Ensuring Quality Education
A quality education system is the key to a strong America, from excellence in our K-12 systems to our world-renowned colleges and universities. As the son of two educators and father of three children, I understand just how important education is for the future.
As your Senator, I’ve been a strong advocate ensuring education is our top priority. Education should receive the first dollar of state spending, not the last dime.
In the last state budget, we increased education funding by a billion dollars.
In the decade before I became Vice-Chair of the Senate Budget Committee, non-education spending was growing at more than twice the rate of education spending. My budgets reversed that trend.
I’m proud to have helped start all-day Kindergarten for students in Spokane and to have led the charge to stop tuition increases at EWU, WSU and Spokane Community Colleges for two years in a row! That hasn’t happened for nearly 30 years.
However, improving education isn’t just about spending more money. To get our education system back up to the top, we need serious changes that start with government. Here are some of my education priorities:
1.) Make real reforms that benefit students, attract the best teachers and get parents more involved with their kids’ education.
2.) Focus education where the jobs are. A good education should lead to a good job, which means more specialized training and fundamentals in math and science.
3.) Expand access to community colleges and trade schools.
4.) Reduce the cost of college. When I went to WSU, it cost me about $3,000 per year. Today’s students and their families must pay over $10,000 and graduates face enormous debt loads. It’s not right. We need to make college in Washington affordable again.