U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) today voted in favor of the Fiscal Year 2009 Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies appropriations bill, which was approved by the Senate Appropriations Committee and includes funding for important projects in Tennessee.
"This legislation provides a needed boost to education, health, and job training programs across the state, including our public schools," Alexander said. "Tennesseans will benefit from better hospitals, better schools, better health care research, and more job opportunities because of this legislation.”
The bill funds the government’s major health and education programs, including federal funding for K-12 education programs and higher education. Among other provisions, the legislation provides $1.95 million in grants to support Presidential Academies for teachers of American history and civics and Congressional Academies for students of American history and civics. Senator Alexander authored the American History and Civics Education Act of 2004 that created the Presidential and Congressional Academies to offer intensive summer programs for teachers and students to strengthen their knowledge of American history and civics with hands-on learning and to explore different ways to teach these important subjects.
The bill also includes $97 million for the Teacher Incentive Fund program, which provides grants to local educational agencies to train and compensate principals and teachers who help low-income children achieve better results based primarily on measures of gains in student achievement in high-need schools. It also increases the maximum Pell Grant to $4,410 which will help millions more students pay for their college education.
Alexander is a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee. The legislation must now be considered and approved by the full Senate.
Tennessee funding in the bill includes:
• $600,000 for Meharry Medical College for the health sciences library revitalization project.
• $550,000 for the Hickman Community Hospital and Lyles Clinic.
• $500,000 for the Shelby County Regional Medical Center for the emergency room expansion project.
• $500,000 for Tennessee Tech University for the Nursing School/Center for Rural Health.
• $400,000 for Middle Tennessee State University for the Teachers Now Program, a comprehensive math and science teacher training program
• $100,000 for the KIPP Foundation to support the KIPP DIAMOND Academy in Memphis and KIPP Academy Nashville.
# # #