Rushville Republican

News

January 23, 2013

Gov. Pence's State of the State address

(Continued)

RUSHVILLE — When it comes to our public schools, I believe we should fund excellence

in our

schools and our teachers.

That's why we proposed an increase in funding for schools each of the

next two years,

with the second year based on school performance and an additional $6

million in

 teacher excellence grants to increase pay for our high-performing

teachers.

We must continue to take steps to ensure that every third grader can

read, to promote

math proficiency by elementary students and to invest in highly

successful drop-out

prevention programs like Jobs for America's Graduates.

And our administration also will work with our new Superintendent of

Public Instruction

to cut the red tape that teachers face in the classroom, and let them

teach. Our

 children will get the best education when good teachers have the freedom

to teach

and are rewarded for excellence.

I have long believed that parents should be able to choose where their

children

go to school, regardless of their income. We must continue to expand

educational

 opportunities, especially for those with the fewest resources, beginning

with pre-K

education.

High-quality early education programs can have immediate and long-term

positive

effects for our kids. Many communities across Indiana are already

launching efforts

to provide pre-K programs for at-risk children. One of the best examples

is the

Busy Bees Academy in Columbus, which serves at-risk and disadvantaged

children in

my hometown. Let's work together to expand incentives for Hoosiers to

support this

kind of innovative, community-driven pre-K effort for our low-income

children.

In recent years, Indiana has given parents who previously had few choices

the ability

to choose the public or private school that best meets the needs of their

family.

This fall, more than 9,000 students attended a school of their choice.

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