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5 From 1: State Education Policy Organizations

My top five press releases from June's School Improvement Industry Announcements – State Education Policy Organizations

All public education policy does not emanate from Washington. This is not only a function of funding and the Tenth Amendment. It also follows from the fact that - aside from the children of American Indians and military personnel - the federal government runs no schools.

More often than not, school reform initiatives have started in state legislatures and worked their way across the nation. Problems are felt at the state-level first, and the pressure to act is strongest in state capitals. Federal policy generally reflects consensus among the states more than leadership from inside the Beltway.

How to keep track of education policy’s beading edge? School Improvement Industry Announcements – State Education Policy Organizations monitors some 100 state-level policy organizations. Starting today, I’ll be offering my top five announcements from each monthly issue.

My criteria for selection will be information and insights useful for those interested in school improvement, and especially school improvement providers seeking inexpensive market research.

• The Public Policy Institute of California surveys computer and internet use cross the state. Among other things while over 80 percent of parents with household incomes of over $80,000 use the internet to access their children’s schools, that’s true of just 30 percent of parents making under 40,000.

• The Utah Foundation released a 20-year assessment of the state budget, comparing it with national trends.

• The Nevada Policy Research Institute describes school boards a “century-old scheme to disempower parents” in the Nevada Business Journal.

• Public Opinion Survey on K-12 published by Oklahoma Council of Public Affairs.

Georgia Public Policy Foundation releases 2008 Report Cards for Parent.

Marc Dean Millot is the editor of School Improvement Industry Week and K-12 Leads and Youth Service Markets Report. His firm provides independent information and advisory services to business, government and research organizations in public education.

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