Verne Duncan

Abstract/Description: Interview with Verne Duncan. Superintendent of Public Instruction, 1975-1989, Oregon State Senator (12th District), 1997-2003. Verne Duncan (interviewed February 4, 2016) was "always interested in what was going on," and with a family involved in state politics he had exposure to "what was going on" at an early age. Education was always important to the Duncan family and with his early work as a teacher and school superintendent Duncan's decision to run for the office of Oregon State Superintendent of Public Instruction was a natural fit. He served in that capacity from 1975-1989 and oversaw major changes in school funding and focus during his tenure. Moving Oregon to adopt an education model suited for the 20th century rather than the 19th century was a major goal for Duncan. This forward-looking approach was tempered by an ongoing budget crisis throughout the state that hit education funding particularly hard. His time in office also covered some unique situations in education in Oregon's history. The most prominent of which was the clash between the religious cult of the Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh and their running of public schools in Antelope, Oregon. Another case during that same time period also involved religious freedom: that of a Sikh teacher to be allowed to wear her religious clothing while teaching at a public school in Eugene. In 1997, Verne Duncan was appointed to fill a vacant Oregon Senate seat, one which he was later elected to and served through 2003.
Subject(s): n-us-or
Duncan, Verne A -- Interviews
Oregon -- Officials and employees -- Interviews
Oregon -- Politics and government
Date Issued: 20162016