My day featured one former Iowa high school teacher versus another former Iowa high school teacher. Oh, and one happens to be the governor. The other wants to be governor. It is Governor Chet Culver versus Republican Bob Vander Plaats when it comes to funding education.
Culver defended his decision to order 10% cuts for state departments, including education. Vander Plaats contends that was the lazy way out. He thinks Culver should have cut elsewhere and protected education. Culver told me this, "We stood up and made the tough decisions and that was what was required. We've dealt with it. It's behind us. We're now on a pathway to grow on economy."
Culver added he expects lawmakers to find more money for education before they adjourn this session.
Vander Plants countered by saying he predicted districts would have to lay off teachers and raise property taxes because of Culver's decision last year. He said, "This isn't me talking now in March as these cuts are taking place. We warned him back in June. You have a problem. And you need to call a special session. And you need to be a leader here today and start determining priorities."
A history lesson here...Culver used to teach at Hoover High School in Des Moines. Vander Plaats taught at Boone High School. Vander Plaats mentioned he got pink-slipped after his first year of teaching because of budget cuts. But the district ended up finding the money for him for his second year.
All of this dreary weather the past few days( and worries of major flooding after our horrendous winter) has us all thinking of brighter days ahead. Here's something that helps, at least for me:)
This is courtesy of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch covering the Cardinals in Jupiter, Florida.