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Early education is topic of first lady’s testimony

SHARE Early education is topic of first lady’s testimony

Following the example of Hillary Rodham Clinton, Rosalynn Carter and Eleanor Roosevelt, Laura Bush testified on Capitol Hill on Thursday about correcting a social ill in America. Her topic was the importance of early childhood education, and she included the lessons that she and her husband learned from reading "Hop on Pop" to their twin daughters.

"Before I knew it, they could 'read' many words in 'Hop on Pop' and other books," Mrs. Bush said. "Well, actually, they memorized those words because we read them so often. But the important thing is they thought they were reading."

Her testimony was before the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions, which includes Hillary Clinton. The Democratic senator from New York, who made children's welfare issues a central focus of her eight years as first lady, told her successor that "I look forward to working with you," then praised Mrs. Bush "for everything you've done since Sept. 11."

Laura Bush's first appearance on Capitol Hill was on Sept. 11. Her testimony was hastily canceled, and she was spirited away as word of the attacks came. Thursday marked a return engagement.