Training Prospects

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Secretary of Education’s position under the Biden administration Elementray school teacher, Reagan Duncan, said teaching amid the pandemic is "the hardest thing" Duncan hopes for more federal funding for PPE Duncan said she’s excited for the first lady, Jill Biden, to be, as Biden put it: “One of your own in the White House” At the same time, some California teachers are watching closely for whom Biden will nominate as U.S. Secretary of Education. Ms. Reagan Duncan teaches first grade at Maryland Elementary School in Vista, virtually. “It’s hands down the hardest thing I’ve ever done,” Duncan said. Duncan is a part of the Vista Teachers Association and said she and her colleagues are struggling to keep students engaged while being confined to a virtual screen. On top of Duncan’s pandemic challenges, her biggest concern comes from schools not having enough federal grants to buy COVID-19 equipment and gear in order to reopen schools as safely as possible. Duncan said she’s also worried about the current administration’s proposals this year to cut public school funding and teacher grants while prioritizing private schooling, for what the current administration calls ‘school-choice.’ “What ‘school-choice’ really means for schools like mine, where there is a low-income population — we have a very high population of homeless students — is that ‘school-choice' allows or encourages people who have wealth to leave schools like mine and leave other schools, further segregating the schools,” Duncan said. The Trump administration’s Education Secretary Betsy DeVos said families should be free to choose their best options.