Congressman Tim Ryan Applauds Inclusion of Maker Education, Teacher Stress Language in Appropriations Bill

Jul 20, 2017 Issues: Economy, Education

Washington, DC – Congressman Tim Ryan applauded the inclusion of language for promoting maker education and studying the effects of teacher stress in the FY2018 Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education Appropriations Bill in the Manager’s Amendment. Due to unacceptable cuts to effective and important programs and benefits designed to lift up hardworking American’s and their families, Ryan voted against the final bill, which passed by a party-line vote of 28 - 22. 

“The renaissance of the maker movement and accompanying technologies has enormous potential to reshape our national economy. Tools such as 3D printers, desktop machines, and programs for digital design are becoming more affordable and accessible. None of that matters, however, if we don’t have a workforce trained to use them. That is why I am so pleased that language from my  21st Century Shop Class Act was included in the manager’s amendment.  Maker education and makerspaces exposes students to hands-on, project based learning approaches that build critical skills needed to increase economic growth and encourages students to imagine, create, innovate, collaborate through the process of manufacturing, testing and demonstrating their ideas. This language will encourage more and more schools to incorporate maker education and makerspaces into their curriculum to prepare our children for the future,” said Congressman Ryan.

“I am also pleased that the Committee recognized that high levels of stress are adversely affecting the health of our teachers, by incorporating language from my Teacher Health and Wellness Act into the bill.  Before they can take care of our students, teachers must take care of themselves. Their important work can be mentally taxing, and having the tools available to manage these stresses is crucial to making sure our students are getting a first rate education. By instructing the Director of the National Institute of Health to study this issue, we are putting ourselves on course to be able to successfully develop a plan to manage the issue of teacher stress, and guarantee better educational outcomes for our children, and a better quality of life for our teachers. ”  

In addition to those provisions, Congressman Ryan also offered an amendment to restore funding which was previously cut or eliminated to several important education programs. “I am saddened that Republicans on Committee voted against this amendment. Investing in education is an investment in our economy, and our children’s future. Making sure our students have access to quality education and the skills they need to succeed in the 21st Century should be one of the top priorities of this Committee. My amendment would have been a small step into making this bill better, but instead this legislation cuts not only education programs like Pell Grants and Title II funding, but also Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act Grants for States, Job Corps, Apprenticeship Grants, and more. This bill turns it back on hardworking families and the programs and services that they rely on every day to make their lives better. I expected more from this Committee and so do my constituents.”

The amendment was defeated in a 23 - 29 vote. The Ryan Amendment would have restored funding to the following programs:

  • Restores elimination of Comprehensive Literacy Development Grants to FY17 level ($190 million over House bill).
  • Restores Title II-A/Supporting Effective Instruction Grants to FY17 level of $2.1 billion (House eliminates).
  • Increases funds to FY17 level of $1.19 billion for 21st Century Community Learning Centers ($191.67 million over House bill).
  • Restores cut/elimination of $100 million for Education Innovation and Research.
  • Restores $1,815,000 cut/elimination of American History and Civics National Academies.
  • Restores cut/elimination of $14,500,000 for School Leader Recruitment and Support.
  • Restores cut/elimination of $27,000,000 for Arts in Education.
  • Restores cut of $1.18 million to Magnet Schools Assistance for a total of $97.6 million.
  • Restores cut of $23 million for Supporting Effective Educator Development for a total of $65 million.
  • Restores cut of $13.25 million for Promise Neighborhoods for a total of $73.25 million.
  • Restores cut/elimination of $12.67 million for Special Olympics/programs for kids with intellectual disabilities.
  • Restores cut/elimination of $27.55 million for Supported Employment Grants.
  • Restores cut/elimination of $7.06 million for International Education: Overseas Programs.
  • Restores cut/elimination of $43.09 million for Teacher Quality Partnerships.
  • Restore cut/elimination of $15.1 million for Child Care Access Means Parents in School Program (CCAMPIS).
  • Restores cut of $22.27 million to Graduate Assistance in Areas of National Need (GAANN).
  • Restores cut of $.039 million to Historically Black Colleges and Universities Capital Financing for total of $20.48 million.
  • Restores $3.3 billion rescission to Pell surplus.

Congressman Ryan introduced the 21st Century Shop Class Act in May of 2017. This legislation would upgrade and modernize career and technical education programs in schools across the country. The 21st Century SHOP CLASS Act would define maker education and makerspaces, and amend the Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Act to allow funding for maker education, makerspaces, and training for teachers in the application of maker education. Learn more about the bill here:

Congressman Ryan introduced the Teacher Health and Wellness Act in May of 2017. This bill would provide support for teachers by creating a pilot study at the National Institute of Health aimed at reducing teacher stress, increasing teacher health and ultimately boosting student achievement. Learn more about the bill here: