The Issue: Education
Teacher shortages are at a critical stage, due to inadequate pay for teachers, lack of respect for these essential educators and the devaluation of professionalism and expertise teachers bring to their jobs and to our students everyday. I will work with current and new legislators to put plans in place to target some of the 18.4 billion dollars to enhance recruitment and retention in the 86th district and to bring resources to support our dedicated teaching professionals, to further the educational experience for students, teachers and parents. Everyone deserves, and our community relies, on high quality education.
I fully support continuing our STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math) and Healthcare educational programs to improve opportunities in information technology, for nursing and doctors, and our innovative manufacturing and design sectors. We can also explore apprenticeships and mentoring programs to give students “real world” experiences so that they may enter the workforce prepared, enthusiastic and motivated.
I will also work towards increasing funding for mental health professionals and services in our schools and throughout our community. The impacts of the pandemic will be felt for years, and we must be acting on addressing those impacts NOW, and wait until issues arise later.
Preparing kids and parents for starting school is critical. Advocating for state funding for FREE preschool will be pivotal especially for families that fall into the ALICE (Asset Limited Income Constrained and Employed) threshold.