Connecticut Governor Dannel Malloy rejected suggestions on Thursday that he asked his education commissioner to step down. The Governor and Commissioner Stefan Pryor appeared unified at an event announcing funding for struggling school districts.
Pryor announced last week he would not seek a second term if Malloy wins re-election. Malloy says it was not because Pryor was asked not to.
“It was a decision that he reached," Malloy said. "We did have the opportunity to talk about it. I did receive his letter on Monday. And as you note, I appear alongside my friend today.”
Pryor has been a source of controversy as he oversaw the rollout of Malloy's education reform efforts, including teacher evaluations and education standards. Pryor said he has a superb relationship with Malloy and he called the governor’s commitment to public education “breathtaking.”
“Sometimes, when you look at a transition point, and a change in term is such a point, it makes sense to pursue other opportunities,” Pryor said.
Malloy said the average tenure for a non-elected superintendent or education commissioner is less than two-and-a-half years in the U.S. Pryor has served nearly three years. Malloy and Pryor were in New Britain to announce nearly $133 million in funding for the state’s 30 lowest performing school districts.