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Children Now's Lempert regarding the recommendations released today by the Committee on Educational Excellence

Mar 14, 2008

OAKLAND, CA—The following is a statement by Ted Lempert, president of Chlidren Now, regarding the recommendations released today by Gov. Schwarzenegger’s Committee on Educational Excellence:

“Children Now applauds the committee’s recommendations. California’s education system is clearly in need of both bold systemic reforms and more funding.

“We have an opportunity and obligation—even in this tough budget year—to lay the groundwork for important reforms and increased investment in public education. This report informs the dialogue and should push leaders in the Legislature, education, business and children’s advocacy communities to work together to develop a plan that has clear benefits for all parties involved, especially children.

“The report highlights the need to support all children with the clear educational advantage of quality preschool, and access to data to improve instruction and learning. The achievement gap begins before kids ever reach kindergarten, and preschool helps close that gap. In addition, this year, as a first step, the Governor and Legislature should adopt the framework and governance structure for a comprehensive information system for education. This new system should connect preschool, K-12, higher education and workforce data. Teachers and principals need better information to effectively address the individual needs of students. Local and state policymakers need it to make thoughtful decisions; the public needs it to hold the system accountable.

“California is the information technology capital of the world. We really have no excuse for not having a comprehensive data system for one of our state’s most critical investments: the education of our children.”

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