Flanked by Bush, Corbett talks education

Republican gubernatorial candidate Tom Corbett unveiled his education platform today during a visit to a York charter school.

Corbett was joined by former Florida Governor Jeb Bush, who made education reform a centerpiece of his two terms in Tallahassee.

Corbett wants to change the way the commonwealth’s teachers are evaluated by looking at student testing data, but also creating individual benchmarks for each educator.

He’s promising to work with teachers’ unions to put the evaluation changes into place.

Corbett says he supports the Rendell Administration’s increase in state basic education funding, but he wants to improve accountability benchmarks, to make sure schools are taking advantage of the money. He’s calling for an A through F school grading system, which would include student test scores, graduation rates and other factors.

There was an interesting moment during the press conference, when Corbett was discussing his plan changing teacher evaluations. Bush asked to speak, and then praised President Barack Obama’s education policies. “There’s a new ally in this, and his name is President Obama,” Bush said. “It’s an interesting time for people that believe that more accountability, teacher effectiveness and rewards for higher teacher effectiveness is a key to rising student achievement. When the President of the United States and his secretary of education are challenging the very union that you bring up, by saying, ‘we’re going to become child-centered, not adult-centered.’”

After the event, I asked Bush why he’s endorsing Corbett’s campaign. “I think the era of big government is over,” he said.

Bush added Corbett’s “practical experience” as a statewide officer is helpful, too.

About pubradiopolitics
Scott covers state government and politics for Pennsylvania's public radio stations, including WITF in Harrisburg, WHYY in Philadelphia and WDUQ in Pittsburgh.

One Response to Flanked by Bush, Corbett talks education

  1. Pingback: Sound Bites: Jeb Bush campaigns for Corbett | Politics PA

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