Tony Bennett, Indiana Superintendent of
(Indianapolis, Ind.) – Indiana has become a national leader in education reform, the state’s top education official said Tuesday.
State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Bennett delivered his 2011 State of Education address at Indianapolis Manual High School.
“The landscape of Indiana schools is now one that embraces freedom, competition, and accountability,” said Bennett.
He went on to tout various new state laws furthering his reform agenda - limiting union power, revamping teacher evaluations, and expanding charter schools.
Bennett also praised the state's new school voucher system and called for continued efforts to improve the program.
“Simply having more options isn’t enough. Those choices must be of the highest quality for our children,” Bennett said.
He asked state lawmakers for new reforms next year. He would like to see schools receive letter grades to denote their performance and allow the Department of Education to more quickly take control of failing schools.
By increasing the number of enrollment counts during the year, funding could be distributed to districts more fairly when students transfer mid-year. Currently, enrollment counts are performed once a year in September.
Bennett also outlined a proposal to require high school students to take at least one online class before they can graduate.