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Jerry Brown on Education

 


No government-imposed standards for public schools

Brown blasted the notion of government-imposed standards for public schools, saying he opposed efforts from Washington and Sacramento to dictate education policy. Using "data on a national or state level I think misses the point--that learning is very individual, very personal," Brown said. "It comes back to the teacher and the principal. The leader of the school is by far the most important factor."

When asked if he supported national education standards, Brown said, "No. That's just a form of national control." Brown reprised a story he tells frequently about an exam he had in high school when a teacher asked students to write their impressions of a green leaf. "Still, as I walk by trees, I keep saying, 'Can I feel anything? Am I dead inside?' So, this was a very powerful question that has haunted me for 50 years." The point, Brown said, is that "you can't put that on a standardized test. There are important educational encounters that can't be captured by tests."

Source: Los Angeles Times on 2014 California Governor race , Dec 16, 2013

Consider subsidiarity: central authority only if local fails

California's public schools are subject to tens of thousands of laws and regulations: [from the] school superintendent [to the] State Board of Education, then Congress which passes laws like "No Child Left Behind," and finally the Federal Department of Education.

This year, as you consider new education laws, I ask you to consider the principle of Subsidiarity. Subsidiarity is the idea that a central authority should only perform those tasks which cannot be performed at a more immediate or local level. In other words, higher or more remote levels of government, like the state, should render assistance to local school districts, but always respect their primary jurisdiction and the dignity and freedom of teachers and students.

Subsidiarity is offended when distant authorities prescribe in minute detail what is taught, how it is taught and how it is to be measured. I would prefer to trust our teachers who are in the classroom each day, doing the real work--lighting fires in young minds.

Source: 2013 State of the State address to California Legislature , Jan 24, 2013

Vetoed considering demographics in college admissions

Gov. Brown vetoed a controversial, affirmative action-like bill that would have allowed public colleges and universities in California to consider demographic factors in admissions processes.

SB 185 would have made it legal for UC and CSU schools to consider factors such as race, gender, ethnicity and national origin in student admissions. The bill had faced scrutiny by those who questioned its legality. Opponents of the bill said that it contradicted Proposition 209. Approved by voters in 1996, the proposition made it illegal for students to receive preferential treatment on the basis of race, gender or ethnicity.

Though Brown said that he agrees with the purpose of the bill, he believes the courts should determine the limits of the proposition, according to a veto message he sent to the State Senate. "Signing this bill is unlikely to impact how Prop. 209 is ultimately interpreted by the courts; it will just encourage the 209 advocates to file more costly and confusing lawsuits," he wrote.

Source: Daily Californian on 2014 California governor's race , Oct 8, 2011

Let people vote to avoid cutting schools & colleges

If you are a Democrat who doesn't want budget reductions in programs you fought for & deeply believe in, I understand that. If you are a Republican who has taken a stand against taxes, I understand where you are coming from. But things are different this time. In fact, the people are telling us--in their own way--that they sense that something is profoundly wrong.

At this moment of extreme difficulty, it behooves us to turn to the people and get a clear mandate on how we should proceed: either to exten the taxes as I fervently believe or cut deeply into the programs from which--under federal law--we can still extract the sums required. Unfortunately, these would most probably include: elementary, middle and high schools, the California State University system, prisons, and vital health programs.

My plan to rebuild California requires a vote of the people, and frankly I believe it would be irresponsible for us to exclude the people from this process. They have a right to vote on this plan.

Source: 2011 California State of the State Address , Jan 31, 2011

Give school districts more flexibility and hold accountable

We need to dramatically simplify the Education Code and give school districts more flexibility on how best to meet state standards. We should hold schools accountable for outcomes, not issue minute prescriptions from Sacramento on how to achieve those outcomes.
Source: 2010 Gubernatorial campaign website, jerrybrown.org , Nov 1, 2010

Other governors on Education: Jerry Brown on other issues:
CA Gubernatorial:
Antonio Villaraigosa
Eric Garcetti
Hilda Solis
Jerry Sanders
CA Senatorial:
Barbara Boxer
Dianne Feinstein

Election 2013:
NJ-R: Chris Christie (won)
NJ-D: Barbara Buono (lost)
VA-R: Bob McDonnell(Retiring)
VA-R: Ken Cuccinelli (lost)
VA-D: Terry McAuliffe (won)

Gubernatorial Debates 2014:
AL: Bentley(R) vs.Griffith(D)
AR: Ross(D) vs.Hutchinson(R) vs.Griffin(R,Lt.Gov.)
AZ: Riggs(R) vs.DuVal(D) vs.Mealer(I)
CA: Brown(D) vs.Kashkari(R)
CO: Hickenlooper(D) vs.Beauprez(R) vs.Tancredo(R) vs.Hess(L)
CT: Malloy(D) vs.Foley(R) vs.Walker(R,Lt.Gov.)
FL: Scott(R) vs.Crist(D)
GA: Deal(R) vs.Carter(D)
HI: Abercrombie(D) vs.Aiona(R)
IA: Branstad(R) vs.Hoefling(R) vs.Hatch(D)
MA: Coakley(D) vs.Grossman(D) vs.Berwick(D) vs.Baker(R)
ME: LePage(R) vs.Michaud(D) vs.Cutler(I)
MI: Snyder(R) vs.Schauer(D)
NM: Martinez(R) vs.King(D)
NY: Cuomo(D) vs.Astorino(R) vs.Hawkins(G) vs.Teachout(D) vs.Hochul(D,Lt.Gov.)
OK: Fallin(R) vs.Dorman(D)
PA: Corbett(R) vs.Wolf(D) vs.Schwartz(D,lost primary) vs.Critz(D,Lt.Gov.,lost primary)
Up for re-election 2014:
AK-R: Sean Parnell
AL-R: Robert Bentley
CA-D: Jerry Brown
CO-D: John Hickenlooper
CT-D: Dan Malloy
FL-R: Rick Scott
GA-R: Nathan Deal
HI-D: Neil Abercrombie
IA-R: Terry Branstad
ID-R: Butch Otter
IL-D: Pat Quinn
KS-R: Sam Brownback
ME-R: Paul LePage
MI-R: Rick Snyder
MN-D: Mark Dayton
NH-D: Maggie Hassan
NM-R: Susana Martinez
NV-R: Brian Sandoval
NY-D: Andrew Cuomo
OH-R: John Kasich
OK-R: Mary Fallin
OR-D: John Kitzhaber
PA-R: Tom Corbett
SC-R: Nikki Haley
SD-R: Dennis Daugaard
TN-R: Bill Haslam
VT-D: Peter Shumlin
WI-R: Scott Walker
WY-R: Matt Mead
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Term-Limited or Retiring 2014:
AR-D: Mike Beebe
AZ-R: Jan Brewer
MA-D: Deval Patrick
MD-D: Martin O'Malley
RI-I: Linc Chafee
TX-R: Rick Perry

 

Page last updated: Jul 12, 2014