On Friday, the Tim James campaign announced that former State Board of Education (SBOE) member Betty Peters (R) endorsed James for governor in the May 24 Republican primary.

“I strongly support Tim James to be the next governor of AL,” Peters said in a statement. “He is a committed and consistent conservative.  What sets Tim apart and makes him uniquely suited for this job is his deep understanding of what is required for children to get a solid educational foundation, particularly in English and math, but also in learning the values through history and literature that will make them good citizens.”

Peters, both on the Board and following her SBOE service, has been a staunch opponent of both the Common Core state education standards and the Alabama College and Career Ready Standards which the SBOE passed over Peters’ objection.

“It’s embarrassingly well known that since Alabama adopted the Common Core State Standards Initiative in 2010, our students have gone from the middle of the states to the very bottom on national tests,” Peters said. “Unlike our current governor and many legislators, Tim understands that Alabama still has “Common Core” standards and assessments regardless of the phony name change “College and Career Readiness Standards” which occurred in 2013.   Unlike his predecessors, Tim James has committed to use his position as governor to replace these failing standards and restore traditional teaching, curricula and testing, something the present governor has not even attempted to do.

“I am convinced that unlike Gov. Ivey, who has been very strongly influenced by special interests such as the Business Council of AL (BCA) and the A Plus Education Partnership and Best Practices Center, Tim James understands what is wrong in education and will take the time and energy needed to get education back on track in order to give our boys and girls the educational foundation and opportunity they need to fulfill their potential. We need to look no further than Florida to see the importance of electing the right governor.”

“Mrs. Peters has been a tremendous leader serving as an Alabama State School Board member,” James said. “While Alabama’s math and reading scores have plummeted under Kay Ivey’s leadership, advocates like Betty Peters have worked tirelessly to improve the education system and cut through the red tape. As governor, I will deconstruct the education bureaucracy that is failing our kids and rebuild it with parents, teachers and principals fully in charge of the success of our students.”

Peters served as a representative for the Alabama State School Board for District 2, representing the Wiregrass from 2003 to 2019. Peters also worked for Auburn University, the United States Taiwan Defense Command in Taipei, Taiwan, and the United States Social Security Administration.

James spoke out against Common Core during the gubernatorial debate held in Huntsville.

“Common Core and critical race theory did not come out of nowhere. They were designed to undermine our country, and their target is our children,” James said.

He stated that the standards were "cognitive dissonance" and that “there is no right answer there."

James and Peters both opposed the Numeracy Act, which passed the legislature during the 2022 Alabama Regular Legislative Session.

“They are going to spend $80 million to hire 22-year-old math coaches to teach the teacher[s] how to teach Common Core math,” James said. “They want to hire 22-year-old teachers to teach 42-year-old teachers how to teach math. It is crazy.”

Peters served on the State Board of Education from 2003 to 2019.

James is a Greenville businessman and the son of former Gov. Fob James (R). James previously lost bids for governor in 2002 and 2010.

Lindy Blanchard, Lew Burdette, Stacy George, Ivey, James, Donald Trent Jones, Dean Odle, Dave Thomas, and Dean Young are all running in the Republican primary for governor on May 24.

Yolanda Rochelle Flowers, Patricia Salter Jamieson, Arthur Kennedy, Chad “Chig” Martin, Malika Sanders Fortier and Doug “New Blue” Smith are all running for the Democratic nomination.

Both primaries are on May 24.

To connect with the author of this story, or to comment, email brandon.moseley@1819News.com.

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