However, I did hear Dino shining through in his statement on WASL reform:
"As governor, I alone would lead discussions with the legislature on how to best improve it."
Dino as decider.
"When it comes to education, I have one simple test: What is in the best interest of the children?
We have a serious problem with education in our state when two-thirds of our 10th graders do not pass all parts of the Washington Assessment of Student Learning (WASL) and around 16,000 students dropped out of our high schools in 2005.
It is time for serious education reform that will put students first.
Making education our paramount duty
- Today, too many politicians in Olympia do not treat education funding like it is their paramount duty.
- As governor, I will make funding education one of my top priorities.
Teaching a full school year
- One-third of our public school students are in districts that do not teach a full 180-day school year. I will change that.
Rewarding successful teachers
- We must reward success. Where we see teachers and principals succeeding consistently – I want them to be paid more.
Focusing on math and science
- Our students need to do better in math and science and we must focus our resources on these crucial subjects.
- The current system does not give school districts the flexibility to pay qualified math and science teachers higher salaries. That needs to change so we can attract and keep good math and science teachers.
Letting talented people teach
- Did you know that Bill Gates is not qualified to teach computer science in our schools under current regulations?
- We must make it easier to allow talented people to teach part-time by changing the rules on accreditation.
Overhauling student testing
- I join those who are concerned about whether the WASL is the best measuring tool for student performance.
- As governor, I alone would lead discussions with the legislature on how to best improve it.
Demanding success from our schools
- Standardized testing should be used to judge the system – not just the students. And failure must be dealt with accordingly.
- When we see consistent failure, I want to make it easier for local school districts to encourage failing teachers to find another profession. When a school or school district consistently fails, I want to empower principals and communities to be able to select better teachers and new school board members.
Creating alternatives for students
- The state needs to understand that students who are not successful on the WASL still have the potential to succeed.
- Our schools need more alternative pathways for students who do not necessarily excel on the WASL."