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.”
Tagged: charter schools
To briefly summarize Common Core, the decision to adopt the Common Core standards was left almost exclusively in the hands of the governors and the state boards of education. The public was not made aware that our education system was in the process of being changed, and certainly we were clueless that all states had been asked to accept an education system initiated at the federal level, something our forefathers prudently warned against. However, forty-five states committed to those standards, and did so even before the standards and/or accompanying curriculum were completed.
Despite its deep effects on the character of our nation, conservatives and the general population often ignore what children are learning except when their own are in school, so I thank everyone reading this debate and my worthy, tenacious opponent, Mike Petrilli, for your time and attention. National Common Core testing and curriculum mandates are destructive, overall, but one good side-effect is creating the opportunity to discuss what children will learn, and why.
For the past several years, the policies that favor certain minority groups at the level of college admissions and public employment, commonly called affirmative action, have been on the back foot. Laws and constitutional amendments in various states, most notably in the liberal stronghold California in 1996, have restricted or banned outright the practice of discrimination on the basis of race, whether favoring the majority ethnic group or a minority. These movements ought to be welcomed by supporters of liberty. Our nation is founded on the principle of equality before the law. It seems inherently unjust to favor one group over another because of the color of their skin or ethnic history. It is doubly unjust that the organization engaging in such practices be the government to which we all pay taxes and from which we are meant to expect equal treatment and consideration.
Charter schools offer many cities a palatable mechanism for offering greater choice to families in the field of education. They do take some public funding, and they often rely on state infrastructure to operate, but these qualities ought to be weighed against the alternative, which is incompetent and corrupt state monopoly of education, especially in cities with greater levels of low-income households. The choice alone has helped revitalize competition in one of the most sclerotic and venal arms of the government apparatus. With the proven enhanced performance, wide popularity, and general social improvements charter schools provide it would seem like a no-brainer for city government to support.
Yet in New York City, the new mayor, Bill de Blasio, has been waging all-out war against the burgeoning charter school movement in his city.
Why are Indiana leaders not also considering, for example, standards from California and Massachusetts, which are known to have some of the best education standards in the country, along with Indiana’s former standards? Even evaluators from the pro-Common Core Fordham Institute rated all three of these states’ standards higher than Common Core. Given that, perhaps only the Indiana, California, and Massachusetts standards should be on the table, at least if we want “the best in the nation,” as Gov. Mike Pence has promised. This suggests politics is more important than quality.
This fall, Common Core tests are slated to roll out and essentially cement it (until the next big thing). These tests and their corresponding curriculum mandates will influence almost everything about most American schools: teacher evaluations, textbooks, learning software, school funding, even student grades. In 2013, most parents and teachers first met Common Core. Some began to complain about federal overreach, lack of public debate, pilot test questions and format, open-ended data collection, academic quality, technology costs for the all-online tests, and lack of training for teachers.
Last week was National School Choice Week. Negative vibes and views about school choice whether achieved through vouchers, charter schools, Educational Savings Accounts, or by other means are quite common.
…the Texas Legislature, with the help of rural Republican lawmakers, exclusively pursues more money and more regulations of a bigger bureaucracy, rather than empowering parents with choices.
As charter schools expand rapidly around the country, several states are still charter holdouts, including the Bluegrass State. Lisa Grover, senior director of state advocacy at the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools joins[…]
We couldn’t be prouder of our own Bruno Behrend, who recently drove up to a Tea Party Rally in Sheboygan, WI (otherwise known as “real America”) to talk about school[…]
Thanks to The Washington Examiner for publishing my piece today bout how the teachers unions in Connecticut worked behind the scenes to neuter the Parent Trigger school reform. The AFT[…]
In School Reform News’ latest podcast, Dr. Lewis Andrews and I discuss why suburban parents pose an obstacle to school reform. An article in the New York Times discusses this[…]
Heartland Institute President Joseph L. Bast was on “Wall Builders” with Rick Green Monday talking about the Taxpayers’ Savings Grants in Texas. As usual, Joe knocked it out of the[…]
Jay P. Greene has written a post on his blog today that should, if there were any justice, be inscribed on letters of gold blazoned across the sky. But since[…]
If you had asked me earlier this week if I thought Indiana’s SB 496, the Parent Trigger Act, would face any difficulty in conference, I would have said, in so[…]
Rock-Paper-Scissors is a game most any child can grasp. Rock breaks scissors, scissors cut paper, paper covers rock. California’s landmark Parent Empowerment Act—a.k.a. the Parent Trigger—is a little bit like[…]
Tens of thousands of people in at least 36 states this week will participate in more than 140 events touting the virtues of school choice. It’s the first annual National[…]