Home » Elections, General » Penny Kotterman – Candidate Arizona Superintendent of Public Instruction – Democrat (Primary)

Penny Kotterman – Candidate Arizona Superintendent of Public Instruction – Democrat (Primary)

SEDONA AZ–“I believe our public education system is in trouble and that I have the experience and leadership to change that,” Democratic candidate for Arizona Superintendent of Public Instruction Penny Kotterman said. “It is just pretty much that simple.

‘It is in trouble on a variety of fronts. The standard line is that we are doing more and more with less and less, with more and more kids. We are not as successful across the state as we should be.  Our graduation rate lags the nation, our academic achievement is barely in the mid range, far too many children in the class with more than 30 students, and far too many under qualified teachers. This year the number of students in some classes it is pushing almost forty.

‘We are going the wrong direction and I have more than thirty years experience in public education and I think we need to turn that around.”

Democrat Kotterman believes that the most important thing is to recognize that we didn’t get into this hole in the last couple of years. The state must take some time to prioritize and rethink to get out of it.

She wants to focus on the recruitment and retention of a quality teaching force, to really create a data management system that would help us target and prioritize our funding and give us the basis for restructuring our funding formula, and third to completely restructure our testing and assessment for students, go back to focus on teaching and learning, using assessment to measure progress.

Regarding teachers, Superintendent of Public Instruction candidate Kotterman said, “We are in an interesting place. We are graduating more teachers than we have space for because of the economy, we need to make sure that those teachers are the top of their class, get entry level qualifications and uniformly enforce those qualifications across the system. As for those coming from other careers, we need to make sure there is not only knowledge, but also that they can teach. Right now we have so many certification methods, it is hard for people who are qualified from out of state to get to teach here, and at the same time, we have people who really aren’t qualified getting into teaching. So we need to find good people and focus on good working conditions so that they will stay.”

Candidate Kotterman says that the state has invested more than $10 million in a data management system and it is still unworkable. It needs to track students from kindergarten through college, so that we know who our students are and how they are doing. This can tell educators what is successful and what is not. The state needs to use data better, and that will help them to put money where it works and allow the state to revise the funding formula.

“For more than a decade we have been focused on testing instead of learning,” candidate Kotterman added.  “And it takes leadership to turn that around. AIMS has been more about punishing schools and teachers than it has been about student progress. I want to focus on best practices, gives teachers and parents information about their child’s learning and help us understand the real progress our kids are making against state, national and international standards.”

Arizonan Kotterman believes our public school system lacks leadership. She has been in public education for thirty-two years in a variety of roles. She feels the voters need to return this position to a public educator, in order to drive it to be better.

“I think the Superintendent’s race is something people don’t think about,” Democratic candidate for the Arizona office of Superintendent of Public Instruction Penny Kotterman said. “So I just urge voters to pay attention to the Superintendent of Public Instruction. It is an important race for education and the people.”

For more information go to www.pennykotterman.com

Article written by Joni Dahlstrom, sedonaeye.com Staff Writer  JoniD@SedonaEye.com  Sedona Times Publishing Election Central  c2010

1 Comment

  1. Bryan Isaacson says:

    Hi PK. I was just wondering what happened to since we last taught at Tempe. Hope all is well. Shoot back an email if you get a minute. Bryan

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