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Opinion | Governor Ivey delivers

Gov. Kay Ivey is true to her word.

Governor Kay Ivey delivered the State of the State for 2024 Tuesday February 6, 2024 in Montgomery, Ala. Governor’s Office /Hal Yeager
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Governor Kay Ivey is true to her word. On Tuesday, February 6 she said in her State of the State address that the report prepared by the Commission on Teaching and Learning would be her pre-K-12 educational blueprint for the final three years of her administration.

Now, as legislators, educators, business and industry leaders, and the public can see by reviewing her 2024-25 Education Trust Fund Budget proposal, she meant every word of what she said.

Following Governor Ivey’s Executive Order of January 18, 2023, creating the Commission on Teaching and Learning, the Commission met throughout most of 2023 to give Governor Ivey by December 1 the best possible proposals to improve prek-12 education. The main areas of emphasis were to address teacher shortages, improve student achievement, and to enhance public confidence in schools statewide. Governor Ivey responded by encompassing many of the Commission’s recommendations in the largest Education Trust Fund Budget ever proposed by an Alabama Governor.

Key elements of the Commission’s report with a value of over $300 million are found throughout her 2024-25 Education Trust Fund Budget and Supplemental Budget proposals. One of the main tenets of the report, increasing teacher recruitment, retention, and development, has been targeted by $120 million in increased funding for teacher pay raises and to make Alabama the highest starting teacher salary in the surrounding states. The Governor has also shown her continued support for the Alabama Literacy and Numeracy Acts with substantial funding increases. The rural broadband initiative received a $25 million increase, which the Commission stated would be vital in helping our rural and high-needs schools succeed in the 21st century. These are only a few examples of the ways the Governor has proven her commitment, alongside the Commission, to ensuring we are providing the resources needed for our student’s success.

Governor Ivey reviewed the Commission’s recommendations and selected the ones most critical to early success and then submitted them to the legislature. 2024 is a most pivotal year for public education and the Ivey Education Budget will greatly enhance the opportunities for every student to read and conquer math at grade level or above, to graduate from high school college and career ready, and to pursue postsecondary education and employment in Alabama’s growing economy.

Well done, members of the Commission on Teaching and Learning, and well done Governor Ivey.

Joe Morton, Ph.D., Chair, Commission on Teaching and Learning; President, Business and Education Alliance

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