JUST IN: The Senate confirmed Miguel Cardona as Education Secretary. The former fourth-grade public school teacher will assume the department’s top job as the debate over reopening schools intensifies.https://t.co/jwK256hHUs
— NPR (@NPR)
Cardona’s longstanding background as an educator seems to resonate with Twitter fans happy to see him take over the role of secretary of education.
That’s a radical idea 🙃 someone that’s an educator will lead the education department?
— B3n (@whatnotb3n)
How hard was that to actually identify an experienced public school teacher for this role & responsibility who was qualified and willing to step up!
Lots to recover from after fiasco Betsy DeVos
— rockit girl (@rockitgirl48)
Before his nomination, Cardona served as Connecticut’s education commissioner. He’s been a staunch advocate for reopening schools during the COVID-19 pandemic, calling it necessary “to keep equity gaps from growing even wider,” Turner wrote.
Some of the topics of debate Cardona is walking into with his new role include how to safely reopen schools and the topic of vaccination for all educators.
In addition, Cardona is also faced with tackling last month’s issued guidance requiring states to resume annual testing of students, according to Turner.
“Testing, like teacher vaccination, has become a painful political wedge for Democrats,” Turner said.
Cardona seems to echo the Biden administration’s position saying in an earlier confirmation hearing “if we don’t assess where our students are and their level of performance, it’s going to be difficult for us to provide targeted support and resource allocation in the manner that can best support the closing of the gaps that have been exacerbated due to this pandemic.”
Twitter, of course, had even more to say about Cardona’s new role.
As a teacher, parent of a high school student, and advocate for public education, I fully support Dr. Cardona’s confirmation. In fact, considering the most recent leadership in DoEd., I’m relieved.
— Patrick Toth (@PFTinTN)
While Secretary Cardona’s resume documents his varied posts, every teacher knows standardized testing constricts meaningful learning time in a normal year. The position he has staked out to administer tests during a pandemic shows no empathy for students. It’s a waste!
— Susan Kaiser (@everydayissatnv)
Wow an educator as the secretary of education! How revolutionary!!
— Pfred Pflueger (@Pfredp)
So important after Devil Devos. Time for teaching and learning, inclusion and reinvigorating public education!
— April Showers (@AprilSh99452871)
Wait, don’t you have to donate millions of dollars to the president’s campaign and NOT be a teacher? I thought this was America.
— Eric Fong (@EricSFong)
Yay! Love it when a teacher is at the head of the department of education!
— Elizabeth Lund (@elizabethslund)
The superintendent of Meriden Public Schools, Mark Benigni, who promoted Cardona to work with him, says Cardona is the perfect guy to calm tensions, according to Turner.
“Miguel’s approach is to listen … to work together to see the other side of the situation. I don’t think he’s ever, ‘It’s my way or the highway,'” Benigni said.
This content was originally published here.