CT News Junkie: Business Leaders Propose Their Own Education Reforms

By Christine Stuart

Published by CT News Junkie, January 26, 2012

A group of business leaders, who formed a non-profit to help eliminate Connecticut’s highest-in-the-nation achievement gap, said there are several steps the legislature can take this year to lower the gap over the next decade.

The Connecticut Council for Education Reform’s proposal is just one of a handful of education reform proposals put forth this year as the legislature prepares for a session focused on changes to the education system.

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CT Mirror–Malloy: More Money Needed for Education Reform

By Jacqueline Rabe Thomas

Gov. Dannel P. Malloy may have given an energizing pep talk on education reform to a roomful of education advocates and leaders Thursday, but it was the comments he made to reporters afterward that will likely receive the largest cheers from those who have long said the state is shortchanging education…

Dudley Williams, a member of the Connecticut Council for Education Reform, a business-backed reform group, and member of the school financing task force, responded…’I don’t think you can have a funding formula where there are going to be losers,’ he said.

Read the full article here.



Westfair Online: In Connecticut, Education Drives Economics

By John R. Rathgeber

Published by Westfair Online, January 25, 2012

To a significant degree, the quality of a state’s education system determines that state’s long-term economic success.

Students who graduate from high school prepared for the rigors of the modern workplace or college classroom become an indispensable resource for companies seeking to innovate and grow.

In addition, partnerships between a state’s higher-education institutions and businesses facilitate the commercialization of intellectual property, spurring economic development and job creation.

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Associated Press: Conn. to Seek No Child Waiver; Seeks Public Input

By Stephanie Reitz

Associated Press

HARTFORD, Conn.—Connecticut education officials have decided to seek a waiver from parts of the federal No Child Left Behind law, saying they need more flexibility to focus on improving student achievement and instruction in its public schools.

State officials said in a newly posted announcement on the Department of Education’s website that they plan to submit the request by Feb. 21.

Eleven states applied last fall for relief from some mandates of the Bush-era law to improve schools nationwide, and several other states have said they are preparing applications.

Connecticut Post: Education Advocates Pin High Hopes on Malloy for Reform

By Linda Conner Lambeck and Ken Dixon, Staff Writers

Published in Connecticut Post, January 4, 2012

In Dannel P. Malloy’s first year as governor, Connecticut struck out in its third bid at Race to the Top dollars. The state takeover of the failing Bridgeport school board is being legally challenged and is in the hands of the state Supreme Court. Connecticut’s standing on national and international benchmarks continues to slip.

About the only top slot the constitution state still clings to is “largest achievement gap in the nation.”

So educational reform advocates say much is riding on Malloy’s pledge that 2012 will be the year of education reform.

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CT Mirror: Education Reform Group Presents Proposals to State Board

By Caitlin Emma

A group of business and philanthropic leaders presented their education reform proposals to the state Board of Education Wednesday, pitching changes to teacher certification requirements, preparation programs and evaluations to help close Connecticut’s dramatic achievement gap…

‘We think next year could be the lynchpin,’ said Steve Simmons, vice chair of the council and CEO of Simmons/Patriot Media and Communications. ‘The governor has said that this first year was focused on the budget crisis and the second year was going to be education reform. I think we have a great chance here over this next nine or ten month period to really push for change.’

Read the rest of the article.




CT Post: New Education Commissioner Brings Optimism

By Linda Conner Lambeck, Staff writer

Published by CT Post, September 7, 2011

HARTFORD – All around the state, there are pockets of excellent schools, even in the poorest urban areas. The state’s next commissioner of education said he wants to use them as models and, in the process, erase the largest achievement gap in the nation.

“The question is not how a school is structured … whether it’s a charter school, magnet school or traditional … the question is whether the school is providing for outstanding student outcomes,” said Stefan Pryor, 39, the new education chief introduced Wednesday by Gov. Dannel P. Malloy.

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Hartford Courant: State’s New Education Leader Sets Out To Close Achievement Gap: Malloy said Stefan Pryor is an ‘Outside-the-Box’ Candidate With the ‘Collaborative Skills’ to Bring About Change

By Kathleen Megan

Published by Hartford Courant, September 7, 2011

Stefan Pryor had a chance to explain Wednesday how his unorthodox background will work for him as he takes on the state’s long-intractable achievement gap between rich and poor students.

Named Wednesday as Connecticut’s next education commissioner, Pryor was one of the founders of a charter school, Amistad Academy in New Haven, in the 1990s and has been involved in many education projects, including several years working on the reform of impoverished schools in Brooklyn, N.Y.

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CT News Junkie: New Schools Chief Sees ‘Mandate for Change’

By Christine Stuart And Hugh McQuaid

Published by CT News Junkie, September 7, 2011

Many of Gov. Dannel P. Malloy’s executive appointments have been considered nontraditional. His final pick for the head of the Department of Education was no different.

Malloy tapped Stefan Pryor, the Deputy Mayor of Economic Development for Newark, New Jersey. Pryor doesn‘t have a doctorate in education or classroom teaching experience, but Malloy said his skill set, experience, and work ethic fit nicely into his “sweet spot.”

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