( – promoted by lowkell)
During the 2011 elections, it was well documented here on Blue Virginia what the true goals of GOP majorities in the state legislature would be. And, true to form, they’ve delivered on their agenda of suppressing voting rights, jeopardizing women’s health, discriminating against the LGBT community, and sacrificing public safety on behalf of the gun lobby. What adds insult to injury is that, while we wait to see if there are any limits to the GOP’s extremism, we’re not even bothering to have a discussion about issues that voters told me meant the most to them and their families. Chief among these concerns was education. This is an issue in desperate need of leadership by Democrats right now. Gov. McDonnell’s budget proposal continues to erode our Commonwealth’s commitment to public education from kindergarten through college, providing no new investment in our classrooms and using education funds to pay for roads.
Since the election, I’ve been working with Mike Signer and the New Dominion Project (NDP) on developing a smarter approach to public investment in education. This blueprint addresses every aspect of our education system, including both K-12 and post-secondary education. It focuses on making investments in our teachers, making improvements to curricula, and re-thinking our approach to partnerships with the private sector. And, it doesn’t ignore the growing problem of ensuring that all of Virginia’s families can get affordable access to a quality education. The NDP will begin rolling-out these new ideas in the next few weeks and I want to invite you to join us. We’ll be holding two panel discussions, one for K-12 and one for post-secondary education. Please check out the details below! You’ll be able to follow each event on the NDP twitter feed, @newdominionproj, or on Facebook. •On February 21st, we'll release NDP's first Strategy Paper, titled “Opportunity, Innovation, Investment: Bringing Higher Ed into the Future” at a panel including Senator Barbara Favola (D-Arlington), Senator John Edwards (D-Roanoke), and Peter Blake, Director of the State Council on Higher Education for Virginia. Time/place: 9:00 – 10:00 a.m., Room 3E, General Assembly Building, 1000 Bank St., Richmond. •On March 7, we'll release our second NDP Strategy Paper, titled “Excellence, Equity, Opportunity: K-12 Education Reform” in a panel including Abby Raphael, Chair of the Arlington County School Board, Andy Rotherham, Time Magazine columnist and Partner, Bellwether Education Partners, and Dmitri Mehlhorn, COO of Students First. Time/place: 7:00 p.m., Arlington County Democratic Committee, NRECA Building, 4301 Wilson Blvd., Arlington.