Maes would suspend education funding provided by Amendment 23

Yesterday at a Denver forum bringing the three top Colorado gubernatorial candidates together for the first time, Republican Dan Maes said he would suspend Amendment 23, which requires annually increased spending on Colorado public schools until test results show improvement.

“I have two kids in public schools, so don’t misunderstand me, but I wouldn’t mind seeing a suspension of 23 until we start seeing CSAPS going up. We have to stop throwing money at problems,” he said.

Democrat John Hickenlooper, current mayor of Denver, didn’t specifically address Amendment 23 but said he has worked hard to ensure that Denver Public Schools and the city work well together. He said he visited all 151 DPS schools during his first term as mayor. “I don’t think anyone running for governor before has ever done that.

“We need to find a system that measures not just math and reading but also teaching a kid to hold his temper. If they can’t read, though, how are they going to participate in the world? How are they going to have a quality life?” he asked.

He said he supports giving principals more authority to manage their schools and making sure districts have the ability to close failing schools.

“The key to education is quality teachers and principals. That is what it all comes down to. Most teachers want to do the right thing. They want these kids to learn,” he said.

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Scot Kersgaard has been managing editor of a political newspaper, editor and co-owner of a ski town newspaper, executive editor of eight high-tech magazines (where he worked with current Apple CEO Tim Cook), deputy press secretary to a U.S. Senator, and an outdoors columnist at the Rocky Mountain News. He has an English degree from the University of Washington. He was awarded a fellowship to study internet journalism at the University of Maryland's Knight Center for Specialized Journalism. He was student body president in college. He spends his free time hiking and skiing.

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