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Duncan Lays Out Positions in Confirmation Hearing

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Chicago Public Schools chief Arne Duncan appears to have passed his first test toward becoming the country’s next education secretary. Duncan Tuesday breezed through his confirmation hearing with the U.S. Senate’s education committee. During the hearing, Duncan said he’s committed to giving bonuses to teachers whose students show improvement.

DUNCAN: The more we can reward excellence, the more we can incent excellence, the more we can get our best teachers to work in those hard to staff schools and communities, the better our students are going to do. So I plan on spending a lot of time thinking about how we continue to innovate and how we continue to incent great talent to come into teaching and keep that great talent once it’s there.

Teachers unions have spoken out against so-called merit pay. Also in the hearing, Duncan said he’d like to expand early childhood education in the U.S. He also said he strongly supports charter schools and challenging the “status quo.”

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