ALEXANDRIA, LA — On Thursday, La. State Representatives Lance Harris of Alexandria, Frankie Howard of Many and other Representatives across the state will start visiting schools in their districts to discuss matters of education reform with teachers, principals and administrators. Some Republican house members such as Chris Hazel have already visited schools in their home areas.
“It’s always good to visit with those folks in the trenches,” said Representative Howard. “We need to get their perspective on the changes that have been brought about by reform.” Representative Chris Hazel, who already has visited some schools, said, “The interaction between the students is awesome as they discuss the various aspects of a representative government. This is a great program and I look forward to my next visit.”
Republican legislators from across the state have signed up to spend part of the day in their local public schools. “It’s important for us to get into the community and talk with our constituents,” Harris said, attempting to lead by example as the chairman of the House Republican Delegation. “We made a lot of progress through our education reform efforts over the last few years and we want to see firsthand how they are impacting teachers and students.”
During the last year’s legislative session, Republican legislators were instrumental in securing an additional $69 million to be allocated to K-12 education in the 2014 state budget. The additional funding appropriated to public education began as an amendment by Republican senators in the Senate Finance Committee. This action made it possible for the budget conference committee to work in a bipartisan effort to enhance the needed funding for K–12 public schools and teacher pay raises.
“Republicans have fought timelessly to ensure that Louisiana children have the opportunity to receive a quality education,” Harris said. “Already we see the results and we are dedicated to further pursuing bold conservative reforms….because they work. We are looking forward to seeing the results first hand in our schools.”