The Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee held a hearing today where Education Secretary Arne Duncan testified on the reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA).
Senator Jack Reed (D-RI) brought school libraries to the forefront of the decision when he asked the Secretary about the administration’s decision to consolidate many education programs including Improving Literacy Through School Libraries. Secretary Duncan did admit to the committee that he thought libraries were important but underfunded. He did not elaborate how he planned to rectify that situation however.
The Secretary’s recognizing libraries are underfunded but not exploring solutions is alarming, as the funding crisis libraries are facing will not go away until action is taken.