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Survey

5. Promote Educational Excellence (32% of surveyed members)

Basic Principle: Although differences remain as to what reforms to support, republicans are committed to educational excellence in support of the goal of leaving no child behind. Our public education system is not producing results. Our youth "feel" more competent but consistently perform at low levels of achievement compared to other industrial countries. A strong education system that works is very important to the future of our country. Ignorance is dangerous not only to our children but to our way of life.

"We can rally around Education reform. Better teachers (more incentive-pay and accountability), a more comprehensive curriculum and a broader scope of evaluating student achievement." Billy Cornett

"Accountability in Education means setting standards to leave no child behind." Judy Biviano Lloyd, Bay Area Regional Chair, Bush-Cheney 2000

"Local people should have more control over how their children are to be educated. We have to trust parents as to what is best for their children." James E Mertzel DDS

"The voucher issue is quite divisive and does not play well with the general public. However, the issue can be approached by first promoting a voucher concept within the public system--that is, to allow parents to enroll their children in any public school that meets their students' needs. That concept is common in the higher education realm but not in K-12. Why not? The faculty in higher education has unions, too, but they also have to compete for customers, and the customers (students) direct where the public dollars go." Karin Dowdy

"RETURN CONTROL TO LOCAL LEVEL AND EVENTUALLY SCHOOL CHOICE FOR PARENTS: The school system has been a complete disaster, and the children are the victims. The attempt to standardize education at the State level so that all children would receive the same level of education, no matter rich or poor, black or white, has led to a lower standard for schools that excelled while not helping those for whom the reforms were made. More than that, it has led to unreasonable power for the California Teachers Association. The leaders of CTA are, for the most part, not teachers, but use their name and power to speak in their name. Again, this has not been for the benefit of students, nor even for the teachers on the front lines. These leaders' cushy jobs are at stake, and they lean on and support the Democratic Party to keep them. Returning local control to the schools would help School Boards meet the needs of their own students, not meet mandates that eat up valuable resources like time, money and endless reams of paper." Rosemary Loven, Director, Region I, Central Division, California Federation of Republican Women

"Education - Stay away from School vouchers (do not feel we have the votes to get that passed), but push for more charter schools. They are proving to be a success." Tony Dart, Santa Maria, Santa Barbara County

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