As a student at Harvard, KamalaHarris worked for the Department of Education and helped establish the National Center for Head Start, the largest national program for young children.
She was elected to the Senate in 2020, defeating Republican Scott Brown.
Harris’ tenure in the Senate has been marked by high-profile battles over school vouchers and her vote against the bipartisan bill that would have expanded the Earned Income Tax Credit to families making less than $50,000 a year.
Harris has also been outspoken on a range of issues, including education and racial justice.
In 2017, Harris signed an executive order barring federal contractors from discriminating against LGBTQ employees on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity.
She also helped to establish the Fairness in Education Coalition, an umbrella group for several progressive groups.
Haris nomination as the next Secretary of Education has been dogged by the fallout from her decision to back a controversial transgender student’s lawsuit against the federal government over Title IX of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.
The U.S. Department of Justice argued in court that the federal law prohibiting sex discrimination in federally funded education was unconstitutional because it “implies that transgender students can be treated differently from others in the classroom based on their sex.”
The Department of Homeland Security and the Department at Large, which manages the federal student aid program, were also on the DOJ’s side.
In February, the Trump administration withdrew a lawsuit against DeVos, which had challenged the use of the controversial transgender policy in federal education programs.