FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
DNCC Releases Draft 2016 Platform Language Supporting Progressive Education Reform
Washington, DC – Today, the Democratic National Convention Committee (DNCC) released its draft of the 2016 Democratic Party Platform, which outlines a progressive, pro-student, pro-public education vision for our Party and our country and embraces more resources and reform in our schools. The DNC and the DNCC led one of the most inclusive platform processes in Party history, soliciting input from policy experts, local leaders, grassroots activists, and everyday Americans of all backgrounds.
DFER President Shavar Jeffries praised the Platform Drafting Committee’s work, saying:
“We are thrilled that our Party has reaffirmed its unwavering commitment to progressive education policies that help ensure every student, regardless of their zip code or their background, receives the world-class public education they deserve.
“Through this Platform, our Party reaffirms its support for high-quality public school choice – including traditional neighborhood schools and public charter schools – for every family, especially for our children in underserved communities; for a great teacher in every classroom that’s well-trained, supported and ready to inspire and develop our children on day one; for the resources we need to provide a fair shot for every child to achieve at high levels; and for creating a path to an affordable, quality higher education experience accessible for every family.
“Our next president will inherit the historic gains achieved by the Obama administration’s dual investment in substantial resources and common-sense reform in our schools, and it’s critical that our Party and our 45th president, Hillary Clinton, are ready to carry the torch of continued Democratic education reform come January 20th. This Platform draft is a critical step in that direction.
“I want to thank Chairman Cummings for his stewardship of this process and look forward to the full Platform Committee ratifying this language in Orlando next week. I also want to acknowledge the many DFER champions across the country – from our elected officials, to students, parents, activists, and educators –who shared their stories to ensure that our Party remains the party that fights for our students and their educational futures. Your voices were clearly heard.”
Below are a few key excerpts from the Platform draft:
- On Raising Standards & Strengthening Accountability: “Democrats believe that all students should be taught to high academic standards. Schools should receive adequate resources and support. We will hold schools, districts, communities, and states accountable for raising achievement levels for all students—particularly low-income students, students of color, English Language Learners, and students with disabilities.”
- On Ensuring Public School Choice & Supporting High-Quality Public Charters: “Democrats are also committed to providing parents with high-quality public school options and expanding these options for low-income youth. We support great neighborhood public schools and high-quality public charter schools, and we will help them disseminate best practices to other school leaders and educators.”
- On Providing All Children With A World-Class Public Education: “We will ensure there are great Pre-K-12 schools in every zip code. Democrats are committed to the federal government continuing to play a critical role in working towards an America where a world-class education is available to every child.”
- On Affordability in Higher Education: “Democrats believe that if you are an American who wants to get an education, you should always be able to get one: money should never stand in the way. Cost should not be a barrier to getting a degree or credential, and debt should not hold you back after you graduate. Bold new investments by the federal government, coupled with states reinvesting in higher education and colleges holding the line on costs, will ensure that Americans of all backgrounds will be prepared for the jobs and economy of the future.”
- On Trump University & Holding Low Performing For-Profit Institutions of Higher Education Accountable: “Donald Trump ran a fake university—the now bankrupt Trump “University”—that scammed many out of their hard-earned savings and led to no degree and no obvious benefit to their education or economic prosperity. Democrats will not tolerate this type of fraud. We will also continue to crack down on for-profit schools that take millions in federal financial aid—often as their principal source of revenue—and then exploit students and burden them with debt rather than educating them.”
You can find DFER’s official testimony as submitted to the DNCC online, here.
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