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Malloy on Teachers & School Reform

Governor Dannel P. Malloy told a national audience today that teacher concerns about the rapid pace of change in Connecticut public education are real, adding that “we’re going to get through it.”

The governor called teachers “good, hard-working people.” Malloy said, “I probably used the wrong language more than once. I know I have. It’s not because I don’t appreciate what teachers do.”

Malloy’s comments came in an interview this afternoon at the American Enterprise Institute in Washington, D.C.

Malloy talked about the new Common Core State Standards (CCSS) that are being implemented and new CCSS tests—so-called Smarter Balanced Assessments that could be linked to teacher evaluations down the road. According to Malloy, teachers are ready, but that doesn’t mean they are not scared.

Apparently referring to Connecticut’s new teacher evaluation system, Malloy said “the vast majority of Connecticut teachers are doing a great job,” and they will be recognized for this. Malloy said he’s taken steps to make the magnitude of education reform easier on public schools. Connecticut school districts have flexibility on two fronts: administering just one test to students during this school year—the Common Core-aligned Smarter Balanced Assessments or the CMT and CAPT—and giving local school districts the power to decide whether or not to include that test data in teachers’ evaluations.

Malloy took questions from an AEI audience, including one about the legislative battle over Connecticut school reform. Referring to his role, he made a number of comments, including that somebody had to be the leader, somebody had to bring the discussion to communities, and that somebody had to emphasize we needed to change direction in public education.

Malloy said “I had to fly in the face of traditional Democratic constituencies.” He added that reform cannot be accomplished top down. He called it a combination of leadership, getting buy-in, and staying at it year after year.

Click here to watch the full interview.

  1. George P #

    If he CEA endorses this guy again, I will formally request to be let out of the union membership. If it were up to me, we’d keep a few lawyers on retainer for the local and deal with issues as they arise. The CEA was weak and ineffectual during the campaign to force the “reforms” on us and continues to be so. How about some more warm, fuzzy ads letting folks how much we care about children? That really worked, didn’t it? The CEA should have worked to expose the inappropriate (illegal?) relationship between Malloy, Pryor, ConnCAN, AF and all the others in the incestuous tangle of groups attempting to ruin public education and make a boatload of money in the process.

    December 4, 2013
  2. Matt B. #

    Here is what the AEI stands for:

    Anti-union all the way. The group asking him questions is ConnCAN–also anti union. His response: “folks were spending a lot of money to try and defeat an organized effort at school reform.” While there was some financial support from the CEA, the main push back came from teachers working on their own to organize early on and make this an issue.

    I’m a big fan of irony, so I appreciate it when Malloy says to a lobbying institution which spent over $600,000 in support of SB 24 that there was “a lot of money” opposing his plan. The irony is richer when he says it at a lobbying forum like AEI. But I certainly wouldn’t whitewash his appearance.

    I understand the CEA’s desire to have a working relationship with the gov. But at what cost. He’s not good for the union but even more so, not good for education, teachers, and students. Please don’t be a Malloy apologist.

    December 4, 2013
  3. Linda #

    From another blog, do you post all comments:

    What is ironic is that the CEA blog is heavily monitored. When I attempted a post to their recent kind words for the Governor my post never made it past the moderator. What are my dues used for again?

    December 3, 2013
  4. Terry #

    Check out comments here CEA moderator. You are taking a beating:

    December 3, 2013
  5. Lou #

    I voted for Malloy last time, but I would vote for Jeb Bush before I would vote for him again. If we can’t get a better candidate than Malloy, then teachers along with the CEA & UFT will need to inflict some pain on the Democratic Party in order to re-establish power.

    December 3, 2013
  6. Simply concerned... #

    I truly want to leave a thoughtful comment, but I am nearly without words. Yes, somebody has to be the leader, but the current leader is leading us down a dark path. As Malloy stated I am scared…scared of how the ccss will destroy my class, and scared of his further actions destroying public education in this state.

    December 3, 2013
  7. John #

    I hope this story isn’t an early indicator that CEA will end up endorsing this man because he’s “better than terrible.” The story doesn’t even mention how ConnCAN tossed him a softball question during the Q&A session and he used it to complain about groups spending money to stop education reform. I hope CEA understands that he was talking about groups like CEA. The ultimate irony was that ConnCAN spent more money to jam these awful reforms through than any other organization. I sincerely hope CEA isn’t forgetting these things. This article tends to make it sound like Malloy wasn’t actually speaking at an ultra conservative event run by a group intent on busting unions…

    December 3, 2013
  8. Sue464 #

    Does anyone here ever read Jon Pelto? If not, they’d better start because most of the members are.

    December 3, 2013
  9. Curtiss #

    This blog post seems to support the governor. Huh?

    This governor, along with his commissioner of education (a lawyer who has very little educational experience) are pro-business and anti-education. They don’t want to fix education. They wish to funnel public money to private corporations that are in the education business. Education should not be for profit. It makes me sick.

    Wouldn’t it be nice if we had qualified people in charge who understand children as well as the purpose of education?

    My 7 year old daughter and my 9 year old son certainly don’t need to be “career and college ready” at this point in their lives. I want my children to like school and learning. I want my children to be curious and happy. I want my children to be good citizens. Isn’t that really the point of our public education?

    I don’t want my children worrying about a score on a test.

    I fear that this “reform” movement will push out a lot of great teachers who don’t wish to spend countless hours analyzing data. Endless test-prep will likely kill any love that children may have had for school. It is sad.

    We can all thank Walmart and the Bill and Melinda Gates foundation for all of this garbage. How will this insanity end?

    Where is the union? I know that the current situation is better than what was coming down the pike, but it still pretty horrible. The union needs to fight. It is as if it just rolled over.

    Hello? CEA? Are you there?

    December 3, 2013
  10. Please read the real story here. No self-respecting teacher would vote for this man.

    December 3, 2013
  11. Sleepless in Bridgeport #

    Shame on the CEA. When are you going show some guts as Malloy and Pryor dissect our very own organization. I am ashamed to be a member. Please retract your original blog and take another look at what Danny boy had to say. The first Democratic governor in how many years is making Jindal and Jeb Bush look like Horace Greeley. Djon’t you get it? The CEA is the “union” they want to destroy and you have given them the leverage to be well on their way.

    December 3, 2013
  12. CEA has made no endorsement in the 2014 race for governor. The CEA endorsement process gets underway in early 2014. Historically, a CEA-endorsed candidate is selected by spring of each election year.

    December 3, 2013
    • Terry #

      Endorse policies that benefit children, not people who use children and teachers for their own personal gain.

      December 3, 2013
  13. Terry #

    Don’t tell us you plan on endorsing this self-absorbed, lying, opportunistic, egotistical edushyster?

    December 2, 2013
  14. andrea #

    I cannot believe what I just read here. Does my union really support a teacher bashing union hating governor who is speaking at the American Enterprise Institute? Or have I somehow missed the irony? Please retract this blog. Or rewrite it with some passion.

    December 2, 2013

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