Are you wondering who to vote for in the democratic primary or the upcoming gubernatorial election? As always, there are a myriad of issues to consider, of which education ought to be one of the most important. Here is a brief overview of the educational goals and plans of each of the major candidates as stated on their websites or in interviews with the media.
Phil Angelides promises to roll back state university fee increases enacted duringSchwarzenegger’s term and to make up the difference in funds by increasing taxes for families that earn upwards of $500,000 a year and by reducing tax breaks for large corporations; in addition, he plans to increase the number of grants available to college-bound students. Angelides is also focusing on improving elementary and secondary education by attracting more and better teachers with more grants, and home ownership help.
Schwarzenegger’s educational plan includes support for charter schools, local initiatives, standards and accountability. He believes that schools need more than just money, though his new budget will increase school spending to $67 billion (about $11,300 per student). The governor also emphasizes the importance of after-school programs.
Steve Westly actively supports a ballot measure to increase income tax for those who make over $400,000 a year in order to provide no-cost preschool statewide. He supports local control of schools and wants to give teachers more control of their classrooms. Westly wants to attract better educated and more qualified teachers to low-income area schools by first luring better administrators there. Westly also promises to provide free community college for all interested Californians.