As a homegrown graduate of our public schools, and a college instructor, education is a major priority for me. I want Oregon to reclaim our standing as a place of excellence for our students, teachers, and parents. A robust economy and engaged electorate depend upon accessibility to high quality, innovative educational opportunities. Below are commitments that I made and a report of the progress we have made in the Oregon Legislature during the 2015 and 2016 Legislative sessions.
- “QEM-Plus 3” baseline funding formula: implementation of Quality Education Model funding targets with additional above baseline support for community developed workforce development priorities
- Mandatory “Civics” curriculum (12-year program for students at each grade level)
- Maximum Class sizes, maximum student-teacher-support staff ratios, and mandatory teacher training support requirements
- Statewide investments in regional workforce priorities through community colleges, trade apprenticeships, and benchmark private/public partnership incubators
- State-sponsored incentives for community/business/retired seniors volunteer incentives
- Increased state investments in K-12 funding to $7.4 Billion;
- Increased state investments in community colleges to $530 Million and
- Increased university investments to $700 Million, which included a 28% boost for Western Oregon University;
- HB 2928 creates a task force to explore ways to reduce class sizes in our public schools;
- HB 4002 develops a statewide plan to address chronic absenteeism in K-12 schools, with policy suggestions of how we can help our students successfully complete their primary education;
- Secured $12.6 million for Western Oregon University to renovate Oregon Military Academy and Natural Science buildings;
- HB 4021 requires the State Treasurer and the Higher Education Coordinating Commission to explore ways to lower interest rates on student loans;
- HB 2545 requires that schools provide free lunches for students who are eligible for reduced price lunches;
- HB 2955 administers funding for an annual conference on civics as well as creates an Oregon Civics Day for teachers.