Office of the Lieutenant Governor of Iowa

Lieutenant Governor Reynolds

What they’re saying about Branstad-Reynolds’ education transformation blueprint

October 5, 2011

Governor Terry E. Branstad  Lt. Governor Kim Reynolds

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Wednesday, October 5, 2011
Contact: Governor’s Office (515) 725-3518

What they’re saying about Branstad-Reynolds’ education transformation blueprint

(DES MOINES) – Just 48 hours after Gov. Terry Branstad and Lt. Gov. Kim Reynolds released their blueprint for education transformation, educators, elected officials and community leaders are weighing in on the prospects of restoring Iowa’s leadership position in education.

Here is what Iowans are saying about the Branstad-Reynolds blueprint:

“At some point, we have to stop passing kids along that are not meeting requirements and get them where we need to have them. If you’re passed onto fourth grade and your reading isn’t where it should be, it only makes it more difficult from that moment on. Having that real serious benchmark makes everyone accountable: parent, student, administrators and teachers.” – Brenda Jordahl-Buckles, mother of a 16-year-old junior at Davenport West High School, The Quad City Times
“There are a lot of things to like about Gov. Terry Branstad’s much-anticipated blueprint for K-12 education reform. Increased accountability and support for students, teachers and administrators. Greater flexibility for innovation. Tailored assessments that accurately measure what students are learning and raise a red flag when they are falling behind.” -The Cedar Rapids Gazette editorial
“The governor’s proposal is yet another step in the process of improving education.” – Sen. Herman Quirmbach, D- Ames, The Des Moines Register

“I’m thrilled that we are talking about student outcomes, and I’m looking forward to getting more details.”- Iowa House Speaker Kraig Paulsen, R-Hiawatha, The Sioux City Journal

“I think it’s fair to say that most of the superintendents across the state are very supportive of the effort to make changes that allow us to once again, hopefully become the top education state.” – Dr. Theron Schutte, Bettendorf Superintendent, KWQC
“All great athletes have a coach, all great performers have a coach of some sort. We must recognize that great educators, great superintendents must also have great coaches behind them, that are challenging them to think in new ways.” – Dr. Paul Gausman, Sioux City Superintendent, KPTH
“Teachers today need more training and they need to be better prepared to walk into the classroom, so I’m excited to see we’re taking some pro-active steps to make that happen.” – Meg Frideres, teacher, KCCI

“Overall, I’m just thrilled we have something to respond to. I wasn’t sure what we were going to get, but this is a great starting point,” – Bridgette Wagoner, director of educational services for the Waverly-Shell Rock School District, Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier

“They recognize that Iowa, as a state, has to attract and support great educators,” – Steve Murley, Iowa City Superintendent, The Cedar Rapids Gazette
“I think it’s certainly a great jumping off point. It’s bound to generate some great conversation.” – Lew Finch, executive director of the Urban Education Network of Iowa, The Cedar Rapids Gazette
“They’re no longer just competing in Iowa or Nevada, but globally and to do that they need a different set of skills than we were giving them previously.” – Justin Gross., Nevada High School Principal, KCCI

“I think educators and administrators in Iowa believe that we do need to move forward. We do need to get better. If this helps with that, we’ll be supportive.” – Dan Smith, executive director of the School Administrators of Iowa, The Cedar Rapids Gazette
“I’m sure what they did was look throughout the states and internationally for best practices,” he said. “So it has great promise, once we have our debates and we determine what is best to move Iowa forward.” – Art Tate, Davenport Community School District Superintendent, The Quad City Times
“Students need content knowledge, but they also need the skills to be critical thinkers, problem solvers, independent.” – Heather Ludwig, teacher, KCCI

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