WASHINGTON, D.C. | May 30, 2014
Across the country, workers and job creators are struggling with the consequences of the president’s government-run health care scheme. Higher costs, fewer hours of work, and loss of existing health insurance continue to threaten the health and income security of working families. However, these problems plague not only America’s workplaces, but our classrooms as well. Last year the House Education and the Workforce Committee began examining the effects of the health care law on schools, colleges, and universities. Following an oversight hearing, the committee launched the #YourStory initiative, which provides the American people an opportunity to share personal anecdotes on this important issue. Through these efforts and recent press reports, the ObamaCare challenges facing America’s classrooms are coming to light:
- Cities, counties, public schools and community colleges around the country have limited or reduced the work hours of part-time employees to avoid having to provide them with health insurance under the Affordable Care Act, state and local officials say. (New York Times, “Public Sector Cuts Part-Time Shifts to Bypass Insurance Law.”)
- "I received word today that my teaching load for the rest of the school year will be cut by four credits – a difference of thousands of dollars in my paycheck.” (YourStory, Helieanna of Minnesota)
- “Looking at these numbers in their entirety, the cost of the Affordable Care Act requirements to the Meriden Board of Education approaches $4.6M potentially costing us 58 teaching positions.” (Hearing of the House Education and the Workforce Committee, Testimony of Dr. Mark Benigni.)
- "Who is really being punished is the students... The travesty is we are making a decision not to put the best teacher in front of the class.” (YourStory, Christopher of New York)
To protect administrators, teachers, and students from the negative effects of the health care law, Representative Luke Messer (R-IN) introduced the Safeguarding Classrooms Hurt by ObamaCare’s Obligatory Levies (SCHOOL) Act. The legislation will help prevent the health care law from inflicting additional harm on the nation’s education system.
H.R. 4775 - THE SCHOOL ACT:
- Exempts K-12 schools, institutions of higher education, and state and local educational agencies from the requirements of the health care law’s employer mandate.
- Requires the secretary of education to evaluate the impact of the SCHOOL Act on schools’ ability to meet the educational needs of low-income students and institutions’ ability to maintain current academic opportunities.
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