(CNN) – President Barack Obama had a message on Saturday which some students may prefer to ignore: summer is nearly over, and the school year is about to begin.
Obama spoke on education in his weekly address, calling for action from Congress to "prevent further (teacher) layoffs and rehire teachers who'd lost their jobs."
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On the Republican side, presidential candidate Mitt Romney delivered what his campaign billed as his first weekly podcast, where he drove home criticism of Obama over Medicare. Rep. Vicky Hartzler of Missouri separately delivered a Republican address in which she also criticized Obama over Medicare as well as the way Obama and Senate Democrats have handled federal budgeting and the expansive drought.
"A lot was riding on this (farmer assistance) bill, but the Senate, a body controlled by the president's party, left Washington for the month of August without even bringing it to a vote," she said.
"The president has seen to politicize this issue, but the fact is he didn't urge the Senate to act," she continued. "Drought conditions continue to worsen, and the shaky state of the economy only amplifies our anxiety."
She went on to suggest that Senate Democrats were asleep at the wheel on a host of other issues, including the fiscal cliff, jobs creation, and budgeting.
Obama also expressed frustration with Capitol Hill in his remarks, but his gripes were with Republicans.
"Teachers matter," he said. "But here's the thing: this year, several thousand fewer educators will be going back to school. Since 2009, we've lost more than 300,000 education jobs, in part because of budget cuts at the state and local level."
Obama repeated his call for Congress to pass his jobs bill, a collection of measures including funding for local governments to hire teachers.
He also touted the student loan legislation he supported, saying that "higher education can not be a luxury – it's an economic necessity every family should be able to afford."
Obama is set to campaign in New Hampshire on Saturday, while Romney will be in Massachusetts fundraising. Romney's running mate, Wisconsin Rep. Paul Ryan, will hold a campaign event in Florida on Saturday and Congress is on recess for the month.