- Obama Education Blueprint a Road Map to More Washington Control
This education spending spree has failed to improve outcomes for students over the past four-and-a-half decades. But increasing spending—and increasing the number of education employees—is popular with the unions, which may explain why we’ve seen a hiring boom over the last several decades. And now, reality is setting in, and many districts are having to make cuts. But the Obama Administration clearly isn’t interested in allowing states to consider reforms that would reduce costs and more efficiently use existing funds. And to show the governors how it’s done, the Administration released a staggering spending “blueprint” in conjunction with President Obama’s speech to the NGA.
- ASD Spells Out School Changes
Now that the state’s Achievement School District has named the three Memphis City Schools in which it will run charter schools and three others that will be run by the state as neighborhood schools, the move to a swift transition by August begins. Lester Elementary, Gordon Elementary and Cypress Middle will have state-run charter schools starting in August when the 2012-2013 school year begins. Corning Elementary, Frayser Elementary and Westside Middle – all part of the same schools-feeder pattern in Frayser – will be run by the state as “achievement schools” that retain their status as neighborhood schools starting in August.
- Our View: Teacher scores must coincide with school results
Some people would like to see the evaluation system abandoned. But that is not an option. Instead, the system should proceed with additional input from teachers and others along with outside evaluation and analysis. The goal is to improve public education outcomes. Identifying good teachers and poor teachers is important. But if the system is to be relied upon, teacher evaluations must correlate to overall school performance, right now that isn’t the case.
- Cap on Arizona Education Tax Credit Program Doubled
New legislation signed Wednesday by Arizona governor Jan Brewer doubles the old $500 cap on tax credits for individual taxpayer donations to k-12 tuition granting organizations. The Arizona program, upheld last year by the U.S. Supreme Court (in ACSTO v. Winn), cuts taxes on those who make donations to k-12 tuition scholarship organizations. The result is that the donation costs the taxpayer nothing, but it brings a wide range of new educational options within reach of families all across the state by helping them to pay independent school tuition.