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Education NewsTracker

Big Apple-Bound Again

Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam will do double duty in New York early this week, working on job creation while also appearing at the NBC event called the Education Nation Summit.

Economic and Community Development Commissioner Bill Hagerty and a small team from ECD will be along for the trip in an effort much like the jobs trek the governor made to California in early September.

“We’ve asked our ECD folks — Commissioner Hagerty and others — to put together three or four different groups of both site selection people and some existing businesses, so again we can continue to sell Tennessee,” Haslam said.

Hagerty said the New York trip will run Monday-Wednesday. Haslam is scheduled to appear at a Tennessee Downtown Partnership event Wednesday in Nashville at noon. First Lady Crissy Haslam is scheduled to join her husband at the education summit.

The NBC education event kicks off with a teachers’ town hall on Sunday and concludes with a session with former President Bill Clinton on Tuesday. Haslam said he would be part of two panels at the summit, one on K-12 education and another on completing college.

Hagerty said the Tennessee contingent got a positive reception when it traveled to California and that the group will meet in New York with companies that have private equity investments in Tennessee as well as companies that have not made investments in the state yet.

Haslam and Hagerty have repeatedly said the state is interested in growing businesses that already exist in the state as well as those they would like to attract to Tennessee.

The education summit is expected to include governors Lincoln Chafee of Rhode Island; Nathan Deal of Georgia; Mary Fallin of Oklahoma; John Hickenlooper of Colorado; Paul LePage of Maine; Jack Markell of Delaware; Bob McDonnell of Virginia; Sean Parnell of Arkansas; and Scott Walker of Wisconsin.

Haslam is expected on Monday to participate in a discussion called “The State of Education: The Governor’s Perspective.” That session is expected to cover a variety of educational issues and include questions from teachers, principals, parents and students.

Haslam was invited to introduce President Barack Obama last Friday at the White House for the president’s announcement of a new approach to the federal No Child Left Behind Law. Obama is scheduled to give his third annual “Back To School” speech on Wednesday at a high school in Washington.

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Press Releases

Haslam to Sit on Federal Education Study Group

Press Release from Gov. Bill Haslam; March 17, 2011:

Tennessee, Colorado to Lead Way in Regulation, Assessment Evaluation

NASHVILLE – Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam will join Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper and U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan in serving on a bi-partisan, federal study group co-chaired by U.S. Sens. Lamar Alexander (R-TN) and Michael Bennett (D-CO). The group’s mission is to review the effectiveness of education regulations and assessment evaluations in Tennessee and Colorado.

“We are already at the center of historic education reform, and this effort will keep Tennessee at the forefront of the national discussion,” said Haslam. “This is one more way that we can focus on education as a state and ensure we’re making children in Tennessee classrooms our top priority.

“Senator Alexander has devoted his career to improving education in Tennessee and around the country, and I look forward to working with him and the other distinguished members of this working group.”

Alexander and Bennett announced the study group as part of a bipartisan bill they introduced today aimed at cutting red tape and improving schools. The bill calls for a long term, national task force that will examine federal, state and local regulations as well as testing and assessment systems that govern public schools.

The Colorado-Tennessee Working Group will begin immediately to address these issues as first steps in the broader task force’s charge.

Bennet, former superintendent of the Denver Public Schools, and Alexander, former Education Secretary, are members of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee and are part of the committee’s negotiating team crafting a bill to reform No Child Left Behind.