A familiar face will be joining Dr. Jill Biden on her first trip to Connecticut since becoming the first lady.
Lifelong Meriden resident Miguel Cardona, Connecticut’s former Education Commissioner and President Joe Biden’s newly confirmed Education Secretary, announced he will be joining the First Lady on her planned trip that was announced last week.
During the visit, Cardona and Biden are expected to visit Benjamin Franklin Elementary school in Meriden, and the Fort LeBoeuf Middle School in Waterford.
Cardona was confirmed by the Senate this week by a 64-33 vote. He will now be tasked with accomplishing the president’s stated goal of returning all students to in-person learning amid the COVID-19 crisis.
Cardona becomes the nation’s 12th Education Secretary.
“It’s the honor of my life to be sworn in as nation’s 12th education secretary. Thank you members of senate, @POTUS, and @VP for their trust,” Cardona posted on Twitter. “Now it’s time to get to work for students. Follow along on my official account, @SecCardona. Added bonus, bringing family to work on Day 1!”
Cardona served as co-chairperson of the Connecticut Legislative Achievement Gap Task Force as well as co-chairperson of the Connecticut Birth to Grade Three Leaders Council. He also taught for four years as an adjunct professor at the University of Connecticut in the Department of Educational Leadership, according to the state's website.
He was chosen over Lily Eskelsen Garcia, who was president of the National Education Association for six years, and Leslie T. Fenwick, the dean emeritus of the Howard University School of Education and an education policy professor
“Dr. Miguel Cardona has worked in a classroom, has led schools and districts, and has worked for a governor,” a coalition of governors wrote before Cardona’s confirmation.
“We believe he is uniquely qualified to partner with governors to keep students and educators safe while pursuing the urgent need to swiftly and safely resume in-person instruction.”
According to the governors, during the COVID-19 pandemic, Cardona “focused his energy on recognizing and addressing the pandemic’s emotional toll on educators, students, and their families.”
“He prioritized reopening schools in Connecticut safely, while ensuring that those students and teachers who did not return to in-person instruction nevertheless had the tools they needed to continue teaching and learning,” they said. “He well understands the systemic obstacles that create inequities for students.
“He has redoubled his career-long efforts to tear down walls that separate those students from a high-quality education.”
Click here to sign up for Daily Voice's free daily emails and news alerts.