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Kevin Kiley is a Republican California Legislator fighting back against the Supermajority and Special Interests at the State Capitol and Washington D.C. Sign up for updates to be part of our growing movement, and join other Californians of patriotism, decency, and common sense who want nothing more than to save our state and our country.

The Chair of Gavin Newsom’s Board of Education is in charge of education for the Biden Transition. From the candidates being pushed for Secretary of Education, there’s no doubt of the goal: to nationalize Newsom’s war on charters and school choice.

My GOP Assembly colleagues and I have seen these policies devastate public education in California. As a warning to the rest of the country, this week we opposed the nomination of American Federation of Teachers president Randi Weingarten or former National Education Association president Lily Eskelsen Garcia. As Politico reports:

Republican lawmakers in California told President-elect Joe Biden on Tuesday that he is “sure to trigger a confirmation battle in the Senate” if he nominates a teachers union leader as Education secretary.

You can read our letter here. These two leading candidates are the heads of massive union conglomerates – the national version of Newsom’s biggest political benefactors. Their selection would surrender national education policy to cash-flush special interests, just as has happened in California.

Just this year, California’s biggest political spender, the CTA, successfully lobbied Newsom to close schools no matter the tragic consequences for millions of kids. At the union’s behest, Newsom also signed a bill dropped at the 11th hour to effectively stop charters from enrolling new students. A long-time equity advocate said, “In my 30 years of close involvement in the state budget process, I’ve never witnessed such an egregious abuse.”

Wiengarten and Garcia, for their part, have called charters and school choice “misguided reforms” and “snake oil.”

The reason Gov. Newsom dislikes charters is because unionization is voluntary, not automatic – meaning less revenue for the special interests that spent millions getting him elected. It doesn’t matter that charters have proven to be the best hope for many underprivileged kids.

Last year he signed a package of bills specifically designed to cripple charters. The Urban Leagues of Greater Sacramento, San Diego, and Los Angeles described the bills as “a direct attack to the ability of African American parents to choose the best education possible for their children,” adding: “It is not fair to African American families to take away public charter schools and force them back into failing district-run schools.”

Three chapters of the NAACP passed a Resolution stating that “African American families are more likely to choose public charter schools” and that “African American students enrolled in public charter schools achieve academic outcomes exceeding their peers in district-run schools.”

California has staggering and ignominious achievement gaps. We rank 47th in fourth-grade math, 46th in fourth-grade reading, and 46th in fourth-grade science. This is the model Newsom’s team is now trying to force on the rest of the country.

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