Contacts by cell: Mike Myslinski at 408-921-5769 or Sandra Jackson, 916-801-4776
LOS ANGELES — Calling for more proven, teacher-supported reforms for our public schools, Democratic gubernatorial candidate Jerry Brown today told 800 educators from across California he would “mobilize the people of this state” behind public education to achieve a better future for all.
“Look, we’re facing big changes, and people who haven’t been around always want to reinvent the wheel with yesterday’s tried and failed programs,” Brown said of state and federal obsessions with standardized testing and other so-called reforms. “We don’t make progress by dividing. We make progress by uniting.”
Drawing enthusiastic applause, he said teachers should be trusted to know what works in our classrooms – and need proven reforms like more time for colleagues to share ideas. He called for one united California to protect the middle class and to end political gridlock. Society needs more “thinking as Californians first, and members of the Democratic party second, and the Republican party,” Brown said. “When we invest in our people and in our schools, when we pull together, then we know that we don’t just defend the land of our fathers – we defend and protect the land of our children. That’s the future, that’s our future, and together we’re going to take back California.”
Brown spoke at the quarterly meeting at a downtown Los Angeles hotel of the CTA State Council of Education, whose 800 democratically elected delegates represent the union’s 325,000 teachers, counselors, librarians, school nurses and education support professionals.
David A. Sanchez, president of the California Teachers Association, introduced Brown today by reminding delegates that the current state attorney general “knows that California’s future depends on a world-class, quality public school system. He believes that the best education reform happens when there is collaboration among teachers, administrators and parents.”
Sanchez also praised teachers this weekend for leading the primary election fight victory for CTA-backed Assembly member Tom Torlakson, D-Antioch, in the critical race for state superintendent of public instruction. Torlakson emerged from a crowded field to join former Bay Area school district superintendent Larry Aceves in a November runoff. The CTA Council endorsed Jerry Brown earlier this year, along with other candidates. CTA delegates this weekend completed all endorsements for state constitutional offices: Jerry Brown, governor; Gavin Newsom, lieutenant governor; Kamala Harris, attorney general; Dave Jones, insurance commissioner; Debra Bowen, secretary of state; John Chiang, state controller; Bill Lockyer, state treasurer. For complete CTA candidate recommendations, go to www.cta.org.
The 325,000-member CTA is affiliated with the 3.2 million-member National Education Association.