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Continued: Former Minnesota Gov. Al Quie is out front on education

  • Article by: LORI STURDEVANT , Star Tribune
  • Last update: September 21, 2013 - 5:37 PM

It must be a fine thing, I thought, to turn 90 and feel free to call for a major shakeup in school design and teacher requirements, without having to defend those controversial ideas in an election campaign.

Then I remembered my first long interview with gubernatorial candidate Al Quie in 1978. He was known as an education reformer as ranking minority member of the U.S. House Education and Labor Committee. His big campaign idea was smaller class sizes in grades K-3. But that was to be only the first step, he said then. He wanted young children to be schooled near their parents and teachers to have stronger relationships with their students.

When an elder statesman and education radical turns 90, his birthday gift is a fresh chance to pitch his favorite ideas at, say, a party for 400 friends. Or in a newspaper column.


Lori Sturdevant is a Star Tribune editorial writer and columnist. She’s at

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  • Former Minnesota Governor Al Quie, a Republican, speaking before a panel of lawmakers in 2011.

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