Terry and Dorothy McAuliffe, Pamela Northam visit Albemarle County preschool

Pamela Northam, Dorothy McAuliffe, and Terry McAuliffe with JABA staff.
Pamela Northam, Dorothy McAuliffe, and Terry McAuliffe with JABA staff.(wvir)
Published: Oct. 11, 2021 at 7:17 PM EDT
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CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WVIR) - With the November election less than a month away, candidates are making their final pushes. Democratic gubernatorial candidate Terry McAuliffe stopped by central Virginia Monday.

Terry McAuliffe came to Jefferson Area Board for Aging, or JABA, Monday afternoon. Many may know JABA as a senior center, but McAuliffe came to the preschool in the building to discuss his education plans.

“Let’s make sure we continue to progress and get every one of these children access to a early childhood education because it was transformative for our children,” Terry McAuliffe said.

Terry McAuliffe and his wife Dorothy say it’s places like JABA that are so transformative and helpful for children.

“It’s intergenerational,” Dorothy McAuliffe said. “So we have seniors who come here as well. And the educational opportunities, the emotional, social development for young people as well as for the seniors, it’s just a really thriving center and we need to do everything we can to support places like this.”

By supporting, they mean investing money in education and increasing teacher pay. McAuliffe says he will do both if elected governor.

“It’s important to come see these success stories,” Terry McAuliffe said. “And you know we all see this and then we go back and we use it sort of as a model that we have to do in the rest of the commonwealth.”

The preschool at JABA is only a small portion of the building, but it represents a bigger theme to McAuliffe, and Pamela Northam: creating more spaces like this.

“Twenty-five thousand 3-and-4-year-olds now have access to quality early childhood care and education which is astounding, but it’s still not enough,” Pamela Northam said. “We still know there are thousands of children out there without those opportunities.”

McAuliffe says a successful school is also one where all teachers and kids are vaccinated. He then defended his statement in the most recent debate, about parents having a say in what their kids are taught.

“I was very clear with that,” McAuliffe said. “We don’t teach critical race theory here in the commonwealth of Virginia, and it’s a racist dog whistle, and he’s got to stop. I’m about uniting. Our children should not be used as political pawns.”

McAuliffe says this election is all about taking care of children and women in the workforce, which is why he came to JABA.

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