A child’s success should not be determined by their zip code, socioeconomic status or race. Sara believes that each child in this country deserves a high-quality education, including early childhood education. Sara has always been deeply committed to bettering our education system – she was initially inspired to run for the Maine State Legislature after volunteering in schools in her community.
“When we talk about education, we must address the accessibility of higher education. We’ve encouraged our kids to go to college, and now many are graduating with student debt that they cannot afford to pay. Sara passed the Maine Student Bill of Rights to address the affordability of higher education, and to help put a stop to predatory lending here in Maine. I know that she will continue to work in Washington to make higher education more accessible for all students.”
–Rachel Buck, Peru
She also understands the challenges many face in continuing their education beyond elementary and high school, whether it be at a four-year university, or in a technical or trade program. College, community college, trade and technical programs should be accessible for anyone who wants to pursue the next step in their education, but too often cost prevents today’s students from reaching their full potential and preparing for successful careers.
Sara recognizes that we must address the student debt crisis that forces young people to make impossible financial choices, often before they even complete high school, and leaves them starting their careers with decades worth of debt. Across Maine, countless adults remain saddled with student loan debt, even years or decades after leaving school, dictating the choices they make about their lives every day.
Throughout her time in the Maine House of Representatives, Sara has worked to expand access to quality education for all students. She passed the Maine Student Bill of Rights to protect students from predatory student loan lenders as Maine student debt reached $6 billion. She also voted to crack down on for-profit colleges and universities in Maine to ensure they meet educational standards and negotiated the 2017 budget that made the largest investment in K-12 education in recent state history, including driving more funds to low-income districts. She expanded access to early childhood education and understanding the vital role teachers play in our kids’ lives, passed legislation to raise teacher pay. Sara’s efforts expanded access to quality education for Mainers across the state and strengthened Maine’s public education systems for future generations.
Sara knows how important access is when it comes to education – as a senator, she will work to:
- Ensure that every family has the opportunity to receive a high quality K-12 education no matter their neighborhood, family circumstances or race;
- Expand early childhood education and quality childcare opportunities;
- Value teachers and the job they do in the form of higher wages and better benefits;
- Lower the cost of college and tackle the student loan debt crisis to make higher education affordable and accessible for everyone; and
- Expand access to trade, technical and job training programs.