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The Chula Vista teachers union used a visit from Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger as a platform to protest his education plans, chiefly the push to link standardized test scores to teacher evaluation so that California is eligible for added stimulus dollars from the federal government.

Schwarzenegger was scheduled to visit Chula Vista Learning Community Charter School this morning. The union held a press conference at the school to explain their opposition to his plans. I couldn’t make it to their meeting, but I phoned Jim Groth, a Chula Vista teacher and a board member of the statewide California Teachers Association, to talk about their announcements.

“What we are saying is, ‘Let’s slow down,’” Groth said as he left the Chula Vista school. “Changing the laws at the state would affect all districts. We’re talking about local control. Local school boards would not have that control — it would be dictated by Washington, D.C.”

Look for more debates like this in San Diego and around the state. This is going to be the issue to watch as California vies for more stimulus money. Will the federal pressure win out?

EMILY ALPERT

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