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NEA applauds O’Rourke’s public education proposal

Candidates continue to make students and public schools central to the 2020 election

WASHINGTON - July 24, 2019 -

National Education Association President Lily Eskelsen García provided the following statement in response to the release of former Rep. Beto O’Rourke’s education plan:

“Across the nation, educators and parents, students and community leaders have come together to demand the resources our public schools need to ensure every student can attend a great public school. The #RedForEd movement has helped rally communities in support of ensuring our public schools are given the resources they need and start correcting the years of unsustainable sacrifices educators have made.
“We applaud Rep. Beto O’Rourke’s innovative public education plan released today, which calls for a Permanent Fund for Equity and Excellence, boosting efforts to recruit and retain diverse educators, and giving educators a voice in creating strong public schools. His plan, centered around equal opportunity for all students and making the broad investments in the public schools our students deserve, recognizes the importance of investing in the teacher pipeline at time when our country is experiencing a national teacher shortage. 

“O’Rourke’s plan further illustrates that 2020 candidates recognize how vital student success is to our nation’s future, and is a testament to the power of the #RedForEd movement and the important role public education will play in shaping the presidential election.”

NEA is in the early stages of evaluating 2020 presidential candidates and recently hosted the #StrongPublicSchools Presidential Forum in Houston at the association’s annual Representative Assembly. Praise for any candidate’s proposal should not be seen as an endorsement of that candidate. As America’s largest union and largest organization of educators, NEA will continue engaging in conversations with all candidates as we vet them to determine who has the best ideas for ensuring all students, regardless of where they live, receive support, tools, and time to learn.

Educators are trusted and powerful voices in every community. NEA represents 1 in 100 Americans, and 1 in 39 voters comes from an NEA household. NEA members are located in every U.S. congressional district, including key battleground states, which makes them key electoral influencers.

Follow NEA on Twitter at @NEAmedia


The National Education Association is the nation’s largest professional employee organization, representing nearly 3 million elementary and secondary teachers, higher education faculty, education support professionals, school administrators, retired educators and students preparing to become teachers. Learn more at

Contact: Eric Jotkoff
(202) 822-7355