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O'Malley lays out an education agenda

Sun reporter Liz Bowie, just back from the state School Board meeting, reports that Gov. O'Malley's appearance there this morning was significantly more substantive than these things usually are. She's writing up the details now (I'll add a link as soon as she posts a story), but he outlined a seven point plan for education policy in the state over the coming years, saying he wants to use the federal stimulus money coming out of Washington to make structural changes in Maryland's educational system.

Among the biggies was a plan to switch the tests Maryland students take to a system that would be comparable with international standards. He's also pitching increasing emphasis on science, math, technology, the environment and finance and wants better training for principals.

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This is pretty unusual; governors have rarely gotten involved much in educational policy in Maryland, generally leaving the matter up to long-time schools chief Nancy Grasmick. Liz reports that Grasmick seemed at least reasonably well disposed to the governor's ideas, but given their history of not always seeing eye-to-eye, we'll monitor this to see how it develops.

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