DFER's mission is to encourage a more productive dialogue within the Democratic Party on the need to fundamentally reform American public education. Each month, we identify one candidate who is standing up for meaningful reform and innovation, and we help demonstrate the broad base of support for his or her efforts. Please give as generously as you can.
June 2010: Congressman Tom Perriello (VA-5)
Freshman Congressman Tom Perriello has spent his life serving the underserved and, in Congress, his bona fide progressive values have turned him into an avid education reformer. He is part of a new generation of federal elected officials who represent a dramatic departure from old-school obsession with ideology.Perriello was one of the strongest supporters of Rep. Jared Polis’ All-STAR Act, which helps to replicate high-performing charter schools that serve at-risk students. The bill establishes new thresholds for data-driven accountability and transparency, helping to ensure that new charter schools maintain the high level of performance that today’s most trusted ones achieve.In 2008, Perriello pulled off one of the country’s biggest electoral upsets, beating a six-term Republican incumbent. His reelection campaign is likely to be challenging as well, so every dollar of support is especially critical. Perriello is the kind of keen, progressive champion we need in Washington, D.C.