Arnold Schwarzenegger on Education

Republican CA Governor


2005: slow the rate of increase of education spending

In June 2005, Schwarzenegger backed ballot initiatives for educational reform. Proposition 76 would have authorized the governor to slow the rate of increase of state spending on education and other public services. Education spending is always a heated topic, so it was no shock that a poll showed 35% supported Proposition 76 while 42% opposed it.

However, Proposition 74--increasing the amount of time it takes for teachers to gain tenure from two to five years--and Proposition 75--requiring unions to obtain their members' permission to use any portion of union dues for political donations--were initially very popular, earing 61% and 57% approval, respectively.

These two measures threatened the power of unions and would have substantially weakened the Sacramento political machine. So the machine responded with total war. It was the most expensive special election in history. The result: the ballot initiatives were defeated.

Source: To Save America, by Newt Gingrich, p. 75 , May 17, 2010

Until now, children were trapped in low-performing schools

And there are two accomplishments in particular I want to recognize here today. Just last night the Assembly passed major educational reform, reform that once seemed impossible but now will become law as soon as it hits my desk.

For too many years, too many children were trapped in low-performing schools. The exit doors may as well have been chained. Now, for the first time, parents--without the principal's permission--have the right to free their children from these destructive schools. That is great freedom.

Also in the past, parents had no power to bring about change in their children's schools but that will now change too. Parents will now have the means to get rid of incompetent principals and take other necessary steps to improve their children's education.

And to increase accountability, we finally broke down that firewall so that teachers' performance can be linked to students' performance.

Source: California 2010 State of the State Address , Jan 6, 2010

Maintain foster care past 18 if finishing high school

Legislative Summary: AB1633: This bill would extend the opportunity to remain in foster care placement beyond the age of 18 years to a foster child who is pursuing a high school equivalency certificate.

California Youth Connection analysis: This new law reinforces the need for everyone working with foster youth to educate youth about their education rights and available resources so that youth receive the help they need to graduate and are able to advocate for themselves.

Legislative Outcome: Passed Senate 29-11-0 on Aug/23/05; Passed Assembly 53-25-1 on Aug/29/05; Signed by Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger on Oct/7/05

Source: Cal. Youth Connection on California AB1633 voting records , Oct 7, 2005

Inner city schools need more attention and funding

I got involved with after-school programs in the inner cities. I started the inner city games after-school programs that are now nationwide and we are reaching out to 200,000 children. Because kids in the inner cities get disadvantaged with education, especially just recently with cuts of $120 million in textbooks which is supposed to be for those inner city schools, which is unfair. We need to make sure that our kids get great education, education everywhere, and this is what I’m fighting for.
Source: Recall Debate, Cal. State Univ. at Sacramento , Sep 24, 2003

Prop 49 was the responsible way to get after school programs

HUFFINGTON [to Schwarzenegger]: The passage of Prop 49 has not provided after school care for a single child in the state of California, because there was no funding stream. It was nothing but a photo opportunity initiative. It was nothing but a springboard for your run for governor. And it is really irresponsible for you tell us that you are providing after school care. Isn’t it true that not a single child has gotten after school care because of Prop 49?

SCHWARZENEGGER: Our after school programs are providing after school programs for 200,000 kids. Proposition 49 was the responsible way of going about it to get after school programs. Because what the initiative says is, there’s a trigger mechanism, only when the state makes an additional $1.5 billion in revenue, then the program can get funded. Right now we have a financial crisis, that’s why it’s not getting funded.

Source: [Xref Huffington] Recall Debate, Cal. State U. at Sacramento , Sep 24, 2003

Measure student progress and school progress

Source: 2003 Gubernatorial campaign website, JoinArnold.com , Aug 29, 2003

Supports school prayer

The actor said he supports allowing schools to decide whether prayer will be part of their day.
Source: CNN.com coverage , Aug 28, 2003

Prop 49: afterschool programs for all children

Arnold has been a strong supporter of education. Proposition 49 is an example of his commitment to providing California’s children with opportunities to learn and his willingness to think outside-the-box to achieve those goals. Regarding the passage of Proposition 49: “Every California child deserves access to a proven, quality, life-changing afterschool program, and now they will have it. My hope is that, as goes California, so goes the rest of our nation.”
Source: Grassroots website, www.ArnoldGovernor.net, FAQ , Aug 17, 2003

Afterschool programs for all kids by the year 2010

Actor and children’s advocate Arnold Schwarzenegger invited afterschool supporters to join a new “crusade” to make afterschool programs available to all children by the year 2010 as the first-ever After School Summit concluded. The 2-day Summit featured Secretary of Education Rod Paige and included numerous other Administration officials, leading researchers, afterschool providers, educators, parents, students, law enforcement officials, resource providers and others from around the nation.
Source: AfterschoolAlliance.org website, “Arnold Summit” , Jun 6, 2003

Supports public school choice and community control

Source: 2003 Gubernatorial campaign website, JoinArnold.com , Aug 29, 2003

Supports limited school vouchers

The actor said he is in favor of limited school vouchers
Source: CNN.com coverage , Aug 28, 2003

Participate in federal program Race to the Top.

Schwarzenegger signed Letter from 9 Governors to Secretary of Education Duncan

Our states need more time to properly evaluate the changes needed to resubmit our applications, as well as to engage in meaningful and collaborative discussions with our legislatures, our schools, our unions, and our communities. We need to make informed changes to our applications, whether in the area of evaluations, turnarounds, standards, or data collection. These changes will be stronger if they are informed by the comments of those who reviewed our initial application.

Therefore, we request that you considerably accelerate the timeline for release of peer reviewers' comments and scores from Phase One or extend the deadline to submit our Phase 2 application until July 1, 2010; so our states can continue the necessary hard work, without losing momentum, to reform education and apply for Race to the Top Phase Two. As Governors -- Republicans and Democrats alike -- we were proud to stand with President Obama, and with you, to bring about real systemic change in education through the Race to the Top competition. Under the first phase of competition, you saw forty states and the District of Columbia respond to your call. While only fifteen states and the District of Columbia were selected as finalists for Phase One, we all remain committed to pursuing necessary reforms to help ensure that our states' applications are competitive for the second phase of funding.

The finalists were announced on March 4, with applications for next round due less than 90 days later on June 1. You also announced that our comments and feedback on our applications would not be available until sometime in April, which would further reduce that already short timeline for meaningful course correction to fewer than 60 days.

Source: Letter from 9 Governors to Secretary of Education Duncan 100316-Gov on Mar 16, 2010

Other candidates on Education: Arnold Schwarzenegger on other issues:
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George W. Bush (R,2001-2009)
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Bill Clinton (D,1993-2001)
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George Bush Sr. (R,1989-1993)
Ronald Reagan (R,1981-1989)
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Page last updated: Oct 26, 2021