Bill summaries are authored by CRS.

Shown Here:
Passed Senate amended (03/02/2000)

Affordable Education Act of 2000 - Title I: Education Savings Incentives - Amends the Internal Revenue Code to increase, from $500 to $2,000, the maximum annual contribution allowed to an education individual retirement account. Renames such accounts as education savings accounts. Eliminates the contribution marriage penalty, with respect to such an account, by providing that the phase-out threshold dollar amounts on a joint return shall be exactly double the amounts on an individual return. Includes qualified elementary and secondary education school expenses within the definition of qualified education expenses.

(Sec. 102) Permits an eligible educational institution (currently, limited to a State or agency or instrumentality thereof) to maintain a qualified tuition program.

Title II: Educational Assistance - Permanently extends the exclusion from gross income of employer provided educational assistance.

(Sec. 202) Eliminates the 60 month limit on the student loan interest deduction.

(Sec. 203) Excludes from gross income certain amounts received under the National Public Health Service Corps Scholarship Program and the F. Edward Hebert Armed Forces Health Professions Scholarship and Financial Assistance Program.

(Sec. 204) Eliminates the two percent floor on miscellaneous itemized deductions for the qualified professional development expenses of elementary and secondary school teachers.

(Sec. 205) Allows, in the case of an individual who is a teacher at an elementary or secondary school on a full-time basis, a tax credit (of up to $100) equal to the sum of the qualified elementary and secondary education expenses which are paid or incurred by the taxpayer during each taxable year.

(Sec. 206) Excludes from gross income any qualified national service educational award.

(Sec. 207) Eliminates the marriage penalty with respect to the phase-out of the education loan interest deduction.

Title III: Liberalization of Tax-Exempt Financing Rules for Public School Construction - Increases the amount by which certain governmental bonds used to finance public school capital expenditures may be exempted from specified arbitrage bond provisions.

(Sec. 302) Provides for the treatment of qualified public educational facility bonds as exempt facility bonds.

(Sec. 303) Permits aggregate Federal guarantees of up to $500 million in school construction bonds by the Federal Housing Finance Board. Provides that the preceding sentence shall take effect upon the enactment, after the date of the enactment of this Act, of legislation expressly authorizing the Federal Housing Finance Board to allocate authority to Federal Home Loan Banks to guarantee any such bond, but only if such legislation makes specific reference to this section.

(Sec. 304) Campus Fire Safety Right to Know Act - Amends the Higher Education Act of 1965 to require each eligible institution participating in any program under title IV (Student Assistance) to: (1) prepare, publish, and distribute to all current students and employees, and to any applicant for enrollment or employment upon request, an annual fire safety report which discloses specified types of information about that institution's campus fire safety standards and practices; (2) make periodic reports to the campus community on fires and false alarms that are reported to local fire departments in a manner that will aid in preventing similar occurrences; and (3) annually report to the Secretary of Education a copy of statistics on campus occurrences of fires and false fire alarms. Requires the Secretary to report to Congress.

Title IV: Transition to Teaching - Transition to Teaching Act - Authorizes appropriations to award grants, contracts, or cooperative agreements to qualifying institutions of higher education (IHEs) and public and nonprofit organizations to: (1) recruit highly qualified teachers in particular subject areas, such as mathematics, science, foreign languages, bilingual education, and special education, needed by high-poverty school districts, and support career-changing professionals who have knowledge and experience that will help them become such teachers; (2) provide training stipends and other financial incentives for program participants; (3) assist IHEs or other teacher training providers to meet particular needs of professionals changing their careers to teaching; (4) provide placement activities, including identifying high-poverty local educational agencies (LEAs) with needs for particular skills and characteristics of the newly trained program participants and assist those participants to obtain employment in those LEAs; and (5) provide post-placement induction or support activities for program participants. Requires program participants who complete training to teach in a high-poverty LEA for at least three years, or else repay all or a portion of their training stipend or other incentive.

Title V: Miscellaneous Provisions - Extends from two to three years the age of computers which may be donated to schools and for which an individual may receive a deduction.

(Sec. 502) Establishes a limited credit for the donation of computers to schools and senior centers.

(Sec. 503) Directs the Secretary of Health and Human Services to report to Congress on the extent and severity of child poverty in the United States.

(Sec. 504) Authorizes the Secretary to establish a program of awarding grants to States: (1) to enable the States to assist eligible individuals to obtain certification as elementary school or secondary school teachers or to serve as teachers' aides; and (2) to facilitate the employment of the eligible individuals by local educational agencies identified as experiencing a shortage of teachers or teachers' aides.

(Sec. 505) Requires each school that receives Federal funding to: (1) take steps to reduce the exposure of children to pesticides on school grounds, both indoors and outdoors; and (2) as specified, provide parents and guardians of children that attend the school with advance notification of certain pesticide applications on school grounds.

(Sec. 506) Expresses the sense of the Senate that the reauthorization of the Safe and Drug-Free Schools program that Congress soon will be considering should target the elimination of illegal drugs and violence in our schools and should encourage local schools to insist on zero-tolerance policies towards violence and illegal drug use.

(Sec. 507) Directs the Secretary of Education to award grants to elementary and secondary schools to enable such schools to: (1) develop and disseminate model programs to reduce violence in schools; (2) educate students about the dangers associated with guns; and (3) provide violence prevention information (including information about safe gun storage) to children and their parents. Authorizes appropriations.