Press Release(s)

Appointment of David Long as Governor’s New Secretary of Education Sends “A Powerful Message”

Coalition pledges to work with Long to ensure success of Governor’s efforts to improve learning and make education more relevant.

 March 28, 2007 SACRAMENTO — The GetREAL coalitionrepresenting business, labor, education, agriculture, public safety and health care said today’s naming of David L. Long as the Governor’s new Secretary of Education “sends a very powerful message that the Governor is sincere about improving California schools,” and pledged to work with the new secretary to expand career technical education and strengthen academics.

“With thirty percent of high school freshman dropping out of school and thirty percent of four-year college students failing to earn a degree, major reforms are clearly needed to make school more relevant, more inspiring and more important for today’s students,” said GetREAL co-chair Jack Stewart, president of the California Manufacturers & Technology Association. “Given his long record of experience and his clear dedication to students, we’re confident that Mr. Long shares the Governor’s belief that
a four-year college degree isn’t the only path to success.”

The Governor recently told a career technical education summit he hosted “it’s very clear that a lot of students are dropping out because we don’t offer them alternatives. We only offer them one thing, and that is a four-year college, but there is nothing else for them to shoot towards.”

“We share the Governor’s belief that career technical education will help inspire more students to stay in school, give them more paths to success and create more job opportunities for them in our 21st Century
economy,” said GetREAL co-chair Bob Balgenorth, president of the State Building & Construction Trades Council. “We will do everything we can to help Mr. Long succeed in the Governor’s effort to make education more relevant for California’s next generation of workers, whether they choose college or not.”

GetREAL is working to expand career technical education in California schools, so students benefit from a balanced education that includes challenging academic studies and “hands-on” learning.

A recent survey found that 94% of the state’s voters agreed that providing K-12 students with a “well rounded” education would provide
more career opportunities and help them succeed with or without a four year college degree.

Media contacts

California Manufacturers & Technology Assn.: Gino DiCaro -- 916-498-3347 (m)916-730-3443

State Building & Construction Trades Council: Jim Lewis -- 916-443-4302

GetREAL coalition members include the California Manufacturers & Technology Association, State Building & Construction Trades Council, California Farm Bureau, California Correctional Peace Officers Association, Western States Petroleum Association, Johnson & Johnson, California Agricultural Teachers Association, California Business Education Association, California Industrial and Technology Education Association, California Space Authority, Chevron, California Association of Sheet Metal and Air Conditioning Contractors and Minorities in Law Enforcement.

Press release archive