March 17, 2017

Duckworth Touts Public Education, College Affordability at Parent Mentor Conference in Chicago


CHICAGO, IL - U.S. Senator Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) delivered the keynote address at the Logan Square Neighborhood Association's annual Parent Mentor Convention, which celebrates the work of parent volunteers in public schools. During her speech, Duckworth highlighted the need for greater investments in public schools and more affordable options for higher education. A photo of Duckworth at the convention can be found here. Audio of her remarks in both English and Spanish is available upon request.

"I'm a strong proponent of public education because I'm a product of public education," said Senator Duckworth. "It's crucial that every child gets the attention and resources they need to succeed in school, no matter where they're from, and I commend those participating in the Parent Mentor Program for their work to engage students in new and powerful ways."

Duckworth has been a champion for public education and college affordability issues since she was first elected to Congress. As a Congresswoman, she introduced the In The Red Act, which would strengthen Pell Grants, allow students to refinance their debt at more affordable interest rates and make community college tuition-free for deserving students. As a Senator, Duckworth introduced the Community College to Career Fund Act this week to close the "skills gap," by creating a grant program to fund workforce training partnership programs between colleges and employers to help prepare Illinois students for jobs in high-demand industries, such as healthcare, advanced manufacturing, clean energy and information technology.

The Parent Mentor Program allows parents to assist both teachers and students in schools across Chicago to ensure all children get the support and attention they need to succeed in the classroom. The program provides parents with a weeklong leadership training before they are assigned to a classroom to work one-on-one and in small groups with children. Parent volunteers then receive a small stipend after volunteering for at least 100 hours.