A group of government and education leaders is celebrating education today at the Indiana Statehouse. The Quality Education Celebration is designed to mark progress in standardized test scores, graduation rates and student reading levels.

February 12, 2014

News Release

Indianapolis, Ind. — Legislative leaders will join students, parents, teachers and administrators from across Indiana today to participate in the inaugural Quality Education Celebration at the Indiana Statehouse. The Celebration is a collaborative effort designed to highlight what??s working in education, while calling for even more quality options.

“Access to a quality education is critical to all Hoosiers and to the success of our great state,” said Indiana Senate Pro Tem David Long. “Students and parents have more high-quality options than they??ve had in the past, and that??s important to celebrate. But, we also must do more to help all schools perform better. Let's acknowledge the progress we're making, and let??s keep working to do even better for the students who are depending on us.”

More Hoosier students are passing the ISTEP+ exam, participating in Advanced Placement (AP) courses, graduating from high school, and reading on grade level by grade three than ever before. The Quality Education Celebration celebrates those gains, while giving legislators the chance to meet with the students, parents, teachers and administrators who benefit from the education policies they??ve championed.

“We've been making progress across Indiana by focusing on our core belief that all parents, regardless of income or ZIP code, deserve to decide what school best serves their child??s needs,” said Indiana Speaker Brian Bosma. “But, we must continue to improve, and that means focusing squarely on what students, parents and teachers in every school need to be successful.”

The Quality Education Celebration provides a forum for Hoosiers to voice their support for a more competitive educational environment, particularly in K-12 schooling, where all students have the opportunity to succeed. Quality education policies are those that create and maintain:

?? Fair and transparent accountability metrics for schools

?? Meaningful teacher evaluations

?? A vibrant, diverse variety of school models

?? Equitable funding for all schools

?? Strong college and career standards

Several champions of education quality organized the Celebration, including: Agudath Israel of America, American Federation for Children, Association of American Educators, Charter Schools USA, The Educational CHOICE Charitable Trust, The Friedman Foundation for Educational Choice, Public School Options.org, Hoosiers for Economic Growth and School Choice Indiana.

“Whether public or private, charter, virtual or homeschooled, this Quality Education Celebration is about acknowledging the various ways Hoosier students are receiving the education they need to succeed,” said Betsy Wiley, President and CEO of Hoosiers for Economic Growth. “Parents and students have options today, but we need to do even more to foster a competitive environment that prioritizes student achievement over protecting the status quo.”

In addition to meeting with their state legislators, students participating in the Celebration (including fourth graders studying Indiana history and high school government classes) will have a chance to tour the Statehouse and learn about the legislative process. The Quality Education Celebration also marks the 205th birthday of Abraham Lincoln, and a local Lincoln impersonator will be present to answer questions about the President, his ties to Indiana history, and Black History Month.

“It's only appropriate that we celebrate Indiana's successes in education reform on the same day that we remember the legacy of Abraham Lincoln ?C one of equity and opportunity for all. A quality education is the greatest equalizer, and Indiana is delivering on that promise,” Wiley said.

About Hoosiers for Economic Growth: Hoosiers for Economic Growth (HEG) is a non-profit organization committed to ensuring all Hoosier children have quality educational opportunities. HEG is the parent organization to the following groups: School Choice Indiana, The Educational CHOICE Charitable Trust, and the Hoosiers for Economic Growth Political Action Committee. For more information, go to http://hegnetwork.com.

Source: Hoosiers For Economic Growth

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