Dueling governors: Corbett, Rendell lecture on education spending

    Governors past and present are calling for different approaches to education funding in Pennsylvania.

    It was like a case of dueling governors Tuesday with their Capitol Rotunda rallies separated by less than an hour.

    First, Gov. Tom Corbett stood at a podium, surrounded by students and supporters of school vouchers and school choice. He said pumping more money into public education isn’t going to fix the system’s problems.

    “Go back and look at it, we have been spending more money,” Corbett said. “We haven’t gotten any better, as far as I’m concerned.”

    And then came Corbett’s predecessor, former Gov. Ed Rendell, citing a federal study showing the commonwealth was among a handful of states whose public schools improved in all grades and subjects over the past eight years.

    “So don’t let anybody stand at this rostrum or anywhere else and tell you that you can’t make public education work,” said Rendell.

    A vouchers proposal very close to Corbett’s platform has passed in the state Senate. Rendell said he hopes, even if it passes in the House, it doesn’t stop the Legislature from restoring state funding to education.

    Want a digest of WHYY’s programs, events & stories? Sign up for our weekly newsletter.

    It will take 126,000 members this year for great news and programs to thrive. Help us get to 100% of the goal.