We care about providing a quality education to all of our children across New York. I am especially concerned with federal intrusion of our local schools through efforts like Common Core. Last Congress we introduced legislation that would allow parents to opt their children out of ridiculous testing standards through Common Core without negatively impacting their local school districts. I believe that local control of education by students, parents, and teachers will allow our children to thrive and succeed. We need to empower our local communities, not Washington, DC.
The costs of college has continued to rise over the past two decades well above the rates of inflation and even healthcare! This puts a tremendous burden on our middle class families who make just enough to not qualify for a lot of federal aid, but certainly not enough to afford a $35,000 plus check every year. As student debt balloons to over $1.3 trillion, and an average student graduates with over $30,000 of debt, we need to do more.
In December of 2016, we released “Our Vision for Students” which outlines the steps necessary to dramatically lower the cost of education for students. It includes policies that would have both immediate and longer term impacts. It includes items like requiring schools with large endowments to spend more on tuition assistance for middle class families and extending programs like Perkins Loans.