The Hanlon Education Plan
Karl Hanlon has been an outspoken advocate for public education. From walking the picket line with underpaid teachers in Pueblo, to advocating for affordable teacher and employee housing, updated curriculum, and safety improvements to schools locally, he has made education among his top priorities.
“In Congress, I will stand up to Donald Trump and bring bold ideas to the national debate. Across the western slope and southern Colorado, people know that the Trump-Tipton agenda is wrong for our state. On day one, I will push to remove Education Secretary Betsy DeVos from office and begin the hard work of tackling the real challenges facing our educators, students and parents.”
PURSUING FEDERAL PROGRAMS TO IMPROVE ACCESS TO COMMUNITY COLLEGE
Improving access to community colleges providing essential training and core college curriculum is another way to help mitigate the rising cost of a traditional college education for students that wouldn’t otherwise seek a four-year degree. The expansion of community colleges is a way to bridge the gap between high school and needed skills for good paying jobs.
OPPOSING CUTS TO PUBLIC EDUCATION
In Congress, I will stand up to Donald Trump and oppose proposals like his budget which slashes funding to high-poverty schools and teacher training programs. Allowing Congressional Republicans to follow this agenda will hurt schools across Colorado that depend on class size reduction initiatives and after school programs. It has to be stopped, and I will make stopping Trump and his backwards budgeting among my highest priorities.
KEEPING SCHOOLS SAFE
Not only will I work to keep our children safe from the scourge of gun violence through common-sense reforms like background checks and an outright ban on assault weapons, but there is also work to be done to ensure improved learning environments for our kids. In Congress, I will support legislation like the Safe Schools Improvement Act. This smart legislation will require schools that receive ESEA funding to conform to put a stop to bullying and report such data to the federal Department of Education.
SUPPORTING SUPERIOR K-12 EDUCATORS
There are currently more than 50-million students in K-12 public schools and over 3.2 million teachers nationally. In the United States, we are facing a critical teacher shortage and funding for federal mandates discouragingly low. In order to address these pressing issues, we should be taking steps to incentivize the pursuit of teaching as a profession, while also encouraging our best and brightest teachers to work in our rural and lower-income school districts. As a nation, we must prioritize education and ensure that our teachers are supported with livable wages and the supplies they need to educate our children.
In Congress, I will work to improve the transparency in how schools and school districts across the country utilize the funding they receive. We must continue to work to ensure that teachers receive the pay and benefits they need and that as many resources as possible are being put into classrooms where they will have a direct impact on our children’s education.
FUNDING THE INDIVIDUAL DISABILITY IN EDUCATION ACT (I.D.E.A.)
Many school districts currently struggle to meet the requirements of the Individual Disability in Education Act (IDEA). IDEA guarantees that students with disabilities have access to the same educational opportunities as any other student. However, the burden of funding IDEA falls to local school districts, many of which are struggling financially, particularly across the third congressional district of Colorado. In order to ensure the needs of all students are being met, the federal government must fully fund IDEA compliance. In Congress, I will prioritize this effort and work to ease the burden on school districts across the western slope and southern Colorado.
SOLVING THE SHORTAGE IN TEACHERS
We face a critical teacher shortage across rural Colorado. Encouraging and promoting teaching as a profession requires new solutions, which I intend to advance in Congress. I am committed to creating a national scholarship program to fully fund four-years at any public college or university in exchange for a six-year commitment by a new educator to take a teaching job in a rural or low-income school district.
COMMITTING TO EXCELLENCE IN OUR PUBLIC SCHOOLS
School choice is a hotly-debated topic where private and public schools exist within communities. While I have no objection to parents and students choosing private schools we, as taxpayers, should not be subsidizing those choices whether through vouchers or tax breaks or incentives.
REFORMING HIGHER EDUCATION
Student loan debt is an issue in need of being addressed; but it remains stalled due to political polarization in Washington. I will commit to working tirelessly to advance this issue and make college affordable for every American.
Specifically, I will support proposals like, the Bank on Students Emergency Loan Refinancing Act, which would allow for students to refinance existing loans at the same rates being offered to new borrowers. I will also pursue important ideas for legislation like the Employer Participation in Student Loan Assistance Act, which would incentivize employers to pursue tuition assistance programs for employees.