEC program helps bring kids’ families into the fold to benefit our youngsters’ development and education, as well as provide professional development in that same vein—and I am proud to support it. Thank you for your recognition, which I take not just as appreciation for past efforts, but as a call to keep working. And I will—you have my word.”
“Senator Alexander and Congresswoman DeLauro have worked diligently to ensure family engagement in education is prioritized, recognizing that this is just as important to children’s success as having a great principal and teachers, a strong curriculum and a positive school climate,” added Nathan R. Monell, CAE, National PTA executive director. “We commend them for their efforts, leadership and commitment. They are true voices for our nation’s children and families.”
Every year, the National PTA Legislative Conference brings together PTA leaders and advocates from across the country to take united action on the association’s advocacy priorities.
During the 2020 conference—themed “PTA Takes Action for Kids”—attendees will hear from speakers and participate in workshops to expand their knowledge of federal law and grow their advocacy skills. Attendees will also amplify their voices by meeting with congressional leaders on Capitol Hill, Wednesday, March 11.