In the homestretch of the gubernatorial campaign Democratic and Republican candidates are focusing on education. With just over a month to go in the campaign Republican Tom Emmer released his second television ad. It’s called “Reform” in it Emmer says “I’ll protect our investment in education by making sure that more money goes to classrooms” but his Democratic opponent Mark Dayton asserts Emmer’s buget cuts education. Emmer has said he’ll hold education harmless.
Emmer Campaign Manager Cullen Sheehan said “Tom is committed to reforming education, facilitating innovation and improving educational outcomes. He knows our children deserve to be fully prepared with the knowledge and skills to create their own bright futures, and we must give them every opportunity to succeed.” The ad also notes that Emmer is the father of public school children. Emmer who grew up in Edina went to private school at St. Thomas Academy.
The previous day, Dayton released his education plan claiming Republican Gov. Tim Pawlenty cut education. Dayton said ” the last eight years schools have seen a $1300 decrease in real, per-pupil funding” but Pawlenty maintains he did not cut money for kids in the classrooms. Dayton’s TV ads that have been running for months show him in a classroom. Like Emmer, Dayton went to private school. He was “head boy” at Blake.
His plan released in a St. Paul school calls for all-day kindergarten to every school, providing early childhood opportunities to every kid in Minnesota and smaller class-sizes. Dayton said “If every Minnesota school had all-day kindergarten, early childhood family education programs, great teachers and effective public-private partnerships there would be no achievement gap and our state would be creating the businesses of the future. There is no better job creator than a great education, and as governor I will work to make sure that every child in Minnesota receives one.”