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US Education Secretary visiting Maine

Cardona will meet with bus drivers from RSU 21 to talk about the ongoing school bus driver...
Cardona will meet with bus drivers from RSU 21 to talk about the ongoing school bus driver shortage.(Connecticut State Colleges & Universities)
Published: Apr. 11, 2022 at 7:34 AM EDT
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KENNEBUNK, Maine (WMTW) - U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona will be in Maine Monday for a pair of events.

At noon, he will be in Kennebunk to meet with bus drivers from RSU 21 to talk about the ongoing school bus driver shortage across the country and how Maine has worked to address that shortage in part by using resources made available through the American Rescue Plan.

“We’re honored that our nation’s top education leader has chosen to visit RSU 21 on his visit to Maine to learn more about our work,” said RSU 21 Superintendent Dr. Terri Cooper. “Like all of our dedicated staff, we are proud of our bus drivers, mechanics and bus aides who have helped keep students safe in school and on the bus throughout the pandemic.”

The school district got federal funding to help buy new school buses without having to use local taxpayer money.

The district also got federal funding to provide $500 bonuses to all full-time staff.

Other federal money helped RSU 21 pay for the district’s new summer boost program for students, new website, human resources management system, and the hiring of new allied arts teachers and an educational recovery officer.

After his meeting with bus drivers, Cardona will go to York County Community College in Wells to hold a roundtable discussion with students, including ones who are simultaneously enrolled in community college classes.

They’ll discuss their experience and how to ensure higher education institutions create good career pathways.

The president’s proposed budget provides a new $200 million investment in Career-Connected High Schools, an initiative that would support competitive grants to partnerships of local educational agencies, institutions of higher education – including community colleges – and employers, to support early enrollment in postsecondary and career-connected coursework; work-based learning opportunities; and academic and career-connected instruction across the last two years of high school and the first two years of postsecondary education.

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