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Response to State of the Union Address

The Learning First Alliance has posted a number of education organizations' responses to last week's State of the Union address. As Anne O'Brien of LFA notes in her blog post, education was not one of the main focuses of President Obama's remarks (SOTU video here; speech text here), save for a call to states to keep students in school and this comment about the importance of good teachers:

"Teachers matter. So instead of bashing them, or defending the status quo, let's offer schools a deal. Give them the resources to keep good teachers on the job, and reward the best ones. And in return, grant schools flexibility: to teach with creativity and passion; to stop teaching to the test; and to replace teachers who just aren't helping kids learn. That's a bargain worth making."

The roundup of comments from the education community, including analysis from the NEA, AFT, National School Boards Association and others, is worth a read.

To these analyses we would simply add that Learning Forward is pleased the president keeps emphasizing the need to ensure that all teachers get the support they need to be successful. Great teachers do need to be rewarded, and effective professional learning is the most valuable tool we have to ensure that all teachers are effective and all students experience great teaching. We remain committed to assisting the Department of Education as it seeks new ways to ensure that all educators engage in effective professional learning every day so every student achieves.

Stephanie Hirsh
Executive Director, Learning Forward

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