Tuesday, June 28, 2011

UPDATED: NUT Report: Republican Candidate Views on Education Reform

While the media remains deaf, dumb, and blind when it comes to education reform, a growing corp of smart fact-based bloggers keep the rest of us informed. Some are conservative and some are liberal, but all are concerned about the current federal education policies.

Shane Vander Hart of Caffeinated Thoughts interviewed several Republican candidates for President regarding their views on education and posted on Truth in American Education.

Michelle Bachmann

Vander Hart's interview with Michelle Bachmann, including a video, is found here. Bachmann proposes the end of the U.S. Department of Education, does not like NCLB, and says this about education:
“I am not a fan of No Child Left Behind, I never have been. I oppose the federal government’s involvement in local schools. I attended great public schools in Iowa when I first started my education. I was here (in Waterloo) for kindergarten through sixth grade. They were great public schools because they were locally controlled and locally put together by our local schools… by our parents and by our teachers and local administrators. Now with the federal government taking more and more authority away from the local schools, it is very hard to have meaningful change in our schools. I would prefer to see the Federal Department of Education abolished and done away with, and instead I’d rather see parents and states keep the monies that are sent to Washington, D.C. It ends up in the bureaucracy.

Rick Santorum

The interview with Rick Santorum is found here and reveals that Santorum disapproves with top down education regulation and points to parents as the most important element in education.

SVH: “In your opinion, the federal government should or shouldn’t advance core curriculum standards?”

Santorum: “No. I mean I don’t think that is their role. I think that the federal government’s role, if there is any, as I would see it, is to get the school systems to focus on parent-centered education. And say that we’re going to back off all of these ‘this is how you have to this and this and this’ and say let’s just get to where every parent at the beginning of the school year, a couple months before the school year and sits down with the administrator or somebody and says ‘this is what we are going to do for your kids and the school system. We are going to take it plan by plan, and we are going to design the plan and that means if they are going to go to West Des Moines Elementary then that’s great. Because you know what? That may fit Suzy best.’ There may be a Christian school where Mom and Dad may think she’ll do better or homeschool where she’ll do better or Catholic school where she’ll do better. Then the responsibility for the school is to help you. There may be resources we can give you. There may be remedial programs…’ Design a program that fits. You may say, ‘well you can’t do that it’s just too complicated.”

Mitt Romney

This isn't an interview, but rather a report. Vander Hart refers to Romney's response to a question he answered in New Hampshire and to his response to a similar question in March 2010 in a Cavuto interview. The answers are not the same.
Read more here.
View the town hall Q&A here. The question is posed by a representative of New Hampshire non-profit Cornerstone Action.

Tim Pawlenty

UPDATE: Another post from Vander Hart with a video of candidate Tim Pawlenty answering a question on education. View the video here.

Rick Perry

Although reported as still considering a run for President, Texas Governor Rick Perry made the news on the education front. He has decided to quit the Council of State Chief Officers because he disagrees with the national common core standard initiative.
Read about Perry's announcement on Scathing Purple Musings.

Newt Gingrich

More reporting from Vander Hart covering candidate Newt Gingrich on his views of education. The full report and an audio file are available here.

Gingrich would return most of the power of the Department of Education and send it back to "states, local communities, and citizens." He also opposes a national core curriculum.

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