(Copyright 1996. All rights reserved.)

The Tattoo

--- Making a Permanent Impression Since 1994 ---

November 4, 1996

Candidates are pro-education

By Hila Yosafi
Tattoo staff writer

Connecticut's teens are lucky to have two congressional candidates
who are interested in our educational lives.

U.S. Rep. Nancy Johnson, a New Britain Republican, said she 
supports funding for various school programs, especially special

Democrat Charlotte Koskoff, a Plainville resident who is hoping to
unseat the 14-year veteran congresswoman, said she is a strong
supporter of education.

Koskoff, an education professor at Central Connecticut State
University and ex-teacher, said she is particularly interested in
expanding the pre-school Head Start program that gives a boost
to low-income children before they enter elementary school.

Both candidates say that requiring public school uniforms will
benefit students. Johnson said students' spirits and minds will be
more noticeable than appearance if uniforms are adopted.

Johnson said the laws governing special education programs are
too complex. She helped push through a reform this year that failed
to win Senate approval. But she expects it to pass next year.

Koskoff and Johnson say more jobs should be available to

Though Johnson would like to hold down the minimum wage so
employers would be able to hire more teens, Koskoff wants the
lowest allowable pay increased.

Johnson said she also supports the successful school-to-work
program that helps students find jobs after graduation.

Both candidates agree that more activities should be available to
children and teens. They said a variety of free or low-cost programs
ought to be in place for both boys and girls.

Each of the politicians, though, thinks that individual towns have to
decide what's needed.

Johnson said that controlling drugs and violence in schools and
towns should be handled on the local level.

But Koskoff said she strongly supports the Goals 2000 program that
aims to keep schools safe. She said Johnson voted to cut funding
for the program.

Johnson and Koskoff each said that young people should pay
attention to government and politics.

``Knowledge is power,'' said Johnson, adding that those who know
more have ``a decided advantage'' over those who know less.

Koskoff urged teens to get involved in the Nov. 5 election - even
at the last minute.

``Volunteer for a wonderful learning experience,'' said Koskoff.
``Make a difference.''