March 01, 2021

Duckworth Votes to Confirm Dr. Miguel Cardona as Education Secretary


[WASHINGTON, D.C.] – U.S. Senator Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) today voted to confirm Dr. Miguel Cardona as United States Secretary of Education. Dr. Cardona was confirmed with a 64-33 vote to lead the Department of Education under President Biden and will be the first English-learner to serve in this role.

“As a long-time public school educator, Dr. Miguel Cardona has the experience, understanding and empathy we need to lead the Department of Education right now. As COVID-19 continues to widen racial and educational inequities, I hope he will work to ensure every student, regardless of their zip code or the color of their skin, has the tools and resources they need to have an opportunity for success during this pandemic and beyond. I look forward to working with him to safely reopen our schools, tackle our nation’s student debt crisis and push for quality, affordable and accessible education for the people of Illinois and for all Americans.”

Duckworth is a supporter of increasing resources for higher education institutions and making college more affordable for students. Along with Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL), Duckworth joined Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) and Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) along with their other Democratic colleagues in reintroducing a bicameral resolution calling on President Biden to tackle the student loan debt crisis by using existing authority under the Higher Education Act to cancel up to $50,000 in student loan debt for Federal student loan borrowers. In December 2020, Duckworth and Senator Durbin wrote to the leadership of the U.S. Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions to request an increase in federal funding for faculty and staff in higher education as well as teachers, paraprofessionals and school staff in public K-12 schools who are supporting their communities during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Duckworth looks forward to reintroducing the Expanding On-Campus Child Care to Help Student Parents Succeed Act, which would increase access to on-campus child care for low-income student parents and ensure the U.S. Department of Education is meeting the needs of our student parent populations. Also, Duckworth plans to reintroduce her Community College to Career Fund Act this Congress, to make higher education more affordable for students pursuing degrees in high-skill industries by helping businesses fill vacant, good-paying positions with qualified candidates.