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Education

 

MARTHA McSALLY

 

MARK KELLY

K-12 Education

Martha McSally believes that the federal government should have limited involvement in public education. However, she supports diverting government funds towards education vouchers for private schools. In 2015, McSally voted for the "Every Student Succeeds Act" which replaced "No Child Left Behind," reducing the federal government's influence on school standards. McSally also backed the budget proposed by then Speaker of the House, Paul Ryan, that would have removed $3 billion in public education funding. 
 
Mark Kelly believes that the federal government should provide support for public education. In a tweet from 2019, Kelly stated that we should increase teacher's salaries and provide more resources for schools to better serve students. In an interview in August he said, "I often worry here in the state of Arizona, when you consider per-pupil spending, we're very low, and teacher salaries are very low. So, we're not investing in the future of our state." Education is a primary issue on his campaign website, where he stands with the recent Arizona teacher's push for better funding through the Red for Education movement. He also believes that we should emphasize STEM education and advanced placement courses.

Higher Education

McSally supported Paul Ryan's budget plan which would have cut funding for Pell grants and allowed student loan interest to accumulate while students were still in school. In 2017 she voted to cut funding for higher education Pell grants affecting students from low-income families. 
 
Kelly believes that there are many careers available for people as long as they have the opportunity for education beyond high school. He would like to focus on investing in post-secondary education such as apprenticeships, career training, and professional certification. Kelly would make this more affordable by increasing Pell Grant awards and lowering federal interest rates so that education is more accessible.

Re-Opening of Schools

McSally has supported the reopening of Arizona public schools, but believes that it is not a "one-size fits all." She also support Senate majority leader, Mitch McConnell's refusal to pass the HEROES act, which would have provided $100 billion specifically for K-12 and higher education along with $915 billion in state and local aid to address budget gaps that could be used to help public schools and college campuses.
 
Mark Kelly would like to re-open schools, while adhering to CDC guidelines and listening to the experts, stating that providing education to children is a crucial "investment in [Arizona's] future." As of July, Kelly stated that schools should reopen but that they should take precautions and limit the number of interactions between students.