W. Virginia plans reforms in light of bleak statistics


Dive Summary:

  • Hoping to combat disheartening statistics that cast a poor light on the state's education system, West Virginia's legislature is planning reforms in the coming session and looking to Delegates Linda Sumner, R-Raleigh, and Dave Perry, D-Fayette, for ideas.
  • One point that Sumner and Perry--both veteran legislators and retired middle school educators--agree on is a recommendation from Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin's recent state education audit calling for more authority to be shifted from the state Board of Education to local boards.
  • Aside from feeling that a one-size-fits-all program doesn't work for 55 counties with a variety of needs, the delegates' recommendations also include limiting class sizes to no more than 25 students, putting a stronger emphasis on vocational education, letting counties set the number of days in the school year based on "instructional minutes" and how to best address truancy.

From the article:

CHARLESTON — Depressing statistics that put West Virginia’s education system in a bad light call for reforms in the coming session, and two veteran legislators well experienced in teaching certainly have no dearth of ideas how to make progress. One driving force is the recent audit Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin ordered to find just where the state’s education community stands. ...

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