MSNBC is featuring a three-minute video of Gov. Phil Bredesen this week as part of its Education Nation summit, a program exploring how the country can improve teaching and learning.
Bredesen detailed the significance of the $500 million Race to the Top grant Tennessee won earlier this year and explained what it took to get teachers, politicians and unions to support reforming the system.
“Where the jobs are going to come in the future, it’s not about where the rivers come together and the railroads cross any more. It’s where the human capital is that it takes to make those investments successful. And if we want to continue to grow and compete in the decades, we’re going to have to make sure we have that human capital, the young people here, who can do that,” he said.
Bredesen adds that all candidates for governor vowed to support the program, giving Bredesen “considerable confidence” whoever replaces him when he is termed out in January will drive the grants’ initiatives forward.
American students rated 25th in math and 21st in science out of 30 other industrialized countries, according to MSNBC. Meanwhile, 68 percent of 8th-graders can’t read at their grade level and most college students take more than four years to finish their degrees.
Bredesen also sat in on a panel entitled “Kids Can’t Vote: How Can the Politics of Education Put Children First,” but the session has not yet aired on MSNBC’s live stream.