(Washington, D.C.) – U.S. Senator Patty Murray (D-WA), ranking member of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee, released the following statement on reports that the White House will release a proposal to advance their ideological privatization agenda, including direct funding to private schools and a national tax credit scholarship proposal, or their so called “Education Freedom Scholarship."
“Right now, our public education system is facing unprecedented challenges—public schools are scrambling to implement safety protocols with limited funds, millions of education jobs are on the line due to looming budget shortfalls, and families across the country are struggling with a chaotic, uncertain reality.
“Democrats want to invest in helping public schools, students, and educators come back stronger and address longstanding inequities. Meanwhile, Secretary DeVos and President Trump are using this pandemic as an excuse to push an ideological privatization agenda that would divert much-needed funds away from our public schools that serve approximately 90% of students across the country.
“On the anniversary of Civil Rights Act of 1964, it’s also important to note the pandemic has exacerbated severe racial inequities that have long existed in our education system. If Republicans have any sincere interest in addressing these inequities, they should show it by working with Democrats to invest in public education and address systemic racism rather than siphoning resources away when they’re needed more than ever.”