ANDERSON, Ind. (AP) - Glenda Ritz says she’s dismayed by the tasks she faces
succeeding Tony Bennett as Indiana’s superintendent of public instruction.
Ritz told about 200 supporters that not only must she overhaul some of the
changes Bennett made during four years in office and implement her own
program, but now she must also deal with the investigation into Bennett’s
manipulation of school grades, The Herald Bulletin reported Sunday.
The Associated Press has published emails showing Bennett and his staff
changed the school grading formula to raise the score of a campaign donor’s
charter school from a C to an A. School grades are used to determine how
much money schools get and whether “failing” schools are taken over by
Bennett has denied any wrongdoing, but he resigned as Florida’s education
commissioner, a post he was appointed to after Ritz defeated his re-election
bid in Indiana last year.
The A-F school grading scale is one of the Bennett reforms Ritz spoke most
sharply about changing during an open house Saturday at United Auto Workers
“I want an assessment model with no ceiling so we can truly understand where
our students stand,” the superintendent said. “I want a strong system of
equity and high quality for every student, and a big part of that is a
strong system of public education.”
Ritz also announced the creation of an outreach program for public schools
around the state modeled after her own grassroots-oriented superintendent
election campaign. The program will feature 14 outreach education service
centers around the state organized by leading educators in each area.