The Congressional primaries may be a mess in North Carolina, but voting for your presidential preference and other statewide races is still on for March 15.
Just in time, Education Week has offered a pretty handy primer on the presidential candidates’ education policies. In lieu of policies—since Donald Trump doesn’t really issue those—the primer gives us some statements the candidates have made.
Among the Democrats, Hillary Clinton may have the somewhat controversial backing of the National Education Association and the American Federation of Teachers, but Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders has generated his own K-12 buzz.
From the Ed Week report on Sanders:
He doesn’t have the long-standing relationship with minority voters that his chief rival, Hillary Clinton, is said to have. But he’s trying to take on issues that are important to those communities. For instance, on his campaign website, he addresses opportunity gaps in K-12 education, noting that black students are far more likely to be suspended or taught by a first-year teacher than their white peers are. And he’s pitched moving away from property taxes to a more equal system of funding education. Plus, Sanders has talked about the power of education to combat crime. “It makes eminently more sense to invest in jobs and education than jails and incarceration,” he said at a campaign rally in Springfield, Mass., last year. He’s also said that government jobs could help dismantle the school-to-prison pipeline.
Meanwhile, among the GOP, the report points out multiple candidates, notably Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio, have been adamant about major funding cuts or completely sacking the U.S. Department of Education altogether, shuttling standards and practices to the states.
Trump, meanwhile, is not such a fan of the nation’s public schools either.
From the report:
Trump at a rally in Tulsa, Okla.,blasted U.S. students for performing poorly on international tests compared to their peers, including some from countries he told the audience “you’ve never heard of.” It’s true that on the Program for International Student Assessment (PISA), American students have not performed particularly well, although the majority of countries that outperform the U.S. are developed nations, not the “Third World” countries Trump referenced in his speech.