Support for Iowa Schools Plan Elusive

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

To successfully overhaul the state’s education system, Iowa needs champions in the Legislature and communities that are willing to push for sustained changes, some state leaders say.

But they question whether either of those ingredients for effective change exists, especially for reforms that could need a decade to take hold.

Several lawmakers say they largely agree that Iowa’s schools need a new direction. No one, however, has stepped forward to support Gov. Terry Branstad’s comprehensive blueprint for change, which was unveiled this month. They, instead, say they want more details, especially when it comes to cost.

Branstad’s plan lacked a price tag, which he said will come after the state reaches a consensus on the policies in the proposal. It also failed to lay out details regarding how the proposals would be implemented and how the state would measure their success.

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