Saperstein: This long-awaited moment signals our nation’s continuing commitment to ending the cycle of poverty by providing our low-income children with better educational opportunities.
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Washington D.C. November 16 2007 – In response to Wednesday’s passage of the Head Start reauthorization bill, Rabbi David Saperstein, Director and Counsel of the Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism, issued the following statement:
“We are greatly pleased by Wednesday’s strong bipartisan votes in both the House and Senate to reauthorize Head Start. With Congress unable to agree on reauthorization legislation since 2003, this long-awaited moment signals our nation’s continuing commitment to ending the cycle of poverty by providing low-income children with better educational opportunities.
The foundation for learning begins to be built long before children enter kindergarten. Head Start’s vital and proven programs target pre-school aged children and use a multi-faceted approach to provide them with schooling, nutrition, and additional resources to prepare them to succeed in learning. The 22 million children who have participated in Head Start since 1965 are a testament to its effectiveness and popularity.
The Jewish tradition teaches, “Teachers and schoolchildren are society’s most beautiful ornaments” (Shir Ha-shirim Rabbah 1:10:2).
I look forward to President Bush’s signature on this essential legislation that will bring a better and brighter future to our nation’s children.”
The Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism is the
Washington office of the Union for Reform Judaism, whose more
than 900 congregations across North America encompass 1.5 million Reform Jews, and the Central Conference of American Rabbis, whose membership
includes more than 1800 Reform rabbis