Education is a human right. I was a substitute teacher for two years and a college instructor for two years before that. I’ve seen how hard teachers work and how underappreciated they are. They work for such little pay, yet they care so much for their students. It’s a teacher caring about me (hey, Ms. Rogerson at Byrd Elementary!) in first grade who channeled my love of learning into a love for school. My love for school dropped over the years as teachers were increasingly forced to “teach to the test”—an effect of Bush’s No Child Left Behind Act.
As a substitute teacher, I also saw what an important role schools play—they act in many ways as a second family for students, providing breakfast, lunch, and food during the summer for many students. And I saw how much your zip code determines what resources you get. If you’re born in a poor part of town, you get crumbling schools and overcrowded classrooms. I am an unabashed supporter of public education. We must increase funding to public schools and make them safe, supportive learning environments for all students—not sell off our system to private, profit-driven enterprises.
As your member of Congress, I will fight for: