Haley Barbour on Education
Republican MS Governor
Community colleges got cut even more when Musgrove was governor, and I'm proud that in my first administration state appropriations for community colleges went up 52%, including a more than doubling of state spending on workforce development and job training... a key to our job creation success.
I'm on record as favoring continued, large increases in funding higher education... increases similar to my first term; but I'll tell you right now, we can't afford that this year. The money won't be there.
Education is our top priority, but we must recognize we won't be able to increase K-12 spending nearly that much this session, unless you're willing to gut other critical programs, which I'm not.
For our beginning teachers, we need to give them more support as they learn to manage a classroom full of kids. We lose a third of our new teachers within three years. Every new teacher in our schools should have an experienced teacher serving as a mentor, and we should pay that mentor an extra $1000 for this valuable service. It is more than worth it.
Reforms passed last year will help, such as giving local leaders more control over their schools. This year, I ask to expand funding an early childhood education initiative that builds on the network of private child care and Head Start centers.
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