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April 19, 2015

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Education reform crucial for Nevada to compete in global marketplace, Sandoval says

Updated Friday, Dec. 7, 2012 | 5:05 p.m.

Gov. Brian Sandoval said there’s still work to be done, but “the road is getting a bit easier” in transforming the state’s economic development policy.

In a 30-minute address to about 700 people attending the Nevada Development Authority’s annual meeting, Sandoval said there are challenges ahead in funding education, which he said is critical in achieving the state’s economic development mission.

“Nevada now competes in a global marketplace,” Sandoval said. “Our children and our grandchildren must be able to compete globally so we must think about the future of our schools, our colleges, our universities and all our training programs. They have to change to meet the conditions of the new normal and the brave new world of tomorrow.”

Sandoval recognized the improvement of the Clark County School District’s top performing schools and credited Superintendent Dwight Jones as “a warrior for improving schools in Nevada.”

“I’m sure that Dr. Jones would agree that our work’s not yet done,” he said.

Sandoval said he is working with Jim Guthrie, Nevada’s new superintendent of public instruction, on the next phase of education reform for the state that will be debated in the 2013 legislative session.

The governor also recognized Chancellor Dan Klaich, who is an ex-officio member of the Governor’s Office of Economic Development board of directors, and UNLV President Neal Smatresk.

“Both the president and the chancellor have been there every step of the way,” Sandoval said. “(Klaich) is at every meeting and takes every phone call and does everything that he can possibly do to make Nevada a better state.”

Sandoval said Guthrie, Klaich, Smatresk and Frank Woodbeck, director of the Department of Employment, Training and Rehabilitation, would “strengthen the links between the world of education policy and the world of economic development.”

One area that Sandoval said his education advisers are addressing is expanding information technology curriculum and certification development at schools so that skilled workers would be available to fill jobs anticipated with the recruitment and expansion of tech companies in the state.

“I’ve received a lot of feedback that Nevada is not producing enough IT industry professionals and the demand is only growing,” Sandoval said. “But we’re on the move in every part of Nevada on multiple policy fronts. We continue to have high hopes and high expectations.”

He said that progress in developing new policies is making the journey easier, but he acknowledged that challenges remain.

Friday’s meeting, at the Bellagio, also was the first appearance of Tom Skancke as the new chief executive of the NDA. Skancke, a longtime transportation consultant in Southern Nevada, was appointed to the post in October.

Skancke pledged to reshape Southern Nevada as a business destination as well as a tourist destination.

Prior to the meeting, Sandoval met with representatives of 35 companies that have moved to or expanded in Southern Nevada in the 2012 fiscal year. Those 35 companies have provided 2,126 primary and secondary jobs and produce an economic impact of more than $393 million in a year.

There are 28 companies new to the area with 1,379 jobs with an average wage of $21.91 an hour. Seven companies expanded in the area, adding 747 jobs with average pay of $20.60 an hour.

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  1. The State of Nevada has cheated several generations of our students out of a decent education by grossly underfunding our schools. Nevada has not achieved economic diversification because there was not an educated workforce to employ doing anything else other than cleaning hotel rooms, serving tables and parking cars. Sandoval has had economic development team and State program with $10 Million for 2 years not creating 1 job. Today he wakes up and amazingly realizes that there might, might be, a relationship between EDUCATION and ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT. Dah!

  2. If we want to reform education we have to reform what goes on in the class room. What we teach and how we teach it is what matters. Throwing money at the problem won't do a darn thing unless it's related to necessary materials and most aren't absolutely necessary by themselves.

    Proper teacher evaluations to support effective curriculum and presentations in middle and high school matter more than most.

    The last thing that needs to be taken into account is the teachers union which cares not about student achievement but about how it can line its coffers.

  3. Just wondering HOW INVOLVED some Commenters are in the political process that we are going through in this state?I have attended meeting regarding the State and Nevada Educators coming together to discuss their concerns and interests, and please permit me to say that those in the classroom trenches are extremely vocal about the needs of their students. Also keep in mind, these new, state-wide mandated evaluations, include ADMINISTRATORS, along with teachers. Administrators dictate what is going on in the classroom.

    Tanker1975 commented: @Brass. Would that be the teacher's union that refused to sign off on a Federal Grant application which was unilaterally prepared by CCSD? The application that would affect 63 schools and only hired 24 teachers and 22 aides? The application that granted approximately 39 MILLION to a company in Colorado to provide programs and services without competative bidding? The application that didn't allow teacher input into how the grant funds would be used at a specific school?

