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Maryland Democratic candidates talk crime, integrity, gas prices in gubernatorial debate – fail to address COVID concerns in public schools

6/9/2022 | Tinashe Chingarande

The AFRO

The third question of the debate, asked by AFRO News Editor Alexis Taylor, was shied away from by most of the men looking to be the next governor of Maryland. Taylor spoke of school conditions prior to the arrival of COVID-19 and how the coronavirus pandemic exacerbated every issue already faced by students, teachers and administrators.

“How will you navigate our schools through the pandemic as it continues and the numbers rise?” Taylor asked.

“I’ll be the education governor not just because I was a teacher and principal, or just because I was President Obama’s secretary of education,” said candidate John King. “…but because I wouldn’t be standing here but for the grace of public education.”

The former Obama official said that Maryland’s Blueprint for the Future —a 2021 legislation that increases state funding for education by $3.8 billion each year over the next 10 years— was “great,” but that “it should be the floor, not the ceiling.”

He further argued that there should be a focus on granting parents access to affordable childcare and further swelling funding for public schools by mandating that multimillionaires and large corporations “pay their fair share.”

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