"The whole people must take upon themselves the education of the whole people and be willing to bear the expenses of it. There should not be a district of one mile square, without a school in it, not founded by a charitable individual, but maintained at the public expense of the people themselves." -- John Adams

"No money shall be drawn from the treasury, for the benefit of any religious or theological institution." -- Indiana Constitution Article 1, Section 6.

"...no man shall be compelled to frequent or support any religious worship, place, or ministry whatsoever, nor shall be enforced, restrained, molested, or burthened in his body or goods, nor shall otherwise suffer on account of his religious opinions or belief; but that all men shall be free to profess, and by argument to maintain, their opinion in matters of religion, and that the same shall in no wise diminish enlarge, or affect their civil capacities." – Thomas Jefferson

Thursday, October 16, 2014

A Chance to Fix Our Mistake


Two years ago the voters of Indiana elected Glenda Ritz to the office of State Superintendent of Public Instruction.

Her opponent, incumbent Tony Bennett, ran on a platform of continuing reform...more vouchers, continued increase in charters, more testing, evaluating teachers using tests, weakening teachers unions, lowered standards for education professionals...and the usual "reformy"-type attacks on public schools and teachers.

Glenda Ritz ran on a platform of more control by local school boards, fewer tests (including getting rid of IREAD-3), higher standards for educators, eliminating the A-F ratings for public schools, and more support for public schools/less support for privatization.


We elected Glenda Ritz, but we got Tony Bennett's platform. In the last 2 years, the 1.3 million Hoosier voters who supported Glenda Ritz got...
  • More public money spent on vouchers
  • More public money given to privately run charters
  • More testing
  • Evaluation of teachers using test scores,
  • Less control by local school boards
  • Lowered standards for entry into the teaching profession
  • Continued grading schools A-F based on a flawed metric

In the last 2 years, the teachers of Indiana got...
  • Loss of due process
  • Loss of collective bargaining rights
  • Loss of credit for expertise and experience
  • Evaluations based on the test scores of their students
  • Testing, testing and more testing

In the last 2 years, Glenda Ritz got...
  • Constant disrespect and attacks by members of the State Board of Education
  • Blatant disrespect by the governor (who received fewer votes than she did)
  • A wasteful new bureaucracy created by the governor (CECI) to undermine her role as Indiana's education leader and to usurp the authority of the Indiana DOE


The voters of Indiana have a chance to finish the job they started when they voted for Glenda Ritz in 2012. Elect friends of public education to the state legislature and help Glenda Ritz do the job we elected her to do.

There are 1.3 million of us who voted for Glenda Ritz because we wanted changes in the state's public education policies. We then turned around and voted for other state officeholders who have prevented her from doing what we asked her to do. It's time to fix that mistake and elect legislators and officeholders who will
  1. return control of local schools to local school boards
  2. reduce the overuse and misuse of standardized testing
  3. restore professionalism to teachers and treat them with the respect they are due
  4. restore economic and community support for Indiana's public schools
  5. earmark public tax dollars to public schools, not private corporations
Choose to support your local public schools.


All who envision a more just, progressive and fair society cannot ignore the battle for our nation’s educational future. Principals fighting for better schools, teachers fighting for better classrooms, students fighting for greater opportunities, parents fighting for a future worthy of their child’s promise: their fight is our fight. We must all join in.

Stop the Testing Insanity!


No comments: