Education and Opportunity

Congresswoman Stefanik is a passionate advocate for North Country students, parents, and teachers. Providing access to high quality education to our children gives them the best opportunities to grow and achieve the American dream. Preparing young students for their future careers fuels our economy with new generations of innovators, entrepreneurs, artists, technicians, and more. Congresswoman Stefanik is a firm believer that the key to a well-educated workforce and community is through academic success opportunity.

We must empower our communities to take a leading role in educating and training the next generation in the North Country. One-size-fits-all federal approaches are ineffective and leave students out in the cold, fortunately Congress is working hard to restore the local role in education and workforce development.

The North Country was harmed by the failed roll out of Common Core. The top-down approach and implementation did not adequately account for concerns from parents, teachers, and local officials. With bipartisan support, Congress passed Every Student Succeeds Act which was a much needed rewrite of No Child Left Behind. This law restores local control to our schools and will work to rebuild the trust that was lost in the North Country. Congresswoman Stefanik will also use her oversight role of the Department of Education to ensure the Every Student Succeeds Act is implemented as Congress intended.

For too long our nation’s young people have been told that the only way to succeed in America is to attend a four-year institution and earn a college degree. While this path works for some, many students find high paying, rewarding careers in the trades. The North Country is home to a robust and growing manufacturing and energy sector – both of which need high-skilled workers. Congresswoman Stefanik will continue to be a voice for career and technical education on the committee while advocating for improved access to higher education.

Congresswoman Stefanik is a vocal advocate for career and technical training and believe we must foster relationships between local businesses and our schools. With both the Institute of Advanced Manufacturing and several BOCES programs the North Country is uniquely situated to take advantage of opportunities presented by career and technical education.

As the first person in her immediate family to graduate from college, Congresswoman Stefanik understands the opportunities a college degree can open; that is why her top higher education priority is to ensure accessibility and affordability for every student with a focus on non-traditional students. American’s are saddled with student debt that has surpassed our nation’s credit card debt. This is unacceptable, and prevents both young graduates and those returning to their studies from starting families and participating in the economy. That is why Congresswoman Stefanik fought to have year-round Pell Grants once again signed into law and is currently leading legislation to extend the Perkins Loan Program which provides access to financing for many low income students across the country. 

As a Member of the House Committee on Education and the Workforce, Congresswoman Stefanik is committed to fighting on behalf of North Country students.

Congresswoman Stefanik’s Legislative Victories on Education:

  • Rep. Stefanik’s Imitative to Expand Access to Pell Grants Year Round Was Signed into Law in May of 2017 

Sponsored Legislation:

  • H.R. 1485, Flexible Pell Grant for 21st Century Students
  • H.R. 2482, Federal Perkins Loan Program Extension Act of 2017

Cosponsored Legislation:

  • H.R. 795, Employer Participation in Student Loan Assistance Act
  • H.R. 1429, LEADS Act of 2017
  • H.R. 1635, Empowering Students Through Enhanced Financial Counseling Act
  • H.R. 1772, AIM HIGH Act
  • H.R. 1957, Safe Schools Improvement Act of 2017
  • H.R. 2434, College Transparency Act
  • H.R. 3422, Interstate Teaching Mobility Act
  • H.R. 2353, Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act
  • H.R. 3272, Veteran Education Empowerment Act

Caucus Membership:

  • Co-chair of the Congressional STEAM Caucus
  • Impact Aid Coalition
  • Congressional Arts Caucus
  • Congressional TRIO Caucus
  • Independent Colleges Caucus
  • Congressional Future Caucus

For more information concerning work and views related to Education and Opportunity, please contact our office.

View information on student financial aid.

More on Education and Opportunity

July 6, 2020 Press Release

Washington, D.C. – Congresswoman Elise Stefanik and Congressman Josh Harder (CA-10) are introducing the Success for Rural Students and Communities Act, along with Reps. Brett Guthrie (KY-02), Cheri Bustos (IL-17), Filemon Vela (TX-34), and Billy Long (MO-07). This is bipartisan legislation that will improve college access and success for rural students by spurring innovation and investment in new strategies to prepare them to complete their credentials and step into high-demand jobs in their communities.

June 23, 2020 Press Release

Washington, D.C. – Today Congresswoman Elise Stefanik introduced a bipartisan bill to provide temporary relief for Perkins loan borrowers along with Congresswoman Katie Porter (CA-45), Congresswoman Susie Lee (NV-03), Congresswoman Lori Trahan (MA-03), and Congresswoman Alma Adams (NC-12). This bipartisan legislation would expand the reach of the student borrower protections included in the CARES Act. The COVID–19 Perkins Loan Relief Act would allow the nearly 2 million borrowers with Perkins loans to forgo making payments on those loans until October.

April 22, 2020 Press Release

Washington, D.C. – Congresswoman Elise Stefanik is introducing the Equity in Student Loan Relief Act, a bipartisan bill that would extend the temporary relief from student loan payments to Federal Family Education Loan (FFEL) borrowers who have been left behind. The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act provided much-needed student loan relief during this global pandemic, suspending all monthly payments and interest accumulation for federally held student loans through September 30, 2020.

April 15, 2020 Press Release

Saratoga, NY – Congresswoman Elise Stefanik has announced over $26 million in funding for NY-21 colleges and universities from the CARES Act in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Over half will go to students in the form of financial aid grants. A full breakdown is below.

March 20, 2020 Press Release

Washington, D.C. – Congresswoman Elise Stefanik sent a letter to House Leadership urging them to take action to waive all federal testing standards for elementary and secondary schools during the Coronavirus crisis. President Trump announced today in his press conference that the standards will not be enforced during this unprecedented time, taking some of the burden off of schools.

March 19, 2020 Press Release

Washington, D.C. – Congresswoman Elise Stefanik is leading a letter to Speaker Pelosi and Leader McCarthy urging a temporary legislative authority for the Secretary of Education to proactively waive all federal testing, accountability, and fiscal requirements for elementary and secondary schools. This blanket waiver requires Congressional action.

March 17, 2020 Press Release

Washington, D.C. – Today, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced it will be collaborating with a variety of non-government organizations to deliver nearly 1,000,000 meals to students at rural schools that have closed due to COVID-19. This announcement follows the USDA’s decision last week to give schools increased flexibility to continue providing meals at no cost to students in need during coronavirus-related school closures.

March 15, 2020 Press Release

Glens Falls, NY: Congresswoman Elise Stefanik released the following statement regarding school closures in NY-21:

February 20, 2020 Press Release

Washington, D.C. – Today, Congresswoman Elise Stefanik announced the beginning of the 2020 Congressional Art Competition. Each spring, the House of Representatives sponsors a nation-wide high school arts competition as an opportunity to recognize and encourage the artistic talent in New York’s 21st Congressional District. The Congressional Art Competition is open to all high school students in the 21st District. The winning artwork will be displayed for one year in the U.S. Capitol.

February 20, 2020 Press Release

Washington, D.C. – Congresswoman Elise Stefanik is a cosponsor of the Stop for School Buses Act, legislation to require the Department of Transportation (DOT) to compile illegal passing laws in all states, review existing public safety measures and programs to prevent illegal passing of school buses, and create new strategies and messaging. The bipartisan bill provides a comprehensive federal evaluation of methods to prevent accidents and protect the safety of students.