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Public Statements

Issue Position: Education

Issue Position

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Date:
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* I believe that we need to fight for our schools, for our quality teachers, and for high standards for our students.
* I will work to stop educator turnover by fighting for reasonable salaries and benefits for our teachers. This will help us maintain teachers for continuity in the classroom, end wasted spending on cyclical teacher recruitment, recoup our investment in teacher training, and reverse the trend in expanding class size. Twenty years ago Alaska had one of the strongest teacher retention rates in the country. I will work to restore that high standard.

* I believe in affordable post-secondary education to make sure that our children are able to find jobs in an increasingly competitive global market.
* I will support our University of Alaska system and work to fund the University so that tuition costs can be held in check. I will also explore the development of a topflight liberal arts college within the UAA system, in order to encourage our top students to remain in Alaska.

* I believe education goes beyond the classroom and that government-sponsored education is never the only answer. While I support alternatives like charter schools, I believe that we must not drain support away from our public school system. Instead, our legislators have a responsibility to help develop creative solutions to the challenges our schools face.
* I will seek out an active public dialogue on credible proposals for strengthening Alaska's school system, ranging from vocational programs to school year expansion. The point is: we need to be proactive about fixing education in Alaska.


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