Friday, June 13, 2008

Meddling Horne should help public schools or quit

Adam Perez greets Tom Horne outside TUSD HQ downtown

TUCSON -- People in Pima County have had it with State Superintendent of Education Tom Horne meddling in local school decisions.

Yesterday, my wife and I, and many others, attended a press conference by TUSD and supporters in favor of the very successful and popular ethnic studies program. Several prominent community leaders, including Chairman of the Pima County Supervisors Richard Elias, talked about the useful and positive nature of the program, which I support.

Outgoing TUSD Superintendent Roger Pfeuffer said about Horne's attacks, "This is the behavior of a politician, not an educator. He espouses research-based practices but he ignores the evidence we've shown him about Ethnic Studies."

Tom Horne

After the positive local event, Horne has his own xenophobic press conference outside under a tree. He wants to abolish ethnic studies statewide, which is far outside his purview or authority. Horne ended up looking and sounding very out of touch.

"His behavior is unprofessional and he's abusing the authority of his office. He's inserting a personal, political agenda into a public school district," said Pfeuffer.

I agree Tom Horne needs a hug. He needs to stay out of Tucson and local public school decisions. Horne must focus on improving support for teachers and public schools in Arizona. If he won't do these two things, Horne should resign.

I support our teachers. When I'm in the State House, with your support and vote, I will work cooperatively to protect local control and keep Horne out of local schools business.

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