LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC) - Governor Bobby Jindal spoke about his education reform plan to the Chamber Southwest Louisiana on Friday, March 9.
As the legislative session gets closer, Jindal is pushing his education reform proposal. He said the state's school system will never reform itself and the kids of Louisiana deserve an opportunity to succeed.
"The reason that it's so important, if we want to continue to outperform the southern and national economies these next four years or the future, we've got to improve education in Louisiana," Jindal said.
Nearly 44-percent of public schools in La. received a D or F letter grade and changing the state's educational system is vital.
"This is our top priority, not only for this session this year, this is so important for the future of Louisiana," he said.
Louisiana ranks in the bottom five for national educational outcomes and Jindal said 70-percent of companies that want to move to or expand in the state are concerned with finding a skilled worker.
"For us to continue to succeed for our children to continue to have those opportunities to pursue their dreams here at home, we have to give them a great education," Jindal said.
The education reform proposal is made up of four bills that will be presented throughout the legislative session which begins on March 12.
Jindal said he wants better teachers in the classrooms and change the way teachers are paid, by paying more. Second, give students more learning opportunities and educational resources. He said "the dollar should follow the students, instead of making the students follow the dollars."
Third, give educators more flexibility with learning and educational opportunities.
"Let's make sure they've got the flexibility to innovate while we still hold them accountable," he said.
And the fourth bill of the proposal is to stress academic content of early childhood learning programs.
Jindal said they are working with legislators to pass these four bills. And he is certain the education reform proposal will work to better the schools in the state.
"The whole point of these reforms is to make sure every child has access to a great education, so whether it's the parent trigger so they don't have to be trapped in a failing school or whether it's the tools to reward great teachers that are willing to go teach kids in harder subjects or in schools facing greater challenges, whether it's the choices for parents to escape through online and other courses, we're absolutely giving schools and families the tools they need to get a great education for their children," Jindal said.