Presidential hopeful Sen. Elizabeth Warren on Monday released an education plan that aims to quadruple public education funding with a focus on allocating more resources to lower-income students and increasing teacher pay.
Warren’s plan, which her campaign says would be paid for by her proposed 2% wealth tax on people whose net worth is more than $50 million, focuses on desegregation, affordability and expansion into programs for students with special needs.
A $450 billion infusion into the system over the next decade will encourage schools to use it in part to pay teachers a higher salary and close the educator pay gap, according to her campaign. The funding can also go toward paying for supplies and resources so teachers don’t have to pay extra out-of-pocket costs.
In its entirety, her education proposal calls for $800 billion more in funding, which would account for the remaining balance of the revenue she says her wealth tax will raise, The Wall Street Journal reported. She has also envisioned using the wealth tax’s proceeds to pay for tuition-free public college education, abolishing student debt and a universal child-care program.
Warren’s campaign estimates her wealth tax, which rises to 3% on net worth of $1 billion and above, will raise $2.75 trillion over 10 years.
Warren said her administration would cover up to 40% of any additional costs for educating students with disabilities, the amount that Congress originally intended for coverage when it first proposed this policy in 1975.
Other proposals include:
- “Excellence grants” of $100 billion that will go toward expanding resources and activities for students, with the goal of “25,000 public schools transition[ing] to the community school framework by 2030.”
- A $50 billion investment into school infrastructure, but there’s no indication of whether the money will be spread out over a period of time or given in one lump sum.
- Housing grants of $10 billion to build parks and schools if cities and states eliminate restrictive zoning laws.
- A $25 billion fund for health-care access and expanding service at existing clinics.
Warren also took a shot at Education Secretary Betsy DeVos for not having a background in public education. The candidate said her Education secretary would in fact have such a background.
The plan from the Massachusetts senator also takes aim at charter schools. She would end federal funding for the expansion of charter schools and ban for-profit charters.
Warren’s plan has received support from teachers union the National Education Association.