CARSON CITY — Tennis champion Andre Agassi asked lawmakers on Wednesday to take advantage of “a ripe opportunity” to make education system changes in a state that ranks near the bottom nationally in K-12 per-pupil spending and graduation rates.
Agassi told Senate and Assembly education committees he understood there’s a difficult combination of a revenue shortfall coupled with the challenge of meeting student learning needs, but the state must help children succeed.
“I personally know what it feels like to underachieve and come in last because I slipped to an embarrassing low in my career,” the Las Vegan said. “My ranking was the tennis equivalent of being the state that comes in 50th.”
The tennis pro also gave lawmakers a progress report on his Andre Agassi College Preparatory Academy, a public charter school that serves at-risk students that he opened in Las Vegas in 2001. The school is set to graduate its first senior class in June.
Agassi spoke as lawmakers took testimony on charter school bills, including two that would create the Nevada Charter School Institute, which would explore the existing structure for charter schools to determine how they could be sponsored in the future.