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Iowa House Passes Ambitious Education Reform, with Little Democratic Support

The Iowa House of Representatives passed their version of education last night with minimal bipartisan support. Proponents still called it a stride forward for change in education.

 

So the Iowa House has passed its education reform, prompted on by the reform plan of Governor Terry Branstad. What remains to be seen is if there is an education reform package that will pass the Senate, with its slight Democratic majority, that meet the approval of the governor.

Jason Noble of the Des Moines Register reports that the vote split along party lines in the house, with no Democrats supporting the bill and seven Republicans voting against it as well.

Supporters of the bill said it was a statement of progress for change of education in the state. Iowa City Rep. Mary Mascher continued her opposition to it.

The chamber’s minority doesn’t oppose change, said Rep. Mary Mascher, D-Iowa City, but seeks something different than the bill advanced this year.

“Democrats strongly believe in strengthening our educational system. We support true education reform,” Mascher said. “However, change for change’s sake is not reform.”

Mascher and other Democrats mentioned that they liked some elements of the reform package, but couldn't vote yes for it as it was.

You can read more about the proposed reforms .

Sam Osborne March 16, 2012 at 04:49 PM
Easy to blame the victims of our culture’s shortcomings than to provide better support to those that have had an inadequate supply of it. To impact education that we attempt to provide to children, we should do what we do for good national defense, throw money at education. But it is also hard to scare people about what an eight-year-old child is not doing. If we don’t know or care enough to do anything about children’s incapacity to read, we should do what we have been long done, give them a social promotion rather than marking them as failures. I was fortunate that the folks in charge of my early education did the best they could and then passed me on and on until I ended up where I was quite happy to be. Apparently down in Florida---a land of educational milk and honey that Gov. Branstad wants to emulate by holding kids back from 4th grade it they cannot read up to a standard that he finds acceptable---they have started providing a lot of remedial assistance so that adults don’t have to experience the discomfort of holding a lot of kids back. So why not just provide the help and forget the threat that would be directed at an eight-year-old child. Or if we don’t want to do this, why not turn motivation to read over to the real experts of intimidation, the school-yard bully.

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