U.S. Senate Confirms Miguel Cardona as Education Secretary

The United States Senate has voted 64-33 on March 1 to confirm Miguel Cardona as the secretary of the Department of Education.

Cardona will lead the department, which has an annual budget of over $60 billion, as schools nationwide debate about returning to in-person instruction amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

During Cardona’s confirmation hearing last Feb. 3, he vowed to provide clear and science-based reopening guidance and to address “inequities head on.”

“I’ll do everything in my power to make sure that our rollout strategy for reopening schools includes communication on how to safely reopen schools,” Cardona said last month.

Cardona, who was the first Latino to serve as the education commissioner in Connecticut, also told lawmakers last month that the plan for safe reopening of schools should include “increased surveillance testing for our educators and a prioritization of our educators for vaccination.”

“Dr. Cardona has committed to following the science and has agreed to prioritize bringing students back to the classroom quickly and safely,” Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Ranking Member Richard Burr stated following Cardona’s confirmation, adding that he was “glad to be able to support” Cardona.

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