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Obama: Urges Schools to Embrace Reform, Innovation

US President Barack Obama delivers his weekly address, 21 May 2011.

US President Barack Obama delivers his weekly address, 21 May 2011.

U.S. President Barack Obama is urging school systems across the United States to embrace reform that elevates teaching and learning.

During his weekly address Saturday, Obama said the reforms will come from the people on the frontline, such as teachers, administrators, and parents.

The president says states showing commitment to educational reform will have access to funding through his administration's "Race to the Top" program where states compete for education dollars.

Obama says schools need authority to implement reform that best fits their community.

The president says the No Child Left Behind law restricts that change and he is calling on the Congress to replace it.

Republicans used their weekly address to take aim at the president's energy policies.

Senator Kay Bailey-Hutchinson criticized the Obama administration for proposing more taxes and regulations on energy companies that will generate jobs to help the economy.

The senator says the U.S. should be exploring oil and gas resources in the United States that will help lower prices at the pump and reduce the demand for imported fuel.

Some information for this report was provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.