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No extra academic oversight (veto)

Published (5/25/2012)
By Mike Cook
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Gov. Mark Dayton vetoed a plan that would have required legislative approval to any changes or revisions to the academic standards or graduation requirements after they’ve gone into rulemaking.

Sponsored by Rep. Sondra Erickson (R-Princeton) and Sen. Carla Nelson (R-Rochester), the bill would have allowed the education commissioner to review and revise school standards and benchmarks, but would have required specific legislation to authorize those revisions as official rules.

“Minnesota’s existing standards review and revision process is carefully designed and thorough. It has successfully produced rigorous academic standards in math, science, English, language arts, social studies, and the arts,” Dayton wrote in his veto letter. “Even when issues of a controversial nature emerge in specific subject areas, the current process has produced standards which have been widely accepted by stakeholders and held in high esteem nationally. This bill would delay the academic standards process by inserting it into the legislative arena.”

In addition to assigning a role of the executive branch to the legislative branch, the governor also expressed concern about finding people to serve on a standards committee. He said this process would create ambiguity because the Legislature could change standards a committee worked hard to create, and there could be potential delays in implementation timelines causing loss of federal dollars that would put additional costs on local districts.

“Adding an additional review process could considerably lengthen the amount of time it would take to develop the standards, which in turn would make it difficult for districts to align, purchase, or create new curriculum to train their teachers and to implement the standards,” Dayton wrote.

HF1847/ SF1656*/CH281

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