I have always been and will continue to be a strong supporter of education. I have been endorsed by the Maryland State Education Association for every election as a Councilmember, a Delegate and now as your Senator. Education is the key to our children’s future.
This year, more than ever, the State Budget needed to fully fund education—and Maryland stepped up. State support for public schools will exceed $7.9 billion. Direct aid to local school systems will increase an estimated 6.8%, including full funding of all fiscal 2023 Blueprint for Maryland’s Future mandates.
Unfortunately, during COVID-19, many children fell behind in their academic achievement. One of the major problems was the lack of broadband across the state. To resolve this problem, the General Assembly funded an expansion of broadband so more children have access to remote learning should another health emergency arise. We need to make every effort to keep our children in school while following the direction of our health care professionals.
The Blueprint for Maryland’s Future is a plan to improve our public schools across the state of Maryland. The Blueprint is a holistic and comprehensive approach that includes robust accountability measures, expanding publicly funded Pre-K, increasing teacher salaries, ensuring all students are college and/or career ready, as well as providing support for all learners. Our businesses need skilled workers and not every student wants to go to college. Skilled workers can fill good-paying jobs in the trades like auto mechanics, electricians, construction and renewable energy. The Blueprint adds pathways for students to learn job skills and participate in apprenticeships.
We need class sizes to go down, not up, because class size is important to the overall achievement of students. Maryland provided record funding for new school construction and the last budget has fully funded our community colleges.
Education is the building block our children’s future success depends upon. It is a priority and I will continue to advocate for investment in our schools while working closely with our local Boards of Education to advocate for our students.