- Posted August 30, 2012 by
This iReport is part of an assignment:
Sights and sounds of the RNC
Jeb Bush Pushes for Choice in Education
Tackling head-on as he began his speech, former Florida Governor Jeb Bush did not back down on defending his brother, George W, and his father George H. W. He directed his comments directly at President Barack Obama, acknowledging that his Administration was handed a tough job, but it was time to stop blaming his predecessor and start taking responsibility.
With that out of the way, Bush tackled the issue of education. Bush charged our broken schools need to be fixed. Bush claimed the failure of education was a moral failure.
Excerpts from his speech:
"This election is about the future of this nation. We can shape that future, with what we do here. With what we do November 6. We can restore America's greatness. That starts with a strong economy...a smart energy policy...lower deficits...and a president who puts America's workers and job-creators first....
"We must stop excusing failure in our schools and start rewarding improvement and success. We must have high academic standards that are benchmarked to the best in the world. All kids can learn. Governor Romney believes it, and the data proves it. While he was governor, Massachusetts raised standards and today their students lead the nation in academic performance....," Bush said.
Bush went on later to say, "Because he is a former governor, Mitt Romney understands that states must lead this national movement. In Massachusetts, Governor Romney narrowed the gap between students of different races, raised testing standards, and put into place a merit scholarship, the John and Abigail Adams Scholarship that gives students four tuition free years, at any Massachusetts public institution of higher learning. He's a champion for bringing hope to education. And he intends to be a champion for equality of opportunity... a president who always puts students first....
"So in this election, remember this: Our future as a nation is at stake. Fact is, this election is not about just one office. It is about one nation. If we want to continue to be the greatest nation on the planet, we must give our kids what we promise them: An equal opportunity. That starts in the classroom...it starts in our communities... it starts where you live. And it starts with electing Mitt Romney the next President of the United States."
Bush also praised the education system in Florida. He pointed out how much better students in Florida were doing than in many other states. He then in a surprise turned to allow a real teacher from Florida to speak who stated, "Students matter most."
Making the case for choice, Bush said that parents must be allowed the ability to find the right school that would provide a better education for their children.
"Shouldn't parents have that kind of choice for their kids in schools?" Bush asked.
"Choose. You can either help the politically powerful unions or you can help kids," Bush proclaimed.
Turning then to emphasize his point on choice, Bush brought to the stage a former student who was given a choice under the choice program Bush implemented in Florida. Then it was a listing of Republican governors who are improving test scores for students by expanding choice in their states.
The job for Bush tonight was to press the education agenda of GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney and the Republican Party. Bush made the case and made it forcefully.
From the Cornfield, Bush, without having his father or brother at the convention, pulled the Bush faction behind the unity ticket the party is seeking as the convention ends and the real race begins.