Last updated: April 17. 2014 9:11AM - 2391 Views
By Bill O’Boyle boboyle@civitasmedia.com

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Allyson Schwartz

Age: 65

Party: Democratic

Seeking: Nomination for governor

Current job: U.S. rep. from the 13th District

Residence: Jenkintown, Montgomery County

Education: Simmons College, BA Sociology; Bryn Mawr College, MA Social Work

Family: husband, David; 2 sons; 1 grandchild

Pashinski, Flynn back Wolf

Tom Wolf received the backing of state representatives Eddie Day Pashinski, D-Wilkes-Barre, and Marty Flynn, D-Dunmore, in his bid for governor. The regional leaders cited his plan to invest in education, his call to make gas companies pay their fair share and his support for cities such as Scranton and Wilkes-Barre.

“Tom Wolf has a common sense plan to restore much needed resources to our education system and make gas companies pay their fair share,” Pashinski said.

“Scranton public schools are in disrepair, and the state is holding money that we desperately need to repair our schools’ infrastructure,” Flynn said.

Wolf said he was humbled to earn the support of the lawmakers. “We must invest in our future by focusing on education and standing up for middle-class families,” he said.

WILKES-BARRE — As U.S. Rep. Allyson Schwartz read “Stripes of All Types” to a group of pre-schoolers at Head Start Monday, she said students who receive early education succeed early and are successful throughout life.

Schwartz, 65, a Democratic candidate for governor, met with children and families who have benefited from the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) and Head Start to discuss the programs and Schwartz’s universal pre-k and full-day kindergarten plans.

“What you have in me is someone who knows the value of these programs and as governor, I will see that they continue,” she said.

Schwartz stopped at several classrooms, and one group had just returned from a visit to the Wilkes-Barre city police station, where they were offered a presentation from Crime Prevention Officer Phil Myers. Schwartz asked them what they had learned.

“Don’t shoot anybody,” one boy shouted. “Guns are bad.”

Schwartz stopped by Head Start on Beekman Street to tour the facility, talk to employees and parents and to offer her support of early education programs.

Lynn Evans Biga, executive director at Head Start, said the agency serves about 1,100 children and has a constant waiting list of 300 to 400.

Schwartz said she is concerned about those left behind. She said pre-school programs are vital not just for academics, but also that they also help children with social skills and overall health care.

“Research shows that if children get a good start, they do better in life,” Schwartz said.

Schwartz said if she were elected governor, she would reinstate the reimbursements for full-day kindergarten. She said teachers have told her that full-time kindergarten students do far better in school.

“And that’s why pre-school programs, like Head Start, are enormously important,” Schwartz said.

To secure funding for education, Schwartz said she would tax the Marcellus Shale industry. She said her experience in Congress would help her secure federal allocations for Pennsylvania.

Schwartz said voters should look to her because of her vast experience. She has a social services background and has served in the state senate and in Congress.

“I’m in this race because we have a governor who has not helping Pennsylvania’s families,” Schwartz said. “I’ll be a governor who will go to bat for the people,” she said.

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