The party platform that Democrats adopted over the weekend in Pittsburgh borrows straight from the Barack Obama playbook, especially when it comes to education. The platform, which is meant to detail the party's policy positions (but is often forgotten soon after the convention), will be formally approved by delegates to the Democratic National Convention in Denver later this month. In writing this blog item, I'm working off the draft that was being considered by the platform committee. A spokeswoman for the Democratic National Committee told me in an e-mail today that they don't have the final, electronic version of the ...


There have been a number of names floated around the edublogs as possible Secretary of Education under a potential Obama administration, including former Govs. Roy Romer of Colorado and Jim Hunt of North Carolina. Another name is Linda Darling-Hammond, who has been advising the Obama campaign. And some folks have also mentioned Andrew J. Rotherham, co-director of Education Sector. (I would miss his blog if he got the nod). But it's also possible that if he wins, Sen. Barack Obama, the presumptive Democratic nominee, would look no farther than his own home state of Illinois - at Chicago public schools ...


USA Today editorial writer Richard Whitmire makes that case in an EdWeek commentary you can read here. The gist of Whitmire's piece? John McCain will do more to gut NCLB then will Barack Obama. What do you think? Flypaper thinks his idea isn't so far-fetched. This Week in Education thinks it's true. I'll weigh in on one minor point. Whitmire says that teachers' unions don't need to worry about McCain's support of school choice because vouchers are dead. "Period," he writes. While the idea of federally funded vouchers may be dead, for now, I do think it's too early to ...


From guest blogger Mary Ann Zehr. Ohio’s governor Ted Strickland accompanied presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Barack Obama yesterday on a campaign visit to Austintown Fitch High School in Youngstown, Ohio. Though the two Democratic politicians didn't talk much about K-12 education, despite the setting, “we did talk about the cost of higher education,” the governor told me in a phone interview. But at Obama's town meeting at the high school, one member of the audience asked him why the federal government hasn’t become more involved in primary and secondary schools, the governor said. “He answered correctly,” in the ...


Sen. John McCain of Arizona wrote an editorial on education, published in the New York Daily News on Sunday. There isn't much in there that's new - in fact, a lot of the text is excerpted from his speech in which he endorsed the statement. Unsurprisingly, he reiterated his challenge to his Democratic rival, Sen. Barack Obama of Illinois, to sign-on to the Education Equality Project's statement. The editorial itself isn't as interesting as the fact that the McCain campaign is willing to give that much ink to education - an issue McCain hasn't seemed particularly passionate about. Also on ...


...from American Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten. I think it goes without saying that she doesn't like it. I can practically hear the sarcasm when she refers to Mayor Bloomberg and Chancellor Klein as McCain's "new best friends." Read Alyson's detailed post about what sparked Weingarten's reaction—McCain's endorsement of the Education Equality Project and his criticism of Obama—here....


Presumptive Republican nominee Sen. John McCain of Arizona today said in a speech to the National Urban League that he would add his name to a statement of principles for education put forth last month by the Education Equality Project. The group, which includes some big name district superintendents, released a statement in June intended to influence the presidential campaigns. It contends that schools need to be held primarily responsible for improving student achievement and that educators must be willing to embrace changes in the way schools are structured in order to bring about improvement, according to this story, by ...


It looks like rising energy costs are going to put a major strain on school districts this fall, according to this USA Today story: Fuel and energy costs are rising so quickly for the USA's public school districts that nearly one in seven is considering cutting back to four-day weeks this fall. One in four is considering limits on athletics and other extracurricular activities, and nearly one in three is eliminating teaching jobs Education Week's Katie Ash also wrote about the issue earlier this month. This might become an issue on the campaign trail, at least for congressional candidates. As ...


Alexander Russo heard that Marc Dean Millot is advising, in some capacity, the McCain campaign. And, indeed, it's true! But the edbizbuzz blogger is not spilling the beans on what he's been asked about, or what he told McCain's folks. (UPDATE: Read Millot's own blog post about his advising.) Here's what Millot said in an email to me when I asked him about his role with the McCain campaign: I want to be polite, but direct: I'm not planning to discuss anything about my input or advice with anyone outside the campaign, on or off the record. I am hardly ...


Could there be an entire presidential debate focused on education? Maybe, if the Business Coalition for Student Achievement gets its way. The group, which includes some major business organizations, such as the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, big names in the philanthropy world, such as the Broad Foundation, and corporations including Microsoft, sent a letter last week to both campaigns asking for an "event, town hall meeting, or debate" on education. It seems like a longshot. Even during the primary season, when it felt like the presidential candidates were holding a debate roughly every 10 minutes, education policy watchers felt ...


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