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Jan 5, 2011 12:23 AM

New State Superintendent John Huppenthal speaks on Mexican-American studies

TUCSON - On his first full day on the job, new Arizona State Superintendent John Huppenthal is ready to review the Tucson Unified School District's Mexican-American studies.

He says he wants to conduct a full review of not only the studies, but the district's statistics on student success, as well as the Department of Education's statistics.

Huppenthal says he agrees with former state superintendent Tom Horne's findings that these courses are not in compliance with the new state law. He also says he will stay firm with the 10% cut to T.U.S.D. funding if they do not comply in 60 days.

"We are willing to engage in shock therapy. So the answer is yes, we're willing to move forward," Huppenthal said.

But in a press conference Monday, new T.U.S.D. Superintendent Dr. John Pedicone said he believes the classes are in compliance, and they will defend that in court.

"Students that go through this program, achieve very well not only on the AIMS test, but also in terms of graduation rate and in terms of access to the university," Pedicone said.

The district has said that they plan to file for an appeals hearing. If that happens, new Attorney General Tom Horne would represent the state.

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