First Lady Jill Biden in a Milwaukee speech Wednesday praised Gov. Tony Evers and Lt. Gov. Mandela Barnes for spending millions of dollars on education.

Biden, a writing professor at a Virginia community college, said the two have been great partners to President Joe Biden in giving educators the resources they need. At the Milwaukee Teachers’ Education Association event, she touted Evers’ investments in mental health services, reducing class sizes, and retaining and recruiting teachers.

Biden also urged the crowd of union members to get organized and involved.

“If we want to rebuild the middle class, if we want to protect women’s rights and Social Security, we need leaders,” she said at the Washington Park Senior Center. “We need leaders who will stand up for you and your students. And that’s why we all need to get involved, because you know what’s at stake, and because this union knows how to get things done.”

Barnes, who didn’t attend President Biden’s Labor Day speech in Milwaukee, greeted Jill Biden, according to her staff. Barnes’ mother, a teacher, was on stage with Biden and other union members.

Following the speech, Biden visited a “Homework Diner” at Westside Academy in Milwaukee. Students were working on homework and other academic activities while eating dinner with teachers.

The public school for pre-kindergarten through fifth grade is part of a collaboration with the United Way to involve families in school activities and decision making.

Principal Renee Drane said a goal is to make parents feel comfortable at the school.

“We hear so often that it’s parents vs. the teachers and that’s not really true at all,” Biden said. “This is just another opportunity to further those relationships.”

Evers and first lady Kathy Evers joined Biden at the school.

The Republican National Committee knocked the visit, coming less than a month before the midterm elections.

“Jill Biden photo-ops won’t erase the fact that Joe Biden and Tony Evers failed Wisconsin families when they locked kids out of the classroom and prioritized the teachers’ union agenda to minimize charter and school choice opportunities for students,” said RNC Spokesperson Rachel Reisner.

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