Yesterday Montana’s Sen. Jon Tester met with elementary school leaders from Montana in Washington, D.C.

The occasion was the Senate’s consideration of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, which is due for reauthorization. It was last reauthorized in 2002, and allocates federal fund for primary and secondary public education.

At the meeting Tester, himself a former elementary school teacher, laid out his support for the act and his intention to vote for reauthorization.

“Making smart investments in early learning is the best way to prepare our children for future success,” Tester said in a prepared statement. “Giving kids an early boost will pay big dividends down the road.  By focusing on early childhood education and improving school readiness, we are strengthening the future our state and our nation.”

According to Tester’s office:

Tester recently co-sponsored The Strong Start for America’s Children Act, which expands young Montanans’ access to early childhood education.  The bill increases investments in initiatives that provide high-quality pre-school to low- and moderate-income families.

Joining Tester in his Washington, D.C. office were Kirk Miller (Helena), Executive Director of School Administrators of Montana, Matthew Lewis (Lewistown), Principal of Highland Park & Garfield Elementary Schools and President of the Montana Association of Elementary and Middle School Principals (MAEMSP), Dean Jardee (Vaughn), Principal of Vaughn Schools and 1st VP, David Wick (Columbia Falls), Principal of Columbia Falls Junior High, and Carole McKittrick (Great Falls), Principal of Mountain View Elementary School and Federal Relations Coordinator.