Cardona fears effort to reimagine public education is slipping away

Education Secretary Miguel Cardona fretted in the back of a tour bus rolling through Detroit’s rain-soaked suburbs about the future of President Joe Biden’s signature proposal to reshape American higher education.

Cardona was concerned a $45.5 billion free community college program, one of the Biden initiatives he’s supposed to shepherd, won’t make it into the final version of the multitrillion-dollar social spending package Congress is hashing out.

“I’m worried that’s one of the things that is being looked at to be cut from the Build Back Better agenda,” Cardona said in an interview last week from the suite of a lavender-colored motorcoach. The secretary was on a weeklong trip to celebrate efforts to safely reopen America’s public schools and sell the president’s pitch in five Midwestern states.

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