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A governor who gets it

Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels likes to point to other states when he defends the $297 million in education budget cuts he ordered this year. But not all states are cutting funds for schools.

Gov. Ed Rendell of Pennsylvania is actually proposing more spending for education, especially early childhood education. The Democratic governor's $29 billion spending plan for 2010-2011 includes increases for basic education. He has proposed new taxes on large companies drilling for natural gas and taxes on cigars and smokeless tobacco. The $86 million in revenue would go toward preschool for 3- and 4-year-olds. Almost $40 million would go toward Head Start programs.

"I have to say how blessed we are to have a governor that gets it," said John Sarandrea, superintendent of Sharon City, Pa., schools, "That realizes that the investment in education is the way to go."

The Journal Gazette
Karen Francisco, editorial page editor for The Journal Gazette, has been an Indiana journalist since 1981. She writes frequently about education for The Journal Gazette opinion pages and here, where she looks at the business, politics and science of learning as it relates to northeast Indiana, the state and the nation. She can be reached at 260-461-8206 or by e-mail at