Strengthening Public Education


My wife, Laurel, taught public school in Hayters Gap, Greendale and Abingdon for 30 years.  Throughout her time as a Washington County teacher, she used her creativity and resourcefulness to ensure that even the kids in the smallest rural schools had opportunities to learn, whatever their backgrounds.  That’s what good public school teachers do every day.  More and more, however, their hands are tied by the combination of inadequate funding and excessive testing requirements.  It’s a double whammy that’s bad for teachers and students.

While many education decisions are made locally and much of the funding comes from the state, I’ll push for federal policies that:

  • Strengthen public schools, especially those in struggling rural and urban communities, rather than diverting resources to privatization

  • Encourage experiential learning, creativity, problem solving and applied learning in and out of the classroom

  • Support and elevate technical and vocational learning, both at high school and community college levels, to prepare people for essential trades

  • Make community college free to all

  • Dramatically reduce student debt through a combination of increased public and private grants, options for repayment through community service and reigning in of for-profit colleges