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Gov. Brown uses State of the State speech to push education reforms

California Gov. Jerry Brown delivers his State of the State speech.
California Gov. Jerry Brown delivers his State of the State speech.
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Gov. Jerry Brown spent a big part of his state of the state speech Thursday pushing legislators to approve his overhaul of public education financing.

As if speaking from a pulpit, Brown warned of fire and brimstone if bureaucracy and inequity isn’t wiped clean from the state education system.

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“Nothing is more determinative of our future than how we teach our children," he told lawmakers. "If we fail at this, we will sow growing social chaos and inequality that no law can rectify.” 

He said to make up for years of budget cuts and to return the luster to California schools, legislators should approve his plan to give school districts more control over funds. He also wants to give more money to schools with a lot of struggling students.
“As the Irish poet William Butler Yeats said, education is not the filling of a pail, but the lighting of a fire,” Brown said in a speech heavily dotted with quotations and stories.

The California legislature will debate Brown’s proposal after he submits a revised budget in May.

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