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Event Summary

According to Connecticut Governor Dannel Malloy, there is no “one-size-fits-all” approach to school reform. Rather, effective reform takes bipartisanship, strong leadership, and accountability from key stakeholders. In his keynote address at AEI on Monday, Governor Malloy highlighted his state’s sweeping 2012 education reform bill, which increased funding for charter schools, piloted a new teacher evaluation system, and created a Commissioner’s Network that allows the state government to take over and turn around chronically underperforming schools — all significant reforms for a state grappling with one of the country’s largest academic achievement gaps.

In his subsequent conversation with AEI’s Frederick M. Hess, Governor Malloy acknowledged that Connecticut “had taken a back seat on school reform for a very long time,” and as a result was attempting “to do more in less time” when it comes to implementing the Common Core State Standards, restructuring high schools and community colleges to meet the needs of a 21st-century economy, and helping teachers adjust to the new evaluation system. Finally, the governor acknowledged using his bully pulpit role to drive his school reform agenda forward.
–Daniel Lautzenheiser

Event Description

Since taking office in Connecticut in 2011, Governor Dannel Malloy (D-CT) has made K–12 school reform a centerpiece of his agenda, calling education “the civil rights issue of our time.” To date, the state has passed key legislation surrounding teacher accountability, charter schooling, and turning around underperforming schools. At the same time, Connecticut has one of the nation’s largest academic achievement gaps, and Governor Malloy has faced pushback from teachers unions on his efforts surrounding teacher evaluation.

Join us for a conversation with Governor Dannel Malloy as he discusses the successes and challenges of accomplishing school reform at the state level.

If you are unable to attend, we welcome you to watch the event live on this page. Full video will be posted within 24 hours.


1:00 PM
Registration and Lunch

1:30 PM
Opening Remarks:
Frederick M. Hess, AEI

1:35 PM
Dannel Malloy, Governor of Connecticut

1:55 PM
Frederick M. Hess, AEI
Dannel Malloy, Governor of Connecticut

2:20 PM
Question-and-Answer Session

2:30 PM

Event Contact Information

For more information, please contact Daniel Lautzenheiser at [email protected], 202.862.5843.

Media Contact Information

For media inquiries, please contact [email protected], 202.862.5829.

Speaker Biographies

Frederick M. Hess is resident scholar and director of education policy studies at AEI. An educator, political scientist, and author, Hess studies a range of K–12 and higher education issues. He pens the Education Week blog Rick Hess Straight Up and has authored influential books on education including “Cage-Busting Leadership” (Harvard Education Press, 2013), “The Same Thing Over and Over” (Harvard University Press, 2010), “Education Unbound” (ASCD, 2010), “Common Sense School Reform” (Palgrave Macmillan, 2006), “Revolution at the Margins” (Brookings Institution Press, 2002), and “Spinning Wheels” (Brookings Institution Press, 1998). He has edited widely cited volumes on education philanthropy, urban school reform, how to stretch the school dollar, education entrepreneurship, what we have learned about the federal role in education reform, and No Child Left Behind. He also serves as executive editor of Education Next; as lead faculty member for the Rice Education Entrepreneurship Program; on the Review Board for the Broad Prize in Urban Education; and on the boards of directors of the National Association of Charter School Authorizers, 4.0 Schools, and the American Board for the Certification of Teaching Excellence. A former high-school social studies teacher, Hess has taught at the University of Virginia, the University of Pennsylvania, Georgetown University, Rice University, and Harvard University.

Dannel Malloy was elected governor of Connecticut in November 2010. Governor Malloy’s top agenda items have included reinventing the Connecticut economy by growing jobs, improving public education, and stabilizing the state’s finances. In 2012, he signed into law a school reform bill that has been called a national model. The legislation has provided hundreds of millions of additional dollars to go to school districts, in exchange for holistic changes that will prepare students to compete in the 21st-century economy. In 2013, Governor Malloy was proud to push for what some have called a “transformational investment” in the University of Connecticut; the Next Generation Connecticut program will ensure that Connecticut residents are in a position to compete for jobs in emerging fields like bioscience and digital media. Finally, the governor has also called for and funded the creation of a new office of early childhood to ensure that all of Connecticut’s children have access to a quality early-childhood learning experience. Before being elected governor, Malloy was a prosecutor in Brooklyn, New York, serving for four years as an assistant district attorney. Before that, he was Stamford, Connecticut’s longest-serving mayor, serving for 14 years from 1995 to 2009.

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