EXCLUSIVE — Dr. Ben Carson Unveils Education Plan, Promotes School Choice, Parents and Teachers

Republican presidential candidate Dr. Ben Carson walks through the National Motorcycle Museum in Anamosa, Iowa, Thursday, Jan. 7, 2016, after holding a town hall.
AP Photo/Patrick Semansky

GOP presidential candidate Dr. Ben Carson is unveiling his plan to fix the education system in America.

“To be successful, we must take the federal bureaucracy out of education and concentrate on empowering the American people,” Carson pledges. “This is the only way that ‘We the People’ can have the kind of nation that was envisioned by our founders.”

Carson points out that: “2015 Math and Reading National Assessment of Educational Progress scores showed a continuation of the achievement gap between white and minority students, even after the implementation of Common Core Standards in 42 states and the District of Columbia.”

He says America must make a change to prepare children for the challenges of the 21st century.

Carson’s plan includes “five principles to restore American exceptionalism in our schools:”

  • School Choice
    • “I will actively support school choice programs, such as school vouchers and charter schools, so every student has the opportunity to fully realize his or her God-given potential.”
  • Empower Parents, Teachers, Local School Districts and the States – Not Washington
    • “In education, as in so many endeavors, the best decisions are the ones made by those closest to the issue. I will work to directly support students, cut red tape and reduce the size and authority of the Washington educational bureaucracy.”
  • Encourage Innovation
    • “Everywhere I travel, I am inspired by the creativity of educators whose ideas offer real promise for tomorrow’s students. Rather than micromanaging these educational innovators with onesize- fits-all regulations that suppress their ingenuity, we should promote innovative ideas in education.”
  • Reward Good Teachers
    • “It is long past the time to give teachers the respect and the resources they deserve. Instead of an outdated system that rewards teacher tenure over performance, I will advocate for flexible block grants to the states to advance and reward teacher quality, and to develop teacher evaluation systems that focus on effectiveness in advancing student achievement.”
  • A Simpler, Streamlined Student Loan Process
    • “The Department of Education needs to get out of the lending business. We need a simpler, more streamlined and transparent financial aid process that gives students and their families the kind of simple, reliable information they need to make good decisions.”

“We owe it to our children – and to ourselves – to restore our education system to global preeminence, and I believe this common sense, conservative, principled approach will enable us to do so,” Carson concludes.


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