Governor promises to veto "Race To the Top" legislation

December 10, 2009 7:43:49 PM PST
Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger is promising to veto education legislation aimed at helping the state win $700 million of President Obama's "Race To The Top" competition.

A state assembly committee approved the bill, favored by unions, but criticized by charter schools, among others.

Those schools are now exempt from state education laws, but that would change under the sweeping new legislation.

The legislation also does not allow children in the lowest performing schools to transfer to any school in the state, or allow parents to force the overhaul of their children's school -- something favored by the governor.

"It is extremely important that when children are stuck in a failing school, that the parents have a right to take them out of that school and to a different school and a different district," said Gov. Schwarzenegger.

The state senate already passed a much tougher version of the legislation. Lawmakers are facing a January 19, 2010 deadline to qualify for funds under the president's education initiative.