Thursday, November 8, 2012

An Educational Choice Champion for Indiana’s Families: Tony Bennett

The education reform movement was saddened to learn Tuesday that Indiana State Superintendent of Public Education Tony Bennett lost his seat to challenger Glenda Ritz.

Bennett has gained widespread praise for his education reforms since being elected, which include revamping teacher evaluations, leading state take-overs of struggling public schools, and expanding educational options.  In that last category, Bennett has been hailed for expanding charter schools and leading efforts to create a statewide voucher program. That voucher program, the Choice Scholarship Program, enrolled nearly 4,000 students in the program’s first year and more than 9,000 students in the program’s second year.

Dr. Bennett has dedicated his life to improving the lives of children. Before becoming superintendent, he spent his career working as a teacher, coach, and assistant superintendent. He holds a bachelor's and a master's degree from Indiana University Southeast and received his Ed.D. and Superintendent's License from Spalding University.

Earlier this year, the Alliance for School Choice awarded Bennett its John T. Walton Champions for School Choice Award, which is given to a prominent leader in the school choice movement for groundbreaking and dedicated work for America’s children. 

The election loss is a sad moment for Indiana’s children, but thanks to a strong coalition of advocates and elected officials, we’re certain that educational options will continue to thrive in the Hoosier State. And no matter what Bennett does next, we know he'll be working to improve the lives of children.

- American Federation for Children | Alliance for School Choice, MSG

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