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Seth Moulton on Education

 

 


Reform public education testing & teaching standards

One of the first things we can do to improve our public schools is encourage our most promising graduates to pursue teaching, and treat them fairly once they join the profession. We must enable teachers to be treated as the professionals that they are while demanding the highest standards of excellence from them.

Clearly articulated national standards and core subject area expectations are crucial to education reform. However, the reality is that school districts in the US are incredibly diverse. Local districts should be allowed to embrace their unique situations by being able to determine the path their students take to reach national standards. I support the implementation of more holistic standards for public education. National standards must include graduation rates, community impact, and after-school involvement. We cannot effectively reform public education without measuring meaningful data sets that go beyond students' score on important exams.

Source: 2014 House campaign website, SethMoulton.com , Sep 1, 2014

Supports Common Core, according to Faith2Action.

Moulton supports the F2A survey question on education reforms

Faith2Action.org is "the nation's largest network of pro-family groups." They provide election resources for each state, including Voter Guides and Congressional Scorecards excerpted here. The F2A survey summarizes candidate stances on the following topic: 'Education: Do you support requiring states to implement education reforms in order to be eligible for competitive federal grants?'

Source: Faith2Action Survey 14-F2A-Q7 on Jul 30, 2014

Supports Common Core, according to PVS rating.

Moulton supports the PVS survey question on education reforms

Project VoteSmart infers summary responses from campaign statements and news reports The PVS survey summarizes candidate stances on the following topic: 'Education: Do you support requiring states to implement education reforms in order to be eligible for competitive federal grants?'

Source: Project VoteSmart Inferred Survey 14-PVS-q7 on Sep 30, 2014

No-strings-attached block grant will kill transparency.

Moulton voted NAY A-PLUS Amendment To Student Success Act

Heritage Action Summary: An amendment offered by Rep. Mark Walker (R-NC) and Rep. Ron DeSantis (R-FL) to the Student Success Act (H.R. 5). The amendment, known as A-PLUS (Academic Partnerships Lead Us to Success), would give the states the ability to consolidate their federal education funds and use them for any lawful education purpose they deem beneficial.

Heritage Foundation recommendation to vote YES: (7/8/2015): A-PLUS lets states escape No Child Left Behind's prescriptive programmatic requirements. At its core, A-PLUS delivers on the promise of "restoring state and local control over the 10% of education funding financed by the federal government," moving dollars out of the hands of federal bureaucrats and political appointees and into the hands of those closer to the students. Now is the time for Congress to restore federalism in education, empower parents and students instead of bureaucrats and unions, and remove archaic obstacles that have prevented true opportunity for all.

US News and World Report recommendation to vote NO: (4/7/2015): A-PLUS [is intended as] a no-strings-attached block grant. There isn't all that much the federal government can do well in education, but it's because of federally-required transparency that charter schools and voucher schools can demonstrate that they work. For example, New York City's Success Academy scores in the top 1% of all the state's public schools in math and in the top 3% in English. When Success Academy came under fire from teachers' union-backed Mayor Bill de Blasio, it was able to fight back with numbers to prove it. If a strong-union state were to receive a no-strings-attached block grant, transparency would be the first thing to go. A no-strings-attached block grant is an overreaction to federal overreach.

Legislative outcome: Failed House 195 to 235 (no Senate vote)

Source: Supreme Court case 15-H0005 argued on Jul 8, 2015

Oppose private and religious school voucher programs.

Moulton voted NAY SOAR Act

Heritage Action Summary: The House will vote to reauthorize the Scholarships for Opportunity and Results (SOAR) Act (H.R. 10). The bill would continue funding through Fiscal Year 2021 and allow eligible students in Washington, D.C. to enroll in a participating private school.Analysis by Heritage Action:

ACLU recommendation to vote NO: (Letter to U.S.House, 3/29/2011): The ACLU urges Congress to oppose the SOAR Act, legislation to restart and expand Washington DC's failed private and religious school voucher pilot program. Originally started as a five-year pilot program in 2004, the DC voucher program is the nation's first and only federally-funded private and religious school voucher program. Under the federal voucher pilot program, funds were provided to schools even though they infuse their curricular materials with specific religious content and even though they are not covered by many of the nation's civil rights statutes that would otherwise protect students against discrimination. Additionally, each of the congressionally-mandated studies to explore the pilot program concluded that the voucher program had no significant effect on the academic achievement.

Cato Institute recommendation to vote YES: (4/28/2016): The Obama administration has repeatedly worked to undermine or eliminate the DC school choice program, even though it has the support of local Democratic politicians such as the DC Mayor and a majority of the DC City Council. Low-income students shouldn't be condemned to low-quality schools just because their parents cannot afford a home in a wealthy neighborhood. The DC program was an important step toward breaking the link between home prices and school quality.

Legislative outcome: Passed by the House 240-191-3; never came to a vote in the Senate.

Source: Supreme Court case 15-H0010 argued on Oct 21, 2015

Make two years of community college free.

Moulton signed making two years of community college free

Excerpts from press release from Tammy Baldwin, Senate sponsor: The America's College Promise Act makes two years of community college free by:

Community, technical, and tribal colleges enroll 40% of all college students today. Community colleges are uniquely positioned to partner with employers to create tailored training programs to meet economic needs within their communities such as nursing and advanced manufacturing.

Opposing argument: (Cato Institute, "College Courtesy of the Taxpayer? No Thanks," Jan. 9, 2015): One look at either community college outcomes or labor market outlooks reveals free college to be educational folly. Community college completion rates are atrocious: a mere 19.5% of community college students complete their programs. Meanwhile, the for-profit sector has an almost 63% completion rate. And [about 70%] of the new job categories in coming years will require a high school diploma or less.

Opposing argument: (Heritage Foundation, "Free Community College Is a Bad Deal", July 15, 2016): Free college proposals would subject community colleges to the same types of subsidies-induced inflation endemic at four-year institutions. And low-income students already have access to federal Pell Grants, which can cover the bulk of community college tuition. By contrast, a more open market of alternative schooling models, such as online or vocational education programs, could better tailor degrees at a lower cost.

Source: S.1716 & H.R.2962 15-H2962 on Jul 8, 2015

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Page last updated: Mar 15, 2019