DFL gubernatorial candidate Mark Dayton is promising teachers that if elected, he will work with them, not against them.
Dayton spoke today at the annual Education Minnesota professional conference in St. Paul. The statewide teachers union, has had an especially rocky relationship with Gov. Tim Pawlenty, who has often accused the union of blocking important education reforms, including new approaches to licensing and tenure. The union is backing Dayton for governor.
Dayton told teachers that he understands education is about the magic they bring to the classroom.
"It's so absurd to be talking about education with teachers somehow the obstacle or the adversary," Dayton said. "Education happens with you, through you, because of you. And I want the state of Minnesota to be an ally."
In his introduction of Dayton. Education Minnesota President Tom Dooher offered a vigorous defense of his union and a sometimes stinging indictment of its critics. Using the parlance of the No Child Left Behind Law, Dooher took immediate aim at Pawlenty.
"After eight years of patient effort, we have come to the conclusion that Tim Pawlenty has failed to make adequate yearly progress as our governor for Minnesota, Dooher said. "We recommend he be reassigned for immediate remediation."
Here's audio of Dooher: Listen
Here's audio of Dayton: Listen