In political debates on education, it's often argued that state officials should defer decision-making authority to districts in the name of local control. Yet this potentially empowers school employees far more than the families of children served by those schools.
On Dec. 1, 2017, the Missouri State Board of Education went into a closed session and ousted Commissioner Margie Vandeven. Yet that wasn’t the only controversial decision that day. In a unanimous vote, the board decided to classify the Normandy Schools Collaborative as provisionally accredited. That move meant that thousands of students lost the right to transfer to higher-performing schools. Now it seems that vote was made without all of the facts.
It is increasingly common to hear public statements downplaying the results of student tests. Such was the widespread reaction after the annual release of the highly reliable National Assessment of Educational Progress test scores in April, often called the "nation's report card."
By 2014, California was the top state in the nation in eighth-grade algebra enrollment. That was the year Common Core went into place. It erased all those gains almost immediately, shows a new Hoover Institution analysis.
It’s hard not to sympathize with the striking teachers in several states. They’re not very well paid, inflation is creeping up, a lot of classrooms are crowded with kids and lacking in textbooks and supplies, and a number of state and local budgets for school operations are extremely tight and sometimes declining.
Last month I published a five-part critique of a recent AEI paper by Collin Hitt, Michael McShane, and Patrick Wolf that looked at the connection (or lack thereof) between test scores and long-term outcomes in school choice programs.
The K–12 Education Task Force focuses on education policy as it relates to government provision and oversight versus private solutions (both within and outside the public school system) that stress choice, accountability, and transparency.