Education Minnesota applauds the ambition of Gov. Walz’s ‘Due North’ education plan
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ST. PAUL, Minnesota. Jan. 25, 2021 – The sweeping education plan presented Monday by Gov. Tim Walz and Lt. Gov. Peggy Flanagan represents a large step forward on three of the biggest challenges facing public education, including recovering from the pandemic, chronic underfunding and persistent racial gaps, Education Minnesota President Denise Specht said.
“For me, this plan shows a willingness to take on the trauma caused by the pandemic – and the underlying racism revealed by it – and to build back to better schools for everyone,” said Specht, who attended the presentation. “The fact that we’re talking about all these things at once speaks to the urgency and complexity of the problems – and the political courage of the governor, the lieutenant governor and Education Commissioner Mary Cathryn Ricker.”
The governor’s plan, called “Due North,” can be found here. Among the highlights are:
- Ensure academic standards address the modern needs of the workforce, are inclusive of ethnic studies, and are reflective of students of color and Indigenous students.
- Build the necessary supports for students around mental health and social and emotional learning.
- Launch and expand programs to specifically recruit, retain and support teachers of color and Indigenous teachers.
- Ensure students receive an accurate history of Minnesota’s Indigenous people.
- Freeze the cross-subsidy for special education and buy down the English Learner services cross-subsidy to ensure students receive necessary services.
Financial aspects of the plan are expected to be explained in greater detail Tuesday when Gov. Walz is scheduled to present his two-year budget.
About Education Minnesota
Education Minnesota is the voice for professional educators and students. Education Minnesota’s members include teachers and education support professionals in Minnesota’s public school districts, faculty members at Minnesota’s community and technical colleges and University of Minnesota campuses in Duluth and Crookston, retired educators and student teachers. Education Minnesota is affiliated with the American Federation of Teachers, National Education Association and AFL-CIO.