CONCORD, NH (August 7, 2012) – NEA-New Hampshire, the state’s largest union, announced their endorsement of Maggie Hassan for Governor today, asking their more than 17,000 members and their families to support Hassan during the campaign and on Election Day.
“Maggie shares our belief that good public schools are the foundation for strong communities and a vibrant economy and that for our students and schools to thrive, we all need to be held accountable – teachers, parents, students and elected officials. She knows that continuing to slash school funding risks losing an entire generation of students who won’t get a second chance,” said Scott McGilvray, NEA-NH President.
“I am thrilled to have earned the support of more than 17,000 of New Hampshire's teachers and their families. As a leader in the state Senate, I fought to make sure all of our children have the chance to go to great schools that prepare them to succeed. As Governor, I will continue to put education first and stand up to anyone who wants to cut education,” Hassan said. “The message this Tea Party legislature has sent our children is ‘smoke more, study less.’ My Innovate NH Jobs plan recognizes that our education system is the foundation of our economic success, and key to building the 21st century workforce our businesses need to grow, innovate and create new jobs.”
“Imagining what the state of public education and the plight of middle class families would have been if Governor Lynch were not in the corner office these past two years is terrifying,” said McGilvray. “Ovide Lamontagne or Kevin Smith would be a disaster for public education in New Hampshire.”
“As chair of the state Board of Education, Lamontagne blocked local schools from receiving federal funds, opposed expanding public kindergarten and supported local districts teaching creationism. Lamontagne also blocked local schools from receiving federal education dollars, and recently told a radio host that as Governor, “I’d do it again.” Lamontagne would have allies in Bill O’Brien’s legislature, which this year considered legislation to block local schools from receiving more than $60 million in federal funds,” said McGilvery.
Lamontagne and Smith have both supported a constitutional amendment that would allow the legislature to cut aid to local school districts and pushed a law that is diverting millions of dollars in taxpayer money from public schools to private and religious schools.
“Losing the Governor’s office in the 2012 elections would give politicians and outside special interest groups who have never spent much time in a classroom, unchecked power to slash funding, weaken curriculum, and gut public education. For the sake of our students and their parents, we need to be sure that the Governor’s office remains in the hands of a champion of public education, and to that end, NEA-NH believes that Maggie Hassan can prevail in November, safeguarding the dream of a quality public education for every child in New Hampshire,” concluded McGilvray.
About NEA-New Hampshire
Founded in 1854, the New Hampshire State Teachers Association became one of the “founding ten” state education associations that formed the National Education Association in 1857. Known today as NEA-NH, and comprised of more than 17,000 members, our mission to advocate for the children of New Hampshire and public school employees and to promote lifelong learning remains true after more than 150 years. Our members are public school educators in all stages of their careers, including classroom teachers and other certified professionals, instructors at public higher education institutions, students preparing for a teaching career, education support personnel and those retired from the profession.
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Maggie Hassan has also earned the support of the Carpenters Union Local 118, Iron Workers Local 7, United Food and Commercial Workers Locals 1445 and 791, International Union of Painters and Allied Trades Council #35, Communications Workers of America Local 1400, International Association of Heat and Frost Insulators and Allied Workers Local #6, and the Teamsters Local 633. She also has the support of EMILY's List and Women's Campaign Fund.