Take a minute to read Greg Anrig's comment that further explains his reasoning that conservatives have abandoned the voucher movement. He responded to a blog item I did questioning his recent article in the Washington Monthly. Anrig makes a good argument. But I still think that while conservatives may have abandoned economist Milton Friedman's idea for vouchers from a strict interpretation standpoint, they've merely shifted their political strategies and are trying to accomplish the same thing without calling it "vouchers." Checker Finn weighs in with a similar argument here, saying that Anrig has been "overhasty" and that "choice is winning." ...


The Century Foundation's Greg Anrig penned a piece in Washington Monthly recently titled: "An Idea Whose Time Has Gone". And the subheadline reads: "Conservatives abandon their support for school vouchers." If you can't figure it out from the headline, the gist is that the voucher movement is dead or dying, and conservatives have given up hope. While vouchers aren't explicitly campaign related, the issue is volatile and polarizing enough that it often crops up in state and local races—and even Barack Obama has mentioned the "V" word before. And while I don't want to argue the merits of vouchers ...


A few weeks ago, I profiled the efforts of Brian Griffin, a campaign intern for Sen. Barack Obama of Illinois, and other high-schoolers who lent a hand to one of the two Democrats vying in yesterday’s closely watched Indiana presidential primary. Griffin saw the victory by Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton of New York in a broad context. “It was upsetting that we worked so hard here and we didn’t actually see the percentages being higher,” he said, referring to the roughly 2-point margin over Obama. But he added, “You can’t get too upset when you see that ...


Now that Obama seems poised to wrap up the Democratic nomination with a victory in North Carolina and a narrow miss in Indiana, the pundits are starting to examine where Obama goes now. And if he wants to win, that means Obama needs to start pivoting to the center, some say. Fordham's Mike Petrilli writes on Flypaper about what that could mean for his education policy stances. As a personal aside, I have to say that I was surprised that Obama did as well as he did in Indiana. I was expecting Hillary Clinton to more soundly beat him, and ...


Sen. John McCain of Arizona, the presumptive Republican presidential nominee, gave a speech today at Wake Forest University designed to outline his judicial views in which he cited a famous legal challenge to the recitation of the Pledge of Allegiance in schools. The campaign put out this press release, as well as the text of his remarks. He says that if given the opportunity, he will appoint U.S. Supreme Court justices in the mold of Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. and Justice Samuel A. Alito Jr. McCain cited cases in which he thinks courts have run amok by ...


Today, voters from my home state go to the polls to decide whether they want Democrats Hillary Clinton or Barack Obama to head the 2008 presidential ticket. But as the two were canvassing the state, scouring for votes, something election-related happened over the weekend that could have an even bigger impact on education in the Hoosier State: Veteran Superintendent of Public Instruction Suellen Reed, who has been the state's education leader for 16 years, announced she won't run for re-election. During my years covering education in Indiana, I got to know Reed—even visiting her farm in rural Indiana, where ...


Reporting on the presidential race, I've focused a lot on the major issues - No Child Left Behind, merit pay, school choice - but the next president will have a significant say in some other issues, such as whether the federal government should help school districts invest in environmentally friendly, or "green," schools. This past Wednesday, the House Education and Labor Committee passed a bill - on a more or less party-line vote - that would authorize about $6.4 billion a year to help districts construct "green schools." Republicans argued that financing school construction is a local responsibility and ...


This dispatch comes from my colleague Lesli Maxwell, who has done a fabulous job covering recovery and reform efforts in New Orleans' public schools in the wake of Hurricane Katrina. As part of this special project, she's spent nearly nine weeks in the city on several different trips, getting to know the students, teachers, and the man who is running the schools of New Orleans. Now that the Chicago media have reported that Paul Vallas, superintendent of the Recovery School District in New Orleans, is “open to running again” for governor in his home state of Illinois, there will be ...


If Democrats Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton weren't in a fierce political battle for their party's nomination, then students like Brian Griffin and Kaci Gardner probably wouldn't have gotten so involved in the campaign. Growing up in a state like Indiana—as I did—you realize that presidential candidates don't pay much attention to you when your electoral votes are a foregone conclusion. (I think Indiana's electoral votes—there are 12 now—have gone to the Republican nominee since the dawn of time.) Of course, it was mildly exciting when Indiana provided George H.W. Bush with his vice president. (That...


While the Democratic candidates are still trying to close the deal on the nomination, presumptive Republican presidential nominee, Sen. John McCain of Arizona, is out showing his softer side by doing a tour of "forgotten places" in America - some of which just happen to be in potential swing states such as Ohio, Kentucky, and Arkansas. He wrapped up the tour last Friday in Arkansas, meeting with college students who've participated in the Our Kids Program, a mentoring program which helps provide positive role models for young black males - a pretty education-focused event, at least for McCain. And he ...


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