U.S. Secretary of Education to Highlight Education as a National Security Issue During Trip to San Diego

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U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan will visit San Diego on Wednesday, March 23, as part of a two-day trip to California that will focus on the urgent need to fix No Child Left Behind. The trip is a continuation of Duncan’s ongoing conversations with local educators, community leaders and government officials throughout the nation on the best ways to improve education.

At 8:30 a.m., Duncan will join U.S. Rep. Duncan Hunter at Shoal Creek Elementary. They will tour the school and engage in a roundtable discussion that will address the bipartisan effort to reauthorize the Elementary and Secondary Education Act.

Following that event, Duncan will visit Marine Corps Air Station Miramar at 10:45 a.m. There, he will join U.S. Department of Defense Under Secretary for Personnel and Readiness Clifford Stanley, U.S. Rep. Duncan Hunter and U.S. Rep. Susan Davis as well as San Diego Unified School District Superintendent William Kowba and several military leaders to showcase education as a national security issue.

Kowba, who is a retired Navy rear admiral, will join Marine Corps Major General Anthony L. Jackson, Commanding General of Marine Corps Installations West; Marine Corps Major General Melvin G. Spiese, Deputy Commanding General of I Marine Expeditionary Force; Major General James W. Comstock, U.S. Army (Ret.), Mission: Readiness and Former Reserve Component Advisor, U.S. Central Command; and Major General Paul D. Monroe, U.S. Army (Ret.), Former Adjutant General of California, in speaking about the importance of improving student performance in the classroom. Comstock and Monroe, together with Amy Dawson Taggart, National Director of Mission: Readiness, will focus on the need for a greater investment in high-quality early learning opportunities.

Mission: Readiness is a non-profit composed of more than 200 retired generals and admirals who support bipartisan efforts to fix No Child Left Behind and to enact new federal legislation that enables more children to succeed.

The officials will tour an early childhood facility at Miramar and then hold a press conference that will focus on data showing that an estimated 75 percent of young adults are not able to join the military and that poor school performance is one of the leading reasons why many young adults cannot enlist.

Duncan’s trip to California, during which he will visit schools and engage in conversations with community leaders in both Los Angeles and San Diego, will echo President Obama’s call to Congress to move quickly and fix what is broken in No Child Left Behind.

NOTE TO EDITORS: Media interested in attending the Miramar event must RSVP with the Miramar Public Affairs Office at 858-864-3406 by 4:30 p.m. TODAY, Tuesday, March 22. Media should use the East Gate and be on site at the parking lot next to the East Gate by 10 a.m.