State of California
June 8, 2010 Election
The U.S. is facing a shortage of scientists and engineers. With a 70% decline in S&E enrollment in our colleges since the 1980's and an aging workforce, we need someone from industry to step in to help with our schools. We need an educated workforce to keep America going strong.
As a scientist, I am taking on a new challenge - running for the Superintendent of Public Instruction. This position is responsible for funding, testing and accountability. Half of the state budget goes into education. Teachers' salaries are some of the highest in the nation. Students' test scores are some of the lowest. There is a shortage of scientists and engineers. The UC Regents are non-responsive to California's industry needs.
Revisit State Standards and Curriculums.
Garbage in - Garbage out. We are what we teach. Revisit textbooks to ensure time tested materials are being used to teach reading, writing, math, science and history. Remove social engineering from the classroom. Restore critical thinking.
- There is an increasing demand for highly skilled workers.
- Overseas recruiting is more competitive as countries like China and India develop modern economies.
- Aging workforce - average age of engineers and scientists is over 50.
- 70% enrollment decline since 1980's continues for university programs in engineering and sciences.
The action is in the classroom and teachers need to be held accountable. Build on community involvement to create more effective schools.
Reject Federal Money.
Costs of implementation and compliance to No Child Left Behind exceeds the federal funds states receive. If federal programs were successful, it is an investment. This is not the case. We can measure the cost to the taxpayer. How do we measure the cost to our children? There is no `reset' button on a child's life.
- Pay for Performance - State and teachers develop the measuring stick, NOT the federal government.
Testing each child at the beginning and end of each year will give a fair means to measure the effectiveness of a teacher. Additional factors should include peer review, administrative input, professional development and parental input. Reward excellence in teaching. Remove ineffective teachers.
- Charter Schools and California Partnership Academies - High success rates. High parental involvement. High industry support.
Revisit Governor `Pat' Brown's playbook for building good schools. Billions of untapped oil reserves sit off-shore. Let's open up off-shore drilling and pump the tax revenues directly into education.
- Rejecting federal money restores the proper role of government.
- Rejecting federal money restores local control.
- Rejecting federal money restores freedom to implement effective teaching methods.
Estimated economic benefits of increased OCS access:
- More than 14,000 new jobs in California
- 10.4 billion more barrels of oil
- 18 trillion more cubic feet of natural gas
- $3 billion in new economic output
- $691 million in additional employment income
- $12 billion in new government revenue
(WSPA - `California State Lands Commission', 8/2009)
We need effective accountability in our classroom; we need effective management of our natural resources; we need to bring back jobs to California; or we need to help our best and brightest pack as they move out of California.
I am asking for your support. Six million kids in our schools need your support.
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