SAN DIEGO - One day after urging a series of education changes in his State of the State address, Gov. Jerry Brown said today that he expects a major part of his plan to face staunch opposition, while other elements remain murky.
The Democratic governor called his proposal to change the categorical funding system for public schools a "heavy lift," and he predicted a tussle in the Legislature. He said wealthy areas of the state are likely to object to a plan he said would shift money to lower-income schools.
"That's a big, major reform with real bite in it," Brown said.
Brown is also proposing less state testing, but it is not yet clear exactly how some of his other ideas about education might come to fruition.
"The actual details we'll get soon," he told reporters after speaking in San Diego this afternoon.
Months after he first suggested establishing local panels to evaluate classrooms, Brown said today that he still plans to design such a program.
"I want to design a visitation program so that every classroom is visited on a regular basis, and there's written evaluations of how things are," he said. "It's almost a form of mini, mini-regular accreditation."
Asked who might be on such a panel, Brown said, "I think it should be outside people. You don't want to have people controlled by the district."
He said panels could include teachers and experts.
"It should be a balanced panel of people who can say, 'Hey, this teacher is cutting it and this teacher is not, and here's why we think that.'"
Brown is campaigning for a November ballot initiative to raise taxes, framing it as a choice between taxes and schools. In a question-and-answer session after speaking in San Diego, at least one guest took exception.
"It appears you are holding education hostage," a question card read to Brown said. "Please explain."
Brown answered, "Education is the largest part of the budget ... When you need money, education cannot be ignored."