As Kim Reynolds is sworn in as governor of Iowa, it is important to examine her record on the issues of public education in our state.
In 2011, her administration made grand promises about “world-class schools for Iowa” that would build on the strengths of the Iowa education system. Unfortunately, that “vision” was nothing more than smoke and mirrors.
As a partner in the governor’s office, Reynolds has jeopardized Iowa’s tradition of providing accessible educational opportunities to all Iowans. Because she supported a state budget that did not adequately fund education, vital reading programs have been scrapped and class sizes are increasing in our K-12 classrooms. Additionally, she has been complicit in giving tax cuts to corporations at the expense of our community colleges and universities. Tuition hikes are expected, making access to higher education more difficult for many Iowans.
Reynolds also has favored actions which will weaken K-12 public schools, such as eliminating all accountability for home school programs and favoring the creation of Educational Savings Accounts, which provide generous tax credits to a few at the expense of public education funding. Iowa has a long and proud tradition of providing a quality education. Because Reynolds has failed to provide leadership, that proud tradition is in danger.