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WHEREAS, it is a constitutional obligation of the Commonwealth to provide an education for all her children;
WHEREAS, it is the policy of the Commonwealth to assure that public education at all levels is of such quality to provide every child a fair and full opportunity to reach his or her full potential;
WHEREAS, the Commonwealth has made important progress in education reform over the past fourteen years;
WHEREAS, data on graduation rates, readiness for college study, and the modern labor force indicate that there is significant work to be done to achieve quality public education for all;
WHEREAS, the demands of the global marketplace and the Commonwealth's own high standards and expectations continue to increase; and
WHEREAS, to meet those demands and to ensure that each individual has the opportunity to be a productive, engaged and contributing citizen, it is the policy of the Commonwealth to implement a comprehensive, child-centered public education system that begins before kindergarten, continues through grade 12 and higher education, and extends to work force development and lifelong learning;
NOW, THEREFORE, I, Deval L. Patrick, Governor of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution, Part 2, c.2, § 1, Art. I, hereby order as follows:
Section 1. There is hereby established the Readiness Project. The Readiness Project will develop a plan to implement fundamental and systemic reforms to public education in the Commonwealth over the next ten years. The plan will include (but not be limited to) recommendations to:
Section 2. The Readiness Project shall have three chairs and a Leadership Council, appointed by the Governor. The chairs and the Leadership Council may create working groups as they deem necessary to focus on particular challenges facing education in the Commonwealth. At a minimum, there shall be a working group on public higher education to support the tasks of the Readiness Project set out above that relate to the structure and mission of public colleges and universities.
Section 3. All members of the Project, including the chairs, the Leadership Council, and any working groups, shall serve without compensation in an advisory capacity and at the pleasure of the Governor. The Project will meet at such times and places as determined by the chairs.
Section 4. The Project shall submit its report and recommendations to the Governor on or before March 31, 2008.
Section 5. This Executive Order shall continue in effect until amended, superseded or revoked by subsequent Executive Order.
Given at the Executive Chamber in Boston this 6th day of August in the year of our Lord two thousand and seven and of the Independence of the United States two hundred and thirty-one.
DEVAL L. PATRICK
Commonwealth of Massachusetts
WILLIAM FRANCIS GALVIN
Secretary of the Commonwealth