education

Brandon Smith / Indiana Public Broadcasting

House Republican budget architect Tim Brown says his caucus’ proposed budget will include more money spent on education than ever before in state history.  The House GOP’s budget proposal was unveiled Monday.

House Republican leaders have said for months that education was their top priority this session and that they planned a significant increase in funding for K through 12 schools. 

To that end, House Ways and Means Chair Tim Brown says, under the House GOP budget, schools would get $469 million more over the next two years than they did in the last state budget.

Protesters Pack Statehouse in Support of Ritz

Feb 17, 2015
Rachel Morello / StateImpact Indiana

Educators, parents and even a few kids out of school for the snow day packed the statehouse in Indianapolis Monday to show support for state superintendent Glenda Ritz.

Icy relations have become the norm among the state’s top education policymakers, including Ritz, Governor Mike Pence, the State Board of Education and the Department of Education.

Courtesy / State of Indiana

The Indiana Department of Education says it will proceed as planned to issue the ISTEP+ exam beginning Feb. 25, even after Gov. Mike Pence signed an executive order Monday to re-evaluate the test’s length.

Even though the test could change -- after the testing consultant hired through Pence’s executive order issues recommendations on how to shorten it -- the DOE says they are preparing school districts as if the test will not change.

Deputy state superintendent Danielle Shockey says Pence’s actions only add to the confusion in preparing for this year’s ISTEP.

House Backs Bill Removing Ritz

Feb 10, 2015
Indiana Department of Education.

The House passed a bill Monday to remove the state superintendent as chair of the State Board of Education, a move some say is politically motivated.

Historically, the state superintendent has automatically assumed the position of state board  chair. This bill changes the law defining that responsibility, allowing board members to elect a  chair from within their ranks.  

The word “dysfunction” has appeared in countless descriptions of board relations since current  State Superintendent Glenda Ritz, a Democrat, took office.

Obama Touts Community College Plan in Indianapolis

Feb 6, 2015
Courtesy / White House

President Obama says other states should follow Ivy Tech Community College’s lead when it comes to connecting students to high paying jobs. The president traveled to Indianapolis Friday to tout his plans aimed at getting more people on the track to better wages.

During the event at Ivy Tech, Obama once again explained his plan to make two years of community college free.

Virginia Alvino / WBOI News

Superintendents from all four public school districts in Allen County joined  Greater Fort Wayne Inc. Thursday to call for more funding for all districts in the  state. 

Districts across Indiana are facing budget problems – from the base amount every  district is afforded by the state, to the amount they’re allowed to collect from  property taxes, every Northeast Indiana superintendents agree – it’s not enough to  support their schools.   

Brandon Smith / Indiana Public Broadcasting

Indiana Democratic Party Chairman John Zody says Republicans need to halt their partisan attacks on State Superintendent Glenda Ritz.

There are multiple bills this session that shift power away from Glenda Ritz’s office to the GOP-controlled State Board of Education. 

That includes a proposal to allow the State Board to elect its own chair, a position currently filled automatically by the Superintendent. 

State Democratic Party Chair John Zody says the measures are an attempt to silence the 1.3 million Hoosiers who voted Ritz into office in 2012.

Indiana General Assembly

A new bill would require prospective elementary school teachers in Indiana to be able to identify dyslexia in their students. 

Research suggests dyslexia is among the most common learning disabilities, affecting ten to twenty percent of the population. The precise number is unknown since so many people go undiagnosed.

House Bill 1108 would require new elementary school teachers to be able to recognize learning disabilities that affect reading, including dyslexia.

Republican Representative Woody Burton authored the bill.

"No Child Left Behind" Changes Could Be on the Way

Jan 12, 2015

Change could be coming to the nation’s cornerstone education law, No Child Left Behind.

During a speech Monday, U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan called on Congress to rework the statute.

The law, signed by former President George W. Bush in 2002, originally meant what its name suggests: that no child should fail state tests in math, reading and science. It called for 100 percent of students to be proficient in those skills by 2014.

Brandon Smith / Indiana Public Broadcasting

Governor Mike Pence says he wants the 2015 meeting of the General Assembly to be an “education session,” and the budget Pence proposed Thursday shares that focus.

The proposal contains a $200 million increase in K-12 school funding over the next two years. That includes about $41 million more specifically set aside for charter schools. 

Office of Management and Budget Director Chris Atkins says that money would be used to increase per-pupil funding by $1,500 and would reduce inequity between funding of charters and traditional public schools.

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