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bullet Joint Committee on Education, Arts, and Humanities
bullet Massachusetts Department of Education
bullet Massachusetts Board of Higher Education
bullet Massachusetts School District Profiles
bullet Massachusetts Comprehensive Assessment System
bullet United States Department of Education
bullet Federal Student Financial Assistance Programs
bullet Special Education in Massachusetts
bullet Graduate Equivalency Diplomas



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"The dreams of parents and children can only be realized by effort, theirs and ours, and by a system which challenges and stretches and tests their minds and imaginations. We owe these children - our children - such an effort and such a system."
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-Speaker Tom Finneran
Our children are the future of our nation. It is our responsibility to give them the foundation that they will need in order to succeed in our increasingly knowledge-based economy.

As Speaker, Tom Finneran has led the House in improving the educational opportunities offered to the Commonwealth's children. The Legislature has doubled the number of full-day kindergarten classes in the Commonwealth and increased the amount of money given to local districts for education spending each year for a total increase of $28 billion over the past ten years. An important part of this funding increase included holding our school districts to higher levels of accountability. The hallmark of the Legislature's education reform was the institution of the Massachusetts Comprehensive Assessment System, or MCAS exam. Speaker Finneran supports this standard for holding public schools accountable for providing the Commonwealth's youth with a sound education. The Legislature also passed a comprehensive revision of the Special Education law, making Massachusetts' standard of service consistent with that of the rest of the country. In addition, an animating principle of Tom Finneran's legislative career is his belief that early education is essential to a child's success in life. He is also proud of the advances the Commonwealth has made under his watch as Speaker in reducing childhood hunger and strengthening early childhood literacy programs.

In the coming years, Speaker Finneran looks to sustain the progress that we have made in building the Commonwealth's early education programs and to keep our public schools, colleges, and universities national models of Massachusetts' commitment to lifelong learning.

coner image Voter Record: Education corner image
Support Oppose Bill # and Explanation Date
 #   H. 5010. This bill proposed a large-scale restructuring of bilingual education in the Commonwealth giving school districts flexibility in designing programs for limited English proficient students and increasing the districts' accountability for successful teaching of English. House passed. (Y137 N14) 7/9/02
 #   Amendment to H. 5100. This amendment provided educational funding in the area of early literacy programs, METCO, head start programs, full-day kindergarten development, home based parenting, adult basic education, MCAS funding, WPT, alternative education, gifted schools, and creates a commission to monitor school funding. House passed. (Y155 N0) 5/14/02
 #   Amendment to H. 5100. This amendment allocated money from Chapter 70 funds, the lottery distribution, and available additional assistance throughout various cities and towns to be used by the school districts to improve the areas they deem in need. House passed. (Y154 N0) 5/13/02
   # Amendment to S. 2027. This amendment would make it necessary for three out of every seven charter schools established to be for alternative education for disruptive students. House rejected. (Y43 N110) 6/21/00
 #   Amendment to H. 5100. This amendment made increases in the funding for state colleges and universities across the Commonwealth. House passed. (Y158 N0) 4/14/00
 #   On overriding the Governor's veto of section 349, of the fiscal year 2000 budget, the House maintained funding for the universal student breakfast program. House passed. (Y134 N24) 11/17/99
 #   On overriding the Governor's veto of item 4590-0451 in section 2 of the fiscal year 2000 budget, providing funding for various school health services. House passed. (Y158 N0) 11/17/99