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PNS Daily Newscast - September 30, 2020 

Trump and Biden square off in a debate marked by interruptions; COVID-19 highlights neglect of undocumented residents.

2020Talks - September 30, 2020 

Last night was filled with interruptions at the first presidential debate between Donald Trump and Joe Biden.

WA Governor Honored at Dem Convention

August 25, 2008

Denver, CO - One of the first events at today's Democratic National Convention is a luncheon at which Washington Governor Chris Gregoire will receive an award. She's one of five governors being honored for their contributions to education, by the nation's largest teachers' unions, the American Federation of Teachers (AFT) and the National Education Association (NEA).

Last week, the 40th Phi Delta Kappa/Gallup Poll was released, an annual national survey of public attitudes toward public schools. For the sixth year in a row, respondents cited a lack of funding as the biggest problem facing schools. But Sandra Schroeder, president of AFT Washington, credits Gregoire for keeping Washington schools in better shape than most.

"As soon as she was elected, she started the 'Washington Learns' Blue Ribbon Commission; it came out with some terrific recommendations for improvement that she's been following through on. And, just generally, she keeps education high on her radar screen at all times."

Another finding of the national poll: eight out of ten people surveyed thought the federal "No Child Left Behind" program should either be scrapped or changed significantly. Schroeder says she's hopeful a new administration will make that a priority.

"As a teacher, when I look at the conventions, I'm looking for someone who can inspire us and help us believe that, finally, there'll be changes made that can really help the kids of this country receive the education they need - from the time they're little, until the time they're ready to go to work."

Gregoire has criticized "No Child Left Behind" for making more work for school districts without providing more funding, although its proponents say standardized testing is a good way to measure progress in the classroom.

Schroeder says the Governor can't be in Denver to accept the award, so AFT Washington attendees will bring it back for her.

Read the full Phi Delta Kappa/Gallup Poll results online, at

Chris Thomas, Public News Service - WA