Every child regardless of where they live deserves the opportunity to receive a world-class education. The state needs to fully fund education from early childhood through high school to prepare students for college and/or a well paying career. I am proud to say that this year the state approved appropriations that gave each Illinois public elementary and high school more money and for the first time in a long while did not pro-rate General State Aid. Our state needs to continue in this vein and provide our local schools with a higher degree of state funding for education so our schools are not so reliant on property taxes. This year also marked a year when the federal government agreed to give more autonomy for education to the states and local school districts. I support more local control of education decisions and fewer unfunded mandates to our local schools. I favor empowering our teachers and measuring student performance in a way that takes into account where a student started and the improvements he/she made. In terms of higher education, we need to protect the funding for MAP (Monetary Assistance Program) grants so that we can make college more accessible for all individuals.