    Would that be the teachers union that forced CCSD to agree to have councils, which would include teachers, at each impacted school to decide how best to use the funds to help students? Would that be the teachers union that forced the removal of the designed company from Colorado and would put the program and services out to competative bidding? Would that be the teachers union that forced CCSD to create a district wide council to try to prevent this type of problem from occuring again? Would that be the teachers union which would have gotten an addition $18,000 in dues assuming that all new teachers hired by this grant would have joined the union. Yes, $18,000 really lines their coffers since the teachers union already collects over $4,000,000 in dues from members.

    Is that the greedy teachers union that doesn't care about student achievement that you're talking about?

    Just as a point of information, the curriculum that is taught is proscribed by the State Department of Education and by CCSD, not the individual teacher. In fact, CCSD has "common assessment" in certain subjects to insure that the CCSD and State curriculum is taught. A teacher is required to use these exams as a final exam. What is a "proper teacher evaluation"?

    There you have it.
    Blessings and Peace,

  4. Sorry, I forgot to quote Tanker1975, my before morning coffee apologies. If you wish to ascertain Tanker1975's comment, just click "See all comments" so you can differientate. Thanks.

    Blessing and Peace,

  5. Star, you know as well as I do that these commenters are taking their talking points from partisan ideological sources and not from what research tells us works.

    Sadly, the ONLY "links between the world of education policy and the world of economic development," that he is currently pushing legislative bill drafts for only succeeds in privatization of schools. He and Guthrie are continuing to push the education policies of Michelle Rhee & Jeb Bush. Policies that put profits into the pockets of education corporations at the cost of students. The newly elected state board of education members, like Allison Serafin, have already been flown across the country to meet with Jeb Bush to discuss how to force For-Profit Charter schools, that have been proven to reduce student success in poor neighborhoods, on Nevada's poor neighborhoods.

  6. Too few within the public are really, truly, interested in what is going on with their neighborhood, local, county, state, and national policies in education, which not only affects those presently in the system, but those who will be in the system in the future. Let me say, there are plenty of behind the scenes deals going on, contrary to open meeting laws and transparency in government. Your voice gives you power-more concerted the public voices, the more those who are in high places will listen and make some attempt towards doing what those voices call for.

    It is troubling to either hear or know of some of the UNdisclosed and UNpublicized relationships in educational politics. Some believe Charter Schools are a cure-all for everything that ails our public school system. It has its place. Our system would do MUCH BETTER utilizing current facilities and creating MORE Magnet Schools, which are career-oriented specific and motivating for our students. But some find it more lucrative and profitable for themselves to push Charter Schools, even when Charter Schools have nearly as many failures as they do successes. Follow the money trail folks.

    We live in a world where one size education, like shoes, does not fit all. We need to do our best to provide options for those who need a specific option.

    Here in the USA, it is the billionaires that are really influencing educational policy. They are about profit and looking good. They have a financial interest in education. Least we forget.

    Blessings and Peace,

  7. Step 1: Insist teachers comprehend and consider that indoctrinating students into lock-step rhetoric is not "education." Step 2: Parents and the public need to consider and reconsider. Throwing money at K-12 hasn't helped. Nevada funds K-12 at about 25th in the nation yet gets 51st results. So, duh, it's not about money except that we're overpaying teachers and administrators and we're overbuilding new school buildings. CCSD is LOSING STUDENT POPULATION yet they keep building.

  8. For Commenter Chuck333, let's ask why children cannot READ first, nor count second, for that matter. It all starts with the PARENTS, who are their child's first and lifelong teacher, not the CCSD, nor the union(s). From a teacher's perspective, if children are taught a concept, have practiced it under supervision in their classroom, then return home to do nothing more than watch television, text message, and play video games, how can they improve?

    During the last Nevada State Legislative Session, Lawmakers passed laws regarding parent, student, teacher participation in education with the PARENT, TEACHER, STUDENT INVOLVEMENT ACCORD (CCSD uses this at taxpayer expense for years). Every year, all parties meet during the yearly required Parent/Teacher Conference and also discuss and sign this document.

    The major problem is that our Lawmaker put NO ENforcement teeth in this mandated accord, so there are virtually zero consequences for parents or students, but teachers are held accountable. That is pretty unfair and lop-sided. Maybe this coming session, ENforcement teeth will be effectively written into law, so we are not throwing good taxpayer money after a near useless document.

    Basics need to be mastered in order for students to move forward in the curriculum. Children in Title 1 Schools, typically live in poverty and/or dysfunctional homes, and have gaps all over the place in their education, and educators do their level best to address these gaps when such students are present at school. Afterschool tutoring is also available as well, but it always seems to be a game of "catch up" for many, if not most, of these children.

    This school year, the CCSD had given Title 1 status to a huge number of schools. That has to speak volumes about where Lawmakers need to address: the untouchable subject-the child's home, family, and parent for accountability.

    Blessings and Peace,