Pence Offers Assistance to Resolve Board of Education Issues

16 Nov

Gazette Staff

Governor Mike Pence sent the following letter to members of the State Board of Education attempting to resolve the conflict among the members. State Superintendent of Public Instruction Glenda Ritz, a member of the Board, recently sued other members of the Board alleging violations of Indiana’s Open Door Law. The lawsuit was later dismissed.

Dear Superintendent Ritz and Members of the State Board of Education:

Let me begin by thanking all of you for your commitment to serving the children of our state through your service on the State Board of Education. Hoosiers are fortunate to have such a talented and dedicated group working on their behalf.

I commend you for the progress you’ve made this year. Most recently I am grateful for your work in committing to a timetable for completion of the 2012-2013 A-F grades, in reaching consensus on the next steps to revise our A-F model, and in passing emergency rules to enable Choice Scholarship schools to serve students who qualify for special education.

Despite this strong progress, I am aware that the Board has had difficulties in working together, and I am writing to offer my Administration’s assistance in finding a solution.

As you are aware, Indiana is a member of the nonprofit National Association of State Boards of Education (NASBE). Founded in 1958, NASBE works to strengthen state leadership in educational policymaking, promote excellence in the education of all students, advocate equality of access to educational opportunity, and assure continued citizen support for public education. The organization has a national perspective on the work of state boards of education, has expertise in best practices and has provided consulting regarding governance of state boards across the nation.

I am writing to inform you that I have reached out to NASBE, and they have agreed to facilitate a discussion within the Indiana State Board of Education to clarify its roles and responsibilities and reach a common understanding regarding the governance procedures. Our Administration is prepared to provide any and all resources and assistance needed to coordinate this process, and I hope the Board will consider this sincere offer to engage NASBE in resolving these present difficulties.

I know you share my belief that it is of the utmost importance to Indiana’s schoolchildren that the differences that have emerged between the Superintendent and the other members of the Board be resolved in a civil and respectful way to restore a spirit of cooperation and trust. The Board has an opportunity to do so in engaging NASBE, which has extensive national experience with state boards of education, governance matters and education issues.

Hoosiers are indebted to each of you for your work on the State Board of Education. On behalf of every student, parent, teacher, and administrator in Indiana, I offer my heartfelt appreciation for the hours that you give to this effort. I am confident that, with this assistance, you will be able to resolve your differences quickly and build on the progress that Indiana has made in educational achievement.

Because of your work test scores are up, graduation rates are up, and the future of education and our young people has never been brighter.

I look forward to your reply regarding this proposal to engage the National Association of State Boards of Education to assist the Indiana State Board of Education in moving forward for the good of all Hoosiers and stand ready to offer any and all assistance in making this happen in a timely manner.

Sincerely

Michael R. Pence
Governor of Indiana

the northwest indiana gazette

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4 Responses to “Pence Offers Assistance to Resolve Board of Education Issues”

  1. Perry MX Stabler via Facebook November 16, 2013 at 6:30 pm #

    🙂

  2. Anonymous November 16, 2013 at 6:53 pm #

    So pence wants to help the State Board of Ed. Well how about this for starters eliminate the puppet board that he set up namely the CECI. Let Ritz do her job instead of throwing roadblocks at her.

  3. Gina Hathaway via Facebook November 17, 2013 at 12:02 am #

    If Pence really wants to help then he needs to dissolve the redundant agency, the Center for Education and Career Innovation (CECI), and let Ritz do the job that an overwhelmingly majority voted for her to do.

    This majority was not just teachers as so many like to claim. It was parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, along with teachers past and present. They saw what Bennett, Daniels, and their appointed cronies were doing one of our biggest hopes for the future: children being used as corporate pawns. They saw what the over abundance of testing was doing to our children: creating mindless drones who are unable to think out side the scan-tron bubbles. They were fed up with having the children of Indiana used as lab-rats for the new federal Common Core.

    Pence’s CECI circumvents and minimizes Ritz’s authority and ability to effectively help and prepare the students of Indiana. He is no longer just a co-chair to the Board of Education. He has made himself the direct over-seer of where education will led and how it will get there. The $5.8 billion taken from Department of Education (http://indianapublicmedia.org/stateimpact/2013/08/26/pences-education-agency/ ) spent creating this new agency, in all its redundancies, and appointees, who have no previous experience with public schools only private and charter schools, could have been better spent on true public schools, helping students and giving teachers the resources to do so all over the state. It is disgusting what Gov. Pence and his cronies of the Board of Education and CECI are doing to our children’s future and the future of the entire state.

  4. Gina Sue November 17, 2013 at 12:14 am #

    If Pence really wants to help then he needs to dissolve the redundant agency, the Center for Education and Career Innovation (CECI), and let Ritz do the job that an overwhelmingly majority voted for her to do.

    This majority was not just teachers as so many like to claim. It was parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, along with teachers past and present. They saw what Bennett, Daniels, and their appointed cronies were doing one of our biggest hopes for the future: children being used as corporate pawns. They saw what the over abundance of testing was doing to our children: creating mindless drones who are unable to think out side the scan-tron bubbles. They were fed up with having the children of Indiana used as lab-rats for the new federal Common Core.

    Pence’s CECI circumvents and minimizes Ritz’s authority and ability to effectively help and prepare the students of Indiana. He is no longer just a co-chair to the Board of Education. He has made himself the direct over-seer of where education will led and how it will get there. The $5.8 billion taken from Department of Education (http://indianapublicmedia.org/stateimpact/2013/08/26/pences-education-agency/ ) spent creating this new agency, in all its redundancies, and appointees, who have no previous experience with public schools only private and charter schools, could have been better spent on true public schools, helping students and giving teachers the resources to do so all over the state. It is disgusting what Gov. Pence and his cronies of the Board of Education and CECI are doing to our children’s future and the future of the entire state.

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