May 08, 2020
WASHINGTON, D.C. – To conclude National Teacher Appreciation Week, U.S. Senator Angus King (I-Maine) participated in a teleconference today with the Maine Jump$tart Coalition, a program that aims to improve the financial literacy of Maine people, to recognize two financial educators. Ms. Raelene Allen of Madison High School, and Ms. Samantha Drost of Central Aroostook High School have both been honored as Finance Educators of the Year, to publicly appreciate their outstanding efforts to improve the financial capability of the students and families they serve.
“Financial education is vital for Maine people to build and sustain a strong financial future for them as they pursue their career and lifetime goals,” said Senator King. “During these uncertain times, when many Maine people are forced to balance complex financial needs, it’s heartening to know that teachers like Ms. Allen and Ms. Drost continue to provide their students with the resources and tools they need to properly prepare for financial success. Teachers around the state are going above and beyond to ensure that no child falls through the cracks in the age of remote learning – and we thank them for their efforts.”
As the coronavirus pandemic has caused cancellations of schools across the nation, Senator King has pushed to ensure Maine’s teachers and students have all the tools they need to make the most of distance learning. Last month, he joined a group of colleagues in a letter to House and Senate leadership requesting sufficient funding for all K-12 students to have adequate home internet connectivity if their schools close due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. In March, Senator King joined a group of his colleagues in calling on the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to temporarily allow schools to utilize E-Rate program funding to provide Wi-Fi hotspots or devices with Wi-Fi capability to students who lack internet access at home. Earlier in March, Senator King sent a letter to the CEOs of eight major internet service providers (ISPs), calling on the companies to take steps to accommodate the unprecedented reliance we will likely see on telepresence services, including telework, online education, telehealth, and remote support services; in response to Senator King’s letter, several major ISPs took action to better support these remote technologies.
Throughout the pandemic, Senator King has engaged with Maine people from all walks of life and helpful organizations to address questions surrounding the coronavirus pandemic and identify remaining work to be done. Since the Senate passed the CARES Act, he joined the Maine Association of Nonprofits (MANP) for a teleconference discussing the significant role that Maine’s nonprofits are playing in the coronavirus response in communities across Maine, and the challenges these organizations are facing due to the pandemic, participated in a video teleconference with YMCA Youth Advocates from Maine and across the nation to discuss the Senate’s efforts to support youth and nonprofits amid the coronavirus pandemic, participated in a tele-town hall hosted by the Maine League of Women Voters to discuss the importance of proactively preparing to adjust electoral processes, he has also taken part in a telephone press conference to highlight the unique coronavirus-related strains on the rural healthcare system, participated in a virtual listening session with members of the Penobscot Bay Regional Chamber of Commerce, joined a video conference call with civics and history teachers from schools across Maine, connected with members of the Maine State Chamber of Commerce, highlighted resources available for Maine seniors in a call hosted by AARP Maine, and spoke to 500 Maine employees of Sun Life.