Education

Growing up in Palo Alto and attending public schools, Marc Berman saw firsthand the critical role that a high quality public education can play in creating a level playing field where every student – regardless of socioeconomic background – has  the opportunity to get the education they need to succeed. Marc believes that every student in Silicon Valley and across California deserves the same high quality public education that he received.

This is not the reality for every California student today. Marc is committed to making sure that all students go to schools that are equipped to teach them the skills they’ll need to thrive in the 21st century economy. He has worked hard to make that a reality here in Silicon Valley, and now, he’s ready to work hard in Sacramento to make that a reality for every California student.

 Marc has a track record of bridging the achievement gap in Silicon Valley:

  • In 2010, Marc served on the campaign committee for the Measure A parcel tax measure, which raises $12 million a year to improve the educational experience of all students in the Palo Alto Unified School District.

  • Marc joined the Silicon Valley Education Foundation (SVEF), an education non-profit whose objective is for Silicon Valley to be #1 in the percentage of high school graduates academically prepared to complete post-secondary education. At SVEF, Marc helped lead a Gates Foundation funded pilot program that brought classroom teachers together with education technology entrepreneurs to identify effective ed-tech products, improve them, and integrate them into Silicon Valley schools.

  • Marc organized a Women in STEM forum with female executives from Yahoo, Google, Flex, and others to encourage women and girls to pursue STEM related fields.

  • As the Development Director at SVEF, Marc raised almost twice as much money as the Foundation had brought in previously, allowing the organization to scale its programs to help more students and teachers throughout Silicon Valley.

Marc is committed to making our public education programs, from pre-K through higher education, the best in the nation again, including:

  • Leading the fight for universal Pre-K. Learning begins long before kindergarten, and too many low-income and immigrant children start their educational career already behind.

  • Ensuring that every California student receives the skills they need to succeed in the 21st century economy. As of 2014, only 44% of high school students had access to computer science instruction, and only 15% had access to an AP computer science course. This is unacceptable for California, and this digital divide is often felt the most in low-income communities and school districts.

  • Rededicating our state to the visionary goals of the 1960s Master Plan for Higher Education. It’s time to again promise California’s students who work hard and get good grades an accessible, affordable, and high quality higher education.

  • Making community college free. Community colleges are the gateway to higher education and living wage jobs for over two million students, and they are vital to ensuring California’s workforce meets the needs of our dynamic and innovative economy. Community college should be free for students who complete an Associate degree, career technical education program, job re-training program, or transfer to a four-year college.

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