Over the past thirty years, programs such as Race To The Top, No Child Left Behind and Common Core has stripped the fundamental rights of states to manage public education. Under the Constitution, states have control over providing public education to students. The 9th and 10th Amendments stipulate the national government should stay away from setting curricula and testing standards. As your next United States Senator, I will push to end Common Core to return authority of education to the people of Maryland!
The role of the national government in K-12 education should be to provide construction funding to build good schools to make sure every child has equal access to a quality learning environment. One of my goals, as your next United States Senator, is to use the resources of the Department of Education to provide block grants to states to make our schools more secure. States should remain the driving force in teacher training, school district evaluation and setting curricula standards
Higher Education is different from K-12 in how it is funded. K-12 is funded directly through tax revenue, usually property taxes. Higher Education is a pay for use service initiated by the student to receive instruction in a college major. Unfortunately, over the past two decades a disturbing trend has emerged, the training received from these institutions has not met the real-world opportunities in the workplace.
The current relationship between government and institutions of higher education is partly to blame for this current, unsustainable problem. This current model has shifted the balance of career / technical training and universities based upon a liberal arts education. Institutions of higher education received tax payer revenues in a variety of ways – student loan funding for tuition and fees, capital funding for new buildings, and grants for academic research on a variety of topics.
One would think with that many funding avenues tuition costs to students would be reasonable. Instead, the opposite has taken place over the last thirty years. Loans which are used to help pay for tuition, fees and other costs of attending universities have helped justify substantial the steady rise in education costs. Every year, tens of thousands of college students graduate with massive loan debts with no job prospects in sight.
I believe it is time for taxpayers and students to ask for reasonable tuition rates. Institutions of higher education, who receive government funding (student loans, grants and capital funding) should set reasonable tuition rates to allow for every student to achieve their goal of a four year college degree. As your next United States Senator, I will lead the fight to demand any future tuition increases must be approved by the voters of the state via referendum.