Johnson says work requirements, school choice provide path out of poverty

GOP governor candidate advocates school choice, more direct parental role.

He said he’s open to options like school vouchers or tax credits to support parents who want to send their children to another school. He would also push for a “parent trigger” law. It would allow parents to make dramatic reforms at a “failing” school — like turning it into a charter school — if a certain percentage of parents passed a referendum, he said.

His proposal came the same day as DFL gubernatorial candidate Lori Swanson said she would appoint a “career and technical education czar” to help prepare students to fill workforce gaps in areas like health care and information technology. DFL candidate Erin Murphy plans to announce her education agenda Tuesday, which she said would build on Gov. Mark Dayton’s work.

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