Issues

Public Education

I believe in a strong public education system and will work to empower public schools with the tools they need to mold successful students into successful adults. Alaska has been battling budget cuts to education and teacher benefits being reduced year after year. This MUST end. I will fight for education funding on the federal level while maintaining autonomy of states and school districts outlined in the Every Student Succeeds Act. 

Students, teachers, and schools have been greatly impacted by COVID-19. School districts across the country are using different methods of dealing with the pandemic because of the lack of leadership. Teachers have joined nurses, doctors, and first responders on the front lines of this pandemic. Teachers and support staff need to have a senator who will lead the country in proper safety precautions and ensure they are receiving the proper equipment to teach safely. 

My plan to help Alaskan educators, Alaskan students and Alaska schools: 

  • Partner with Local Communities, Not More Testing from Washington. 
    • Al supports the Every Student Succeeds Act and knows that the only way for this law to be more effective than No Child Left Behind is to stop the Washington first approach and instead work with educators and families.  We don’t need more testing mandates; we need more support from Washington.
  • Oppose Betsy DeVos’ Agenda
    • Al opposes Betsy DeVos and her devastating policies on vouchers and higher education. Senator Sullivan voted to confirm her.
    • Al supports our rural school system and will oppose any effort to waste valuable resources on taxpayer funded school vouchers.
    • Al will also hold DeVos accountable on loan forgiveness and allowing for-profit colleges that fleece students.
  • Supports Collective Bargaining for Educators
  • Broadband expansion and connectivity for rural Alaska. 
    • Secure federal funding for expansion of broadband connections to rural Alaska and ensure accessibility to fast reliable internet for all rural schools by 2030. 
    • Co-sign and pass the Office of Rural Broadband Act (S.454) or draft a bill with the same content to ensure proper oversight to broadband expansion. 
  • Build Federal Funding for Education
    • Federal funds to DEED are 2.2. times more than state funding in the last fiscal year and 4.3 times more than Undesignated General Funds. Al plans to continue to bring federal money to help where state funding falls short.
  • Forward Funding Education
    • The year to year anxiety of not knowing the budget that teachers are going to be forced to work with or worse, get laid off from. Al fully supports forward funding of education and allowing teachers to work without having to worry about their job at the end of every school year.