Republican J. Glenn Beall Jr. promised yesterday to give $31 million more in aid to public education in Maryland if he is elected governor next week.
Besides helping schools meet their costs, Beall said the money would pay for a new program to evaluate teachers and school administrations and to improve vocational education, the curiculum for gifted students and for programs to help students who have dropped out of school.
These proposals were made in Beall's final issue paper of the campaign and he criticized the lack of discipline in the lives of youngsters.
Beall said he was "troubled by . . . inability of parents and the unwillingness of public agencies to impose appropriate discipline standards and enforce behavioral limits" on students.
He suggested imposing a uniform discipline code on all 24 school systems in Maryland and changing state law to allow victims of juvenile offenders to sue the juvenile's parents for as much as $1,000 in damages. He also said he would encourage community programs to keep first offenders from repeating crimes.
Democrat Harry R. Hughes has said he would increase state aid to education if he because governor but he has been reluctant to name a figure. When Beall said earlier that he would add $6 million to the public education. Hughes described such a pledge as "a drop in the bucket."
As politicans have done for the past three years. Beall stressed how important it is for schools to go "back to basics." But to insure children are taught to read and write, Beall said, the teachers have to be competent. Beall then recommended setting up an evaluation program - one he has yet to devise - because "we cannot tolerate any bad teachers regardless of how small the number is."
White Beall promised the increase in aid for education, he also warned that the money should go for instructional costs not to be "siphoned off for larger administrative bureaucracies as studies have shown is being done."
The governor's commission on funding of public education is now considering changes in the formula used to decide how much money local systems receive in stage aid. Hughes has said he will wait for the recommendations from that committee, expected in December, before he makes detailed suggestions for changing the state public education aid forumla.