WASHINGTON — U.S. Secretary of Education Amid K-12 Teacher Shortages, Book Bans, and Attacks on Critical Racial Theory Miguel Cardona At a press conference on Wednesday, he stressed the need for higher salaries to attract future educators into the profession.
Cardona also said the Biden administration’s Recent Student Debt Relief Announcements Late August.the white house said President Joe Biden has reduced federal student loan debt up to $20,000 for Pell Grant borrowers with personal income less than $125,000 and household income less than $250,000, and up to $10,000 for all other borrowers. to cancel.
But Cardona acknowledged that the one-time student loan cancellation policy doesn’t address the root causes of the student loan crisis and “it doesn’t solve the long-term problem.”
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Cardona spoke to reporters at a breakfast sponsored by the Christian Science Monitor as the Biden administration prepares to tout its success ahead of the midterm elections.
Cardona said teacher salaries are a key issue at the K-12 level.
“Look, I want to recruit students,” he said. Don’t think, “If I become a teacher, he’ll have to drive an Uber on the weekends, or waitress on the weekends to make ends meet.” that is not acceptable. ”
He pointed to Montana, home to the National Education Association Teachers Union. study A study released in April found that the average starting salary for teachers is $32,495, the lowest in the nation. Cardona added that many teachers pay for school supplies out of their own pockets.
“If we’re serious about lifting professions, if we’re serious about lifting education, we have to invest in educators,” he said. An investment in educators is an investment in students.”
While not all school districts are experiencing teacher shortages, and some may be short of subjects taught, there are now 567,000 fewer teachers in America’s public schools than before the pandemic.according to the analysis by NEA. Also, nearly every state in the United States reported a decline in public education jobs. research from Pew Charitable Trust.
And according to a recent study, teachers in Arizona face the biggest wage penalties of any state in the nation, with teachers here earning about 32% less than other workers with college degrees. I understand.
Cardona didn’t specifically address recent controversial state laws like Florida that ban teachers from teaching about race and LGBTQ+ issues. ‘You can’t say you’re gay’ lawor how conservative media like Fox News broadcast segment the teacher as “predatory grooming”
Conservative activists and predominantly white parents too forced a lie that schools teach important racial theories, which are systematic academic frameworks Racism is built into the legal system.K-12 schools don’t teach important racial theories.
Many school districts also had drives restrict hundreds of booksThe majority of these bans target books written by authors who feature characters from people of color, LGBTQ+, Black, Indigenous and marginalized groups.
Recently, an Oklahoma teacher resigned from her job following complaints from parents after telling her students that they could pick up an online library card from the New York City library. of the Brooklyn Public Library Books Unlocking Project to access Books banned by school district.
Oklahoma’s Secretary of Education Ryan Walters has asked the state board of education to revoke his teaching certificate. NPR reported.
Regarding student debt, Cardona said policy initiatives supported by the Department of Education to ease the burden include increased Pell grants, reforms Income-Based Student Loan Repaymentrevamped the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program to provide transparency to students and parents about the return on investment offered by attending a particular college.
Civil Service Loan Forgiveness ProgramAccording to the Department of Education, after making 120 qualifying monthly payments under a qualifying repayment plan while working full-time for a qualifying employer, the remainder of the direct loan balance will be forgiven. website.
“You know, the days of going to college, leaving $150,000 in debt and then getting a job and paying $35,000 a year doesn’t work,” Cardona said. “We must provide parents with more information and transparency so they know which agencies to consider for their children.”
Over 43 million Americans have student loan debt and the Federal Reserve Estimate Total student loan debt in the United States exceeds $1.75 trillion.
Higher education tuition fees are Mainly set by local agencies Commissions such as the State Board of Education and the State Legislature. College tuition inflation averaged 4.63% annually from 2010 to 2020. Education Data Initiativewhich collects data and statistics about the U.S. education system.
“It’s my intention to bring to the table the university presidents and the associations that manage or represent them,” Cardona said.
Cardona said one tool the Department of Education has to deal with high tuition fees is institutions’ college scorecardprovides prospective students and parents with data on college costs, graduation rates, and post-college earnings.
He also said the federal government “can provide support and funding to institutions that we believe not only provide an inclusive environment, but also provide an excellent return on investment.” said.
“And with those colleges, we might try to come up with different practices and work with our partners at Hill to make our colleges accessible to everyone across the country. students,” he said.
back to school tour
Cardona is set to kick off Tours He and Mrs. Jill Biden accompany the first two visits, visiting schools to learn how communities are helping students recover and thrive after the coronavirus pandemic has caused massive school closures. indicates whether
The first stop is Knoxville, Tennessee, where Cardona and the First Lady see how the state has approached recruiting and retaining educators.
analysis According to the NEA, which influences state and national Democratic politics and lobbying on education policy, “55% of educators indicate they are ready to leave the profession they love earlier than planned.” I found coronavirus pandemic.
Bureau of Labor Statistics In a 2018 study predicts that an average of 100,000 primary school teachers will leave the profession each year from 2016 to 2026.
Cardona also traveled to Pennsylvania, where he and the Second Gentleman Douglas Emhoff highlights how schools continue to help students recover from learning losses and access mental health support, and how teachers and government agencies are paying off debt through the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program. Talk about how you can get relief.
he also visits the school North Carolina, Virginia, West Virginia, New Jersey.