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March 10, 2017 - Volume 37 Issue 6

Nearly a month ago, three key Florida lawmakers set forth their "Fewer Better Tests" legislation with backing from Jeb Bush's Foundation for Excellence in Education. This week, a bipartisan coalition of state senators and House members will be boosting a separate, more far-reaching measure (SB 964/HB 1249). (Tampa Bay Times, March 6) - http://www.tampabay.com/blogs/gradebook/bill-to-cut-back-florida-testing-gains-bipartisan-support/2315499

In New York, education officials continue to prepare for the new federal education law by seeking input on a variety of issues, including whether to pilot new testing procedures. The state Education Department has scheduled dozens of public meetings around the state. (Associated Press, March 3). - https://www.usnews.com/news/best-states/new-york/articles/2017-03-03/ny-education-dept-seeks-input-on-testing-accountability 

“People should not expect the state to protect them from fraudsters. If we do, we get into the habit of neglecting our own powers of intellectual discernment.” -  Julian Baggini (1968 - ), British philosopher, and the author of several books about philosophy written for a general audience. He is co-founder of The Philosophers' Magazine.

 

“We cannot avoid cutting those programs. We want to be an efficient and as compassionate as we can in the manner in which we cut those.” – Senate President Mitch Carmichael on Senate budget plans to cut funding to public education, as well as higher education and programs in the Department of Health and Human Resources

“In terms of education funding, those states without the income tax tend to be near the bottom 10 in terms of funding of education. I’m talking both K through 12 and higher education.” – Mark Muchow, deputy secretary of revenue, on Senate plans to eliminate West Virginia’s personal income tax in favor of a bigger and more broad-based sales tax

“Teacher quality is the most important factor in advancing student learning. Eliminating or not funding our agency cripples the state’s efforts to support teachers and keep them in West Virginia classrooms.” – Lorrie Smith, chief operations officer for the Center for Professional Development, arguing for the survival of her agency at a House Finance Committee budget hearing

“This probably isn’t necessary as a function of government.” – Delegate Saira Blair on a bill to remove a requirement for schools to measure the body mass index of students

“Come hell or high water, we’re going to get these kids some help.” – Senate Education Chairman Kenny Mann on a proposal to put more social workers in schools