FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
DATE: May 2, 2013
CONTACT: Brett Broesder, Communications Director at ConnCAN
PHONE: (203) 772-4017 ext. 19; MOBILE: (406) 565-0083
CT Governor Malloy, kids and parents urge state legislators to continue education reforms
“We need to keep working to improve student achievement in our schools because a strong education system means a stronger Connecticut.” – Governor Dannel P. Malloy
Hartford, CT – Less than two weeks after the Connecticut General Assembly’s Appropriations Committee gutted $47.1 from education reforms in their budget proposal, Governor Dannel P. Malloy joined families from across the state at the Capitol today, urging lawmakers not to back down from investments in our kids.
“A stronger commitment to educating our children for tomorrow’s jobs will make Connecticut a place where companies want to invest and hire people, and where our strong communities help to create an even stronger economy,” said Gov. Malloy. “That’s why we need to keep working to improve student achievement in our schools because a strong education system means a stronger Connecticut.”
The education reform bill, which passed last year with overwhelming support by the state legislature and was signed into law by the governor (Public Act 12-116), takes essential steps to close Connecticut's worst-in-the-nation achievement gap, raises standards for educators, allows immediate action to improve failing schools, and increases access to high-quality public school choices.
“For students like me, access to a great public charter school can make a huge difference,” said William Langley, a student at Amistad High School in New Haven. “That’s why lawmakers need to keep the promises made my classmates and me because charter schools are public schools, and we deserve to be treated just like every other public school student across the state."
In February, Gov. Malloy submitted a budget that protects last year’s education reforms. Unfortunately, the General Assembly’s Appropriations Committee recently decided to break their promise to kids across Connecticut by gutting $47.1 million from key education reform measures (click here for a side-by-side comparison of the governor’s budget proposal and that of the Appropriations Committee).
"While we cannot guarantee that every child will succeed, we have a responsibility to ensure that every child has the opportunity to work hard and achieve their goals," said Representative Douglas McCrory, vice-chairman of the Education Committee (D – Hartford). "We know times are tough, but it would be wrong to back down from education reform efforts that help ensure every child have access to a good public school, regardless of race, wealth or zip code."
Families across Connecticut want state legislators and the governor to continue investing in education reforms. A recent Global Strategy Group survey of more than 600 Connecticut voters found that 73 percent – 79 percent of Democrats and 64 percent of Republicans – support continuing the education reforms included in last year’s landmark law.
“Right now, state leaders have a choice: dial back education reforms for our kids, or make the right investments so that every child gets access to the great teachers, principals, and public schools they deserve," said Jennifer Alexander, chief executive officer for the Connecticut Coalition for Achievement Now. “We’re urging state legislators to protect education reforms that ensure all students have an equal opportunity to succeed. We cannot allow success to be limited only to families who can afford it.”
About Connecticut Coalition for Achievement Now (ConnCAN)
The Connecticut Coalition for Achievement Now (ConnCAN) is an advocacy organization building a movement of concerned Connecticut citizens working to create fundamental change in our education system. To learn more, visit: www.conncan.org.