On The Issues

Education

We cannot underestimate the influence of a good education. As students gain confidence and upward mobility, communities often experience decreased crime rates, and employers get access to a skilled workforce. This brings good jobs and higher wages to the area. In some ways, Missouri excels in the learning opportunities we provide, but as a mother of 5, I can tell you our education system faces challenges too.
 

  • Many aspects of a child’s life influences educational success – from family dynamics to school lunches. Therefore, my administration will work to improve K-12 outcomes and make post-secondary education more affordable and applicable to the modern workforce.

  • Missouri students consistently produce good test scores, graduate on time, and meet college readiness benchmarks. But many schools struggle to make ends meet, jeopardizing the long-term success of Missouri’s K-12 education system. As governor, I will be committed to balancing the needs of families, teachers, administrators, and taxpayers as we prepare students for college, the workforce, and citizenship.

  • You and your family can raise your kids better than the government. As a conservative, I will protect the rights of parents to choose the educational path that’s best for their child, whether it’s homeschooling, public schooling, or a private education. Regardless of a family’s decision, I will work to ensure all students have equal opportunity within the education system.

 
Public education policy is too often evaluated by expenditures, rather than student success. That’s a mistake. We need to focus on creating a better system, not a more expensive one – a goal that can and should be accomplished without taking necessary resources out of classrooms. As governor, I would:
 

  • Work to centralize and standardize purchasing, giving local schools more options to cut costs by taking advantage of the state’s massive buying power;

  • Encourage schools to share resources and expand long-distance learning opportunities;

  • Assist local school districts in pursuing private funds to mitigate the cost of capital projects;

  • Reform the Department of Education, adopting a model that promotes much closer collaboration with locally elected school boards; 

  • Improve transparency in school district budgeting;

  • Reject Common Core and federal overreach; and

  • Promote civic education. Our republic only works if citizens are active and informed.

 

The next generation of Missourians must understand the foundations of our nation, the tremendous sacrifices made to protect our constitutional rights, freedoms, liberties, and responsibilities we have as citizens. In collaboration with school districts, I will work to expand civics and U.S. history programs and encourage schools to include the citizenship test as part of their graduation criteria.
 
I recognize a four-year degree isn’t right for every high school graduate, and the truth is, it isn’t always right for our labor market. Still, college graduates, on average, earn 56% more than high school graduates. As such, my administration will work to drive down the cost of a university or technical school degree, while focusing on producing job-holders, not simply degree-holders.
 

  • Working with financial aid offices, my administration will help create a single, online repository for all scholarships. Additionally, I will take on the task of bringing state-allocated scholarships under a single umbrella, simplifying the process and building in cost-saving efficiencies; and 

  • Challenge schools to prioritize affordability. Tuition costs have steadily increased in recent years. Working with the state legislature, my administration will challenge universities and technical schools to identify efficiencies and reinvest savings toward affordability.

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3854 South Avenue, Springfield MO 65807

Paid for by Saundra McDowell for Missouri
Jeff Shore, Treasurer