Funding public schools and supporting teachers

Good public schools and good public school teachers are our best lines of defense against entrenched, intergenerational economic inequality. As the son of a yellow cab driver and a hairdresser, I owe a great debt of gratitude to my public school teachers because their consistent support gave me the educational foundation I needed to attend a good college and a good law school. Our public education system is the backbone of the American Dream.

Unfortunately, a few billionaires are lobbying to re-direct public education dollars to private programs in every way possible. We will not allow voucher systems and school tax credits to drain our precious public education resources. Separately, we will freeze charter school expansion until we can increase the resources of our severely underfunded public schools. We will guarantee universal pre-kindergarten for every child in America. We will defend our public schools and our teachers’ unions for the sake of special needs children, children of color, LGBTQ children, and economically disadvantaged children.

Student debt cancellation

I know the feeling of being in debt. I accumulated a crushing amount of student loan debt during college and law school, and I struggled with catastrophic medical bills after law school. I know that for families living paycheck to paycheck, America can feel like an open-air debtors’ prison.

We must cancel the shocking student debt that plagues an entire generation of young Americans. How can any economy thrive when an entire generation of young people are unable to start families and buy homes? Many young Americans are in mountains of debt because of predatory lending practices and collusion between lenders and colleges in the first place. We need to provide relief to millions of victims now and uplift an entire generation of young Americans.

Free public college and trade school

Every American should have the opportunity to attend a local college or local trade school without student loans. Our best chance to build up a globally competitive workforce is to make public colleges and trade schools free regardless of income. This will benefit communities whose children are unable to afford college or trade school, and it will benefit workers transitioning from one profession to another in the middle of their careers. At a time when the rest of the world is catching up to us economically, technologically, and militarily, we must be committed to building a highly educated and value-added workforce.