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Secretary Spellings Meets with Business Leaders, Students, and Teachers in Minnesota to Highlight Education Priorities


Prior Lake, Minn. — U.S. Secretary of Education Margaret Spellings continued the national dialogue on No Child Left Behind (NCLB) reauthorization today in Minnesota, where she joined U.S. Rep. John Kline (MN-02) to speak to local business leaders, students, teachers, and school officials. Secretary Spellings and Congressman Kline kicked off the day by meeting with members of the Minnesota business community, and then visited a local school to discuss how NCLB is working for Minnesota’s students.

“Minnesota business leaders understand to keep pace with the global knowledge economy, we must demand more for our children from our education system,” Spellings remarked to business leaders at an event hosted by the Burnsville Chamber of Commerce today. “With NCLB, we laid the foundation for improvement. For the first time in education, we’re now using data to target time, personnel, and resources where they’re needed, as other industries have done for years.”

Secretary Spellings was joined by Congressman Kline to discuss the role that business leaders play in supporting education and preparing students for the 21st century workforce.

“Today’s employers rely on highly-skilled workers,” Kline said. “We need to provide our students - tomorrow’s workforce - with every opportunity for exceptional math and science education in order for our businesses to remain innovative and competitive.”

Following the Chamber event, Secretary Spellings and Congressman Kline visited Grainwood Elementary School, where they toured classrooms and delivered remarks to a school assembly. Secretary Spellings highlighted National Volunteer Month, and presented second grader Alex Sandler with the President’s Volunteer Service Award for his and his family’s efforts to help needy and hungry children in Minneapolis and around the world.

Minnesota is the birthplace of charter schools. In 1991, Minnesota was the first state to inject competition into the education system and enable parents to choose the best school for their child. Today, 13 percent of Minneapolis students, and 10 percent of St. Paul students, attend charter schools.

Minnesota is also the home of the Q-Comp program, created by Governor Pawlenty and Education Commissioner Alice Seagren in 2005 to support professional development for teachers and reward them for great work. Since then, 35 districts have joined the program. Bringing the most highly qualified and experienced teachers to the most challenging educational settings is a major priority of President Bush. The President’s budget includes nearly $200 million to encourage great teachers to work in high-poverty schools and reward them for results.

To see all of the President’s proposals for the reauthorization of No Child Left Behind, please visit:

A fact sheet is available at:


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