A New Deal for
Public Education

As a DC Public School mom, I know the fear and uncertainty parents across the city face as we send our kids back to school amid COVID-19 and the frustration of dealing with a bureaucratic school system that doesn’t listen to our needs. I believe our public schools are not isolated institutions; they are central to the well-being of our kids, families, and communities. Our children, parents, and teachers deserve a responsive school system that addresses their needs and provides support and services that make it possible for every child to succeed.

 

We must have public schools that enable our children to achieve a quality education regardless of where they live or the school they attend. DC needs a New Deal for public education built on policy choices that dismantle the historical harm of structural inequalities and puts the needs of kids, families, and teachers first.

 

I will work to:

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  • Reestablish the Council’s Education Committee. Our children’s education deserves focused attention that only a dedicated oversight committee can provide.

  • Address the needs and concerns of families and teachers in navigating the challenges of COVID-19. We must listen to and learn from the experiences of our students, families, and teachers to strengthen policy choices that provide the safest alternatives for long-term recovery.

  • Advance a governance structure for the Office of the State Superintendent of Education independent of Mayoral control. We must have independent and accountable oversight of our schools.

  • Invest in a New Deal for public schools that centers on creating an environmentally healthy school environment. Our teachers and children deserve academic environments that prioritize environmental justice and are conducive to teaching and learning. A New Deal in public schools will install energy-efficient windows, electric heat pumps, and renewable energy rooftops to reduce energy consumption and transition to net-zero energy consumption. A New Deal in public schools will also prioritize green retrofitting and school modernization projects that first target the most at-risk schools.

  • Advocate for reducing student-to-staff ratios in schools and expanding the availability of services like school psychologists, nurses, and counselors that take a whole-child

  • Fight for transportation policies that make our children’s passage to and from schools and throughout our communities safe. I will support transportation policies built on economic, racial, and climate justice, including zero-emission school bus fleets, pedestrian safe infrastructure, and safe cycling infrastructure. Every student deserves to be able to navigate their way to school and throughout community spaces safely.

  • Work to develop new educational financing models that close the school funding gap between our communities and end a system that too often leaves schools in Wards 7 and 8 with shrinking budgets and trying to save basic positions like librarians.

  • Demand schools eliminate policies that continue the historical inequities in our school communities; this means instead of punitive disciplinary processes and procedures, investing in restorative justice, research-based interventions, and trauma-informed care.

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