President Obama must be really scared of Texas Gov. Rick Perry — given that it is more than a year before the election and Perry isn’t even the Republican nominee. Why else would the White House be just making stuff up about him?
Consider Education Secretary Arne Duncan’s claims against Texas schools.
According to Duncan, Texas’ school system has “really struggled” during the 12 years that Perry has been in office.
“Far too few of their high-school graduates are actually prepared to go on to college,” Duncan told Bloomberg’s Al Hunt. “I feel very, very badly for the children there.”
As education policy expert Andrew Rotherham pointed out to Duncan in a previously scheduled interview, Texas is basically average when it comes to test scores and graduation rates.
“Texas students scored right around the national averages in reading and math on the National Assessment of Educational Progress,” he wrote online.
“And according to an Aug. 17 report by the group that administers the ACT college-admissions exam, Texas high-school graduates only narrowly trail national averages for college readiness,” he found.
“True, the national averages aren’t great, but Texas is right there with the pack.”
Duncan had no real response to the facts.
“I would have to look at all the details, but there are real challenges in Texas,” he said. “And like every other state, they should be addressed openly and honestly as in Illinois, as in Chicago, and everywhere else.”
Does Duncan really want to put up Illinois against Texas in terms of schools (or taxes, or business climate or anything else for that matter)?
Minority students do better in Texas than in Chicago, says Rotherham — who also points out, “Chicago only graduates about 56 percent of all its students.”
Now, in fairness, Duncan probably didn’t like Perry even before the presidency came into play, since Texas was one of the few states that told Team Obama it can keep its “Race to the Top” education money.
But slinging campaign mud for his boss — and doing a really bad job of it — is beneath the education secretary’s dignity.
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Source: New York Post NYPOST.com