Parents and students should be treated more like customers of a service business, with private schools competing to do the best job possible for each child. Not only would schools be run more efficiently with little or no bureaucracy, but they would be responsive to their customers: parents and teachers.
The heat on Common Core was high this spring, but I predict it will be even higher come state legislative sessions this January. It’s the last year states can conceivably avoid joining the train wreck that will be Common Core tests, which are due to replace state tests in March and following. But the earnest moms and dads that comprise the Common Core grassroots have been largely burned by their representatives, who either have responded to serious arguments by relabeling Common Core or diverting blame for it. They’re politicians, man, not representatives.
Widening efforts to blame neonicotinoid pesticides for honeybee “colony collapse disorder” and other “beepocalypse” problems have taken a fascinating turn.
Insisting that scientific evidence shows a clear link between neonics and honeybee population declines, EU anti-insecticide campaigners persuaded the European Union to impose a two-year ban on using the chemicals. Farm organizations and the Union’s Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Department unsuccessfully opposed the ban, arguing that evidence for a link is not persuasive, and actual field studies in Canada and elsewhere have found little risk to bees from the pesticides.
Obviously, Liberals have a very different philosophy than Conservatives. That is why a growing number of people are concerned about the unusual and disproportionate inequality that exists between Liberal professors and Conservative professors within America’s colleges and universities today. When there is an inequality as great as nine liberal professors to one Conservative professor in a college, it is impossible to believe the students are receiving a fair and balanced education. Parents and the public are seeking answers as to why the imbalance exists and calling upon universities to examine how to create a more balanced environment and learning experience for their children.
How has Shimer College done since the inmates took it over? A ranking of colleges published by Washington Monthly in October — based on cost of tuition, student indebtedness, and graduation rates and adjusted for the percentage of students who are minority or low-income — ranked Shimer the worst college in America.
What has happened to universities and colleges, school that once identified themselves as sanctuaries for free speech, tolerance, and diversity? Why did they abandon that excellent goal as an open market place for thought and ideas, to become instead institutions of indoctrination to a specific political viewpoint?
Controversy continues over the adoption of new schoolbooks in Texas, as environmental lobbyists fight to have sound science concerning global warming removed from the curriculum. With the ability to influence millions of schoolchildren regarding climate change, environmental alarmists are trying to ensure their message is the only one heard.
On October 29, a group of Amherst College faculty members sent an open letter to the president of the college and the chairman of the board of trustees urging them to “move toward divesting the college of holdings in those corporations that are committed to fossil fuel extraction to the exclusion of making serious investments in renewable energy.” Regrettably, the faculty members’ letter made several false and malicious claims about The Heartland Institute, which we reply to in the letter below.
The Texas State Board of Education (TSBOE) is in the process of adopting new social studies and history textbooks. Once approved, the books will likely be used in schools for more than a decade, and because Texas is a huge market for textbooks, other states often adopt the choices Texas determines, thus making this decision particularly influential.
Only one week after Election Day, Washington, DC’s focus has shifted from furious campaigning to National Education Week and the Thought Leader Summit (held from Nov. 10–13), “a gathering of the leaders from education, business, and government who define and shape trends in public and private education.”
Education, business, and government leaders are gathering this week in Washington, DC to discuss the future of American education at the Thought Leader Summit (held from Nov. 10–13), an event held as a part of the National Education Initiative. Among the many topics that will be discussed is the advancement of online education, a technological gift that could save conservatism in America.
With election season in full swing, one of the most widely used political attacks is for candidates to accuse their opponents of wanting or having already committed “cuts to education” resulting in “teacher layoffs.”
The ongoing struggle between parents and the Missouri government over the state’s school transfer law is another example of politics and bureaucracy winning out over parents, children, and their futures.
Neal McCluskey, associate director of the Center for Educational Freedom at the Cato Institute, discusses a New York State teachers union lawsuit to overturn a Common Core gag order with Heartland’s Heather Kays.
California Gov. Jerry Brown has decided to appeal the Vergara decision on teacher tenure and other traditional job protections for teachers. This isn’t a surprising move, considering how much political backing Brown has received from teachers’ unions.