Congressman Bishop believes that education goes hand-in hand with America’s economic recovery. Throughout his career in the United States House of Representatives, he has supported initiatives to ensure that Americans of all ages have the knowledge and skills they need to succeed in the global economy. In the midst of the nation’s prolonged economic downturn, Congressman Bishop was proud to support the Education Jobs and Medicaid Assistance Act, which provides $10 billion for aid to local school districts to prevent layoffs in elementary and secondary schools, saving an estimated 161,000 education jobs nationwide and the jobs of 5,700 in Georgia.
Congressman Bishop also supported the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA), which was enacted during the height of the economic downturn in 2009. Among its provisions are a State Fiscal Stabilization Fund, which helps local school districts prevent teacher layoffs as well as modernize and repair public schools; a $2,500 American Opportunity Tax Credit to make college more affordable; an expansion of Head Start to 110,000 additional children; and increased funds for education technology and improving teacher quality.
In addition, he has worked tirelessly to make our nation’s schools and universities accessible and affordable. He strongly supported the Student Aid and Fiscal Responsibility Act, which is the single largest investment in aid to help students and families pay for college in history. The legislation, which was signed into law on March 30, 2010, also is fully offset and comes at no cost to taxpayers. The Student Aid and Fiscal Responsibility Act reforms the system of federal student loans to save taxpayers $87 billion. It then invests $77 billion of those savings back into education, especially by making college more affordable, and directs $10 billion back to the Treasury to reduce entitlement spending. The measure also increases the Pell Grant maximum amount and keeps interest rates low on subsidized federal student loans. Other provisions invests $2.5 billion in Historically Black Colleges and Universities and Minority-Serving Institutions as well as $2 billion in a competitive grant program for community colleges to develop and improve educational or career training programs.
Distant learning will now be possible for most of the area thanks to $20 million in stimulus funding that will allow for broadband Internet service in several southwest Georgia counties. Of those funds, $13 million in stimulus funds have been allocated for the development of high-speed broadband in Baker, Calhoun, Early, Mitchell, and Miller counties. An additional $4.5 million in stimulus grants, plus a $1.5 million private match, will allow the Internet provider Windstream to increase and enhance high-speed broadband lines throughout southwest Georgia to speeds of up to 12 mega-bits per second.