Association of American Educators Commends President Obama and Governor Romney for Focusing on Education
Alexandria, VA– This week both President Obama and Governor Romney turned their attention to the growing education crisis in the United States, signaling a new focus on education reform as an emerging campaign issue. On Monday, the Obama administration announced a new round of Race to the Top competitive grants, and in two high-profile speeches, Mitt Romney outlined his potential education plans to the electorate.
Today, the Association of American Educators (AAE) applauded the emergence of education as a key common theme in both campaigns. AAE Executive Director Gary Beckner made the following statement:
"We are thrilled that both President Obama and Governor Romney are paying serious attention to the need for meaningful education reform in the United States. As Governor Romney said, many students are struggling under a broken system and we can't afford to wait for systemic change. Hopefully, their initiatives will signal a shift to a renewed focus and respectful dialogue about reforming our education system for all stakeholders.
AAE members have supported many of the accountability reforms President Obama has championed during the last three years. Similarly, Governor Romney's call for expanding certain policies, including the expansion of charter schools and the need for local control, resonate with our membership. Clearly both candidates have ambitious education plans and we encourage all teachers to stay abreast of the issues that affect them in the classroom.
It's important to note that while policymakers champion new and innovative ideas in education, it's critical that real educators' opinions and experiences are taken into account as these reforms are considered and implemented. Where we see the biggest challenge is in the special interest of the teacher labor unions that time and time again fight to preserve the status quo. Given the NEA's 2011 endorsement, President Obama's willingness to support relevant policies that conflict with the agenda of his high-profile constituency could prove difficult. Time will tell.
As a member-driven organization, AAE is proud to represent teachers across the country that are willing to embrace commonsense reform for the sake of our students. For too long, the interests of national teacher labor unions have stalled or blocked policies that would have helped students. We look forward to weighing in on effective policy that fairly balances the needs of teachers, parents, students, and communities."
The Association of American Educators (AAE) is the largest national, non-union, professional educators organization, advancing the profession by offering a modern approach to teacher representation and educational advocacy, as well as promoting professionalism, collaboration and excellence without a partisan agenda. AAE members are forward-thinking professionals who are committed to student-centered reform efforts including school/teacher choice, accountability and technology. AAE has members in all 50 states and welcomes professionals from all education entities. Membership is $15 per month which includes $2 million professional liability insurance, employment rights coverage, professional development resources as well as a host of other benefits. Visit aaeteachers.org for further information.