Thursday, August 27, 2009

America's Young People Have Lost a Champion

"Every American should have the opportunity to receive a high quality education, a job that respects their dignity and protects their safety, and health care that does not condemn those whose health is impaired to a lifetime of poverty and lost opportunity."

Senator Edward Moore Kennedy 1932-2009

For over forty years he fought for all of our children. He never gave up. He never wavered.

He championed Head Start, Early Head Start, and fought to reauthorize and expand Head Start programs over the years to include Native American children, and the children of migrant workers. He fought for the Keeping Children and Families Safe Act that expanded funding and supported state programs for abused and neglected children. He sponsored the Military Child Care Act to increase funding for child care in the armed forces. He worked continually to make college more affordable and accessible for young people eager to learn. He worked continually to get federal dollars into public schools and libraries.

He brought his favorite books to schools and read to children on a weekly basis, loving every minute of it. He fought for federal funding to support Reading is Fundamental and worked with First Book to create a National Book Bank for Children.

He cared for black children and white children and every shade in between. He cared for children with intellectual disabilities and physical challenges. He cared for poor children, rich children, immigrant children, and native born. He cared for the tall and the small; the weak and the strong. His heart was big enough to hold them all.

Because of the life work of Edward Moore Kennedy all of our children lead healthier, safer lives--all of our children have a better chance to fulfill the gifts given to them by their Creator.

Thank you Senator Kennedy.

Mary Brigid Barrett
The National Children's Book and Literacy Alliance

To read Senator Kennedy’s full record on educational issues, go to:

To hear Senator’s Kennedy thoughts on young people’s civic education, go to:

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