WASHINGTON - National Education Association President Lily Eskelsen García released the following statement responding to USA Today reporting that Donald Trump will once again call on Congress to divert public school funding into voucher programs in his upcoming State of the Union address:
“Our students deserve better than Donald Trump’s and Betsy DeVos’s failed education agenda, centered on diverting funding away from neighborhood public schools and into private school voucher programs.
“Ask any educator – the professionals who know the names of the students in the classroom – and they will tell you that if we are serious about every student’s future, we need to do what we know works to improve our children’s education. Rather than starving resources from the public schools that 90 percent of America’s students attend, we need to properly resource our neighborhood public schools. Students deserve to have inviting classrooms, a well-rounded curriculum, updated textbooks, class sizes that are small enough for one-on-one attention, and support services such as health care, nutrition, and after-school programs for students who need them.
“But since taking office DeVos – the least qualified Secretary of Education in our nation’s history – has sought to dismantle the promise of public education. She and this administration have sought to cut $9 billion from our public schools. And they have focused their efforts on attacking students and educators rather than supporting opportunities for our students.
“Thankfully, bipartisan majorities in Congress, along with parents and voters across the country, have consistently rejected the Trump/DeVos agenda knowing that our country has a responsibility to provide a great neighborhood public school for every student.”