Education is a lifelong commitment that begins with early childhood education and does not end. Students, parents, teachers, administrators, and policymakers must work together toward the goal of providing every child in America with access to a free, complete, and excellent education.
Our classrooms must have the most qualified and effective teachers with small class sizes. All students need to graduate with a well-rounded education ready for a career or college, and schools need to provide counselors who will give guidance for both paths. Higher education must be accessible and affordable for all students who choose to further their studies.
Federal policy and funding can either be a barrier or a bridge to ensure success. With No Child Left Behind, we’ve seen how the federal government can create obstacles in K-12 education. We’ve seen states lower their standards to comply, punishing high-standard states, including Minnesota. That’s why we must get it right this time and do better without imposing anymore unfunded mandates.
The federal government has a responsibility to address the needs of underserved students and provide educational equality for all students. As a mother, former teacher, and strong supporter of public education, I’ve made education a priority by protecting funding we know works – like Individuals with Disabilities Act (IDEA), Pell grants, and Title 1 grants for students who are disadvantaged.