Minneapolis Federal Reserve chief Neel Kashkari and former Minnesota Supreme Court Justice Alan Page visited Fairmont High School on Thursday to put forth a plan to shrink the states acheivement gap to state officials and offer their solution. It is a proposed state constitutional amendment they believe will create the pressure to make state lawmakers, the governor and the courts ensure that every child receives a quality education.
The proposed amendment reads: “All children have a fundamental right to a quality public education that fully prepares them with the skills necessary for participation in the economy, our democracy, and society, as measured against uniform achievement standards set forth by the state. It is a paramount duty of the state to ensure quality public schools that fulfill this fundamental right.”
Page and Kashkari support a constitutional amendment because it carries permanence, while lawmakers come and go, and political parties shift in and out of power. As things stand now, policies can switch every two or four years.
Page said the amendment will be enforceable, which means families can sue in court if they believe their children are not receiving a quality education. He described this as a “strong incentive” for the state to perform.
To put their amendment in front of voters this fall, Page and Kashkari need approval from the Legislature.