I strongly encourage you all pick up a copy of today’s Wall Street Journal. Flip to the editorial section and tucked between mail bombs, robo-lending, and pension reform sits one of the most important stories in recent education reform history.
It’s title, “The Radical Education Reform You’ve Never Heard Of,” was only partly true until today. In fact, The Heartland Institute has heard of and been the leading force behind that parent trigger for months. We found the Parent Trigger in California, removed its major flaws and its unneccesary bureaucracy and turned it into the powerful tool for reformers that you’ll be hearing about in 2011.
It avoids the tired arguments of education reformers by instead putting parents in a place to make a (controlled) decision in their child’s education. In our version a simple majority of parents can trigger a school into a reform option: either bringing in a charter manager, offering all students vouchers, or closing the school.
States like Indiana, West Virginia, Michigan, Georgia, New Jersey, North Carolina, North Dakota, and Iowa will all be introducing the Heartland version of the parent trigger in 2011. I thank The Journal’s David Feith for his great peek into the parent trigger, though I’d suggest a rename for his article: “Parent Trigger: The Education Reform You’ll All Be Hearing About.”