Juana will fight to ensure every child has access to a great education because she wouldn’t be here without Haverhill’s public schools. Great public education has been central to so many families’ American Dream stories. Today, we need to recommit to investing in our schools, supporting great teachers, and putting college within reach. As State Representative, Juana has fought to address disparities in education, from filing legislation to reduce disproportionate suspensions for students of color to building a mentoring program for girls in Lawrence public schools. Juana knows that our path forward in education must be centered on the needs of our students, teachers, families, and communities.

“I’ve seen firsthand Juana’s dedication to public education. She’s been a tireless advocate on Beacon Hill, and she’s here at Lawrence High School every month working with our students. Juana co-founded the Estrellas program, which provides mentorship to young women of color and helps them with everything from public speaking to financial literacy. It’s exactly that kind of commitment that we need in Congress.”

Patrick O’Connor, Lawrence High School Math Teacher

“During my time as a member of the School Committee, I have worked hard to expand after-school programs for our students. Juana is committed to bringing this fight to Washington to make sure when the last bell rings, there are safe and educational programs for students available. I know she will be a champion for working class families because she comes from one, and has dedicated her career to serving the city of Haverhill, and the other communities across the Merrimack Valley.”

Scott Wood, Jr, Haverhill School Committee member.

High Quality Early Childhood Education: A Strong Start for Every Child in America

As Our Congresswoman, Juana will:

  • Advocate for expanded early education programs so every child has a strong start and every family has access to high-quality, safe, reliable and affordable early-education programs and childcare.
  • Fight for a living wage for early educators who play a critical role in educating our youngest learners; Juana will work alongside advocates to professionalize a field that is too often undervalued.
  • Lead efforts to support dual language early education programs which are proven to be beneficial for children whose first language is not English.
  • Advocate for federal resources to support local wrap around services, early intervention, home-visiting, and maternal health supports that provide young families and children with essential support.

K12 Education: Strengthening Opportunity, Putting Our Students and Teachers First

As Our Congresswoman, Juana will:

  • Be a champion for programs that recruit, support, and retain the best teachers and school leaders. It’s time to treat teaching like the challenging, skilled, professional work that it is. Competitive salaries, responsive resources, and high quality professional development are all essential. We must make teaching a go-to profession for the next generation and recruit people from diverse backgrounds to take up teaching as a career.
  • Support out-of-school and afterschool programs that work. We know learning doesn’t stop when the final bell rings. Every child should have access to community organizations leading high quality programs that introduce students to STEM, entrepreneurship, civics, and the arts.
  • Increase investments in healthy school breakfasts and lunches. Our kids can’t learn if they’re hungry. We need to ensure that all students have access to nutritious food at school and through community programs during summer and school breaks.
  • Invest in trauma informed education practices that support our students, build on the recent increase in Title IV A funding, fight to eliminate the disproportionate suspensions that students of color experience, and stop the school-to-prison pipeline.
  • Invest in service programs like AmeriCorps that engage young people as mentors, tutors, and advocates in working on solutions to challenges in local communities.

Higher Education: Putting Life-Changing Degrees and Credentials Within Reach

As Our Congresswoman, Juana will:

  • Advocate for access to higher education for all students with bold, common-sense policies that put credentials and degrees within reach for all students, including students of color and students from low income communities. Increase transparency about federal financial aid, encourage robust investments in federal grants, expand federal work study programs so students can pay their way, and incentivize states to implement innovative programs like debt free college, early college, apprenticeships, in-school workforce training, and robust reverse transfer programs.  
  • Ensure that local undocumented students have access to in-state tuition rates at two- and four-year public colleges and universities in their state of residence.
  • Fight to support the more than 30% of college students who are food insecure by updating requirements for the food stamp program and expanding programs like summer Pell grants that address gaps in higher-education funding.
  • Work to end the public health epidemic of campus sexual assault that derails the education of far too survivors across the country and hold colleges accountable to address this crisis and support survivors.  
  • Fight to address the student debt crisis, which is delaying home ownership, putting financial strain on multiple generations, and limiting the ability of recent graduates to start businesses. Expand public service loan forgiveness programs to make student debt more manageable for existing borrowers and close loopholes that have jeopardized teachers’, firefighters’, and public servants’ access to the loan forgiveness programs they have earned. Expand incentives and forgiveness options for educators and veterans. Encourage higher education institutions to expand both merit-based and need-based grants that empower students to start their careers with limited debt.