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    Indiana's single greatest responsibility is providing a high quality education to every Hoosier child. Indiana Senate Democrats firmly believe that educating our children must be the state's top priority and embrace a philosophy of lifelong learning, beginning with pre-kindergarten education.

    Indiana continues to improve opportunities for all students to reach their education and career goals with a renewed focus on meaningful evaluation and rewarding excellence. Teachers deserve the resources and support needed to train and nurture Indiana's future generations. By continually working to find new and innovative ways to support our students and teachers while providing the necessary funding for schools, we can ensure that Indiana's next generation is prepared to compete in a global economy.

    Improving access to affordable, quality higher education will ensure that all of our students are prepared for the knowledge-based economic future of the 21st century.  Providing adequate state funding to our public universities helps to keep tuition low and teaching quality high while making more financial aid available.

    2012 Early Education and Taxpayer-Funded Program Oversight Proposals:

    • Establishing the Office of Child Development and Early Learning to collaborate with IDOE and FSSA to create a plan for including pre-kindergarten in Indiana's K-12 framework. (SB 288)
    • Providing pre-kindergarten grants for middle income families with earnings that put them outside the eligibility for federal assistance programs, but who still need support in affording preschool education. (SB 204
    • Providing oversight of private schools receiving vouchers, including an annual fiscal audit of private schools receiving public money through vouchers and limiting to 3 percent how much of each taxpayer funded voucher could be used toward administrative costs. (SB 214
    • Providing legislative guidance to the IDOE for the oversight of private organizations contracted by the state to take over underachieving public schools. (SB 290)

    Read more about the proposals>>

    Indiana Senate Democrats support:

    • Providing appropriate levels of funding for the education of all children
    • Extending full-day kindergarten to every Hoosier child
    • Investing in early childhood education
    • Providing free text books for every Hoosier student
    • Relieving schools and classroom teachers from unfunded mandates and nonteaching assignments
    • Offering more professional development opportunities to our teachers
    • Reducing dropout rates through early intervention for high-risk students and assuring that cultural competency training is implemented for educators
    • Keeping the cost of higher education affordable and providing more financial aid assistance for students