A sound education system is vital to the global competitiveness of our nation. As both a parent and a former small business owner, I understand that our schools must be strong and offer an environment for students to learn and develop. This goal is best achieved when school decisions are made at the state and local level. Parents and legal guardians must be empowered to have a direct impact on their own children’s education. No one knows what’s best for your children better than you—as a parent—do. In those few places where the federal government may have a role in strengthening education, I am committed to working with my colleagues to ensure our children are afforded every opportunity for academic success. Congress must tear down the bureaucratic roadblocks that our educators face and strive to guarantee our educational programs are both effective and efficient. Whether parents choose to home school, send their children to a private or parochial school, or take advantage of public education, the federal government should not be a hinder them.