SACRAMENTO, Calif. /California Newswire/ — Annual Student Achievement Report Confirms Need For Education Reforms Outlined By Pres. Obama And Proposed By Gov. Schwarzenegger In Special Legislative Session. Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger today issued the following statement regarding Education Trust-West’s annual report on student achievement in California:
“This report confirms that, although California’s students are making academic gains, we must take bolder action to put highly effective teachers at the front of our classrooms, turn around our lowest-performing schools and ensure every student can meet our state’s high academic standards. That’s exactly why I called a legislative special session to make the necessary changes in state law to ensure California will be eligible and highly competitive for billions of Recovery education dollars – and why I support President Obama and U.S. Education Secretary Duncan in their push for education reform. Missing the chance to compete for the largest pool of discretionary funding for education reform in U.S. history and enact the reforms necessary to improve student performance is simply unacceptable.”
The report, “Achievement in California 2009: Persistent Challenges and Paths Forward,” shows that student improvement in Standardized Testing and Reporting program performance is not equal across ethnic and socioeconomic groups. Report authors highlight effective strategies that help ensure greater educational equity and access among traditionally underserved and underrepresented student populations, and they urge state leaders to heed the Governor’s call for swift action to get every education dollar possible from the federal economic stimulus package.
Last week, Governor Schwarzenegger called a special session of the Legislature and announced a legislative package to ensure California meets Race to the Top eligibility and competitiveness requirements. Under current law, California is ineligible to apply for Race to the Top, a $4.35 billion competitive grant program in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act designed to support education reform and innovation. Billions of dollars in future federal education funds will rest on the state’s ability to meet the Obama administration’s education reform requirements.