Sunday, March 05, 2017

Getting a Head Start on the Week.  It's going to be a busy week as the first policy deadline approaches, so I thought I would get ahead of the curve in the blogging game.  The Senate posts Monday's bill introductions on Saturday, so I'm actually a day late getting them to you.  So here they are:



School Choice Hits the National Scene.  The Trump Administration hasn't said a lot about education, but it appears that increased school choice--including the use of public dollars for private education--will be a central element if and when his education platform is rolled out.  This issue has been debated at the state level by a number of legislatures and many of these states allow for public school choice and, in some cases, limited use of school vouchers.  Seeing that the Federal government only funds about 10% of education costs nationally, it will be interesting to see how greater choice is promoted and what it entails.  President Trump is right when he says education is an important civil rights issue (a number of folks on both sides of President Trump don't consider it the biggest, or most pressing civil rights issue, but I digress), but how to ensure access to quality education programs throughout the country will be a daunting task.

What makes it even more daunting is the fact that the evidence that school choice improves educational outcomes simply doesn't seem to be there to support some of the initiatives the Trump Administration is expected to promote.  That, along with concerns about the potential for financial hi-jinks at private and charter schools, dull enthusiasm for these reforms.

Here are a couple of articles in that vein:

From The American Prospect (Left of Center):  How States Turn K-12 Scholarships Into Money-Laundering Schemes

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