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The biggest teachers union in Indiana supports Jennifer McCormick for governor



Indianapolis, Indiana – Jennifer McCormick, a Democratic candidate for governor, stated on Wednesday that Indiana may improve its falling academic results by putting more money back into conventional public schools.

The Indiana State Teachers Association declared that McCormick has received the endorsement of I-PACE, its political action committee, in her bid to become the next governor of the state. In the Democratic primary, McCormick, a former principal and teacher who served as Indiana’s last elected superintendent of public instruction from 2017 to 2021, has no opposition.

McCormick was an ardent supporter of traditional public schools during her tenure in government, according to ISTA President Keith Gambill.

“She managed over half of our state’s budget with integrity and a focus on efficiency, directing funds where they were most needed,” he said. “We need a leader like Dr. McCormick, someone who understands these issues deeply, not just from the perspective of policy but through the lens of personal experience.”

McCormick’s campaign has placed a strong emphasis on education. She claims that state legislators’ decision to broaden the eligibility for school choice vouchers deprives urban and rural schools of desperately needed cash, and she has been a particularly outspoken opponent of the move. She pledged to restore greater financing to conventional public schools and to make sure that curriculum and training requirements for teachers and schools are uniform and well-defined.

“If we take care of our teachers and we give them the support that they don’t only need but they deserve, everybody wins,” she said. “Our kids win. Our families win. Our communities win. The state of Indiana wins.”

Her campaign now has the support of a financially robust group thanks to the PACE’s endorsement. I-PACE has approximately $1.3 million in cash on hand, according to state reports, and according to Gambill, the group hasn’t determined whether to back any additional statewide candidates. With only $222,000, McCormick’s campaign is far short of the Republican rivals Brad Chambers, Eric Doden, Mike Braun, and Suzanne Crouch in terms of war chests.

McCormick took issue with politicians’ repeated attempts to alter the criteria for teaching, such as their establishment of a program for adjunct teachers that does not call for a license.

McCormick responded that she didn’t think teacher standards could be held accountable for any one specific incident, but that better training and resources are required. This was in response to a question about whether she blamed changes to teacher licensing for a recent incident in which lawyers claim an IPS teacher encouraged his students to beat up a child with special needs. She added that it takes too long to remove a teaching license.

McCormick also made fun of the year’s main legislative focus, a new law that deters pupils from continuing their education once they fail the IREAD test three times and mandates literacy testing starting in the second grade. She noted that addressing Indiana’s reading deficit would require significantly more investment in child care and universal pre-K education.



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