The Education Gadfly The Education Gadfly A Bulletin of Weekly News and Analysis from the Thomas B. Fordham Institute
Volume 11, Number 44. November 10, 2011.
In This Edition
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Opinion and Analysis

You’d be crazy to see SB5’s defeat as rejection of Ohio school reform
A vote of support for first responders
Opinion | Terry Ryan

We have a parenting problem, not a poverty problem
M is for marriage
Opinion | Michael J. Petrilli

Challenging all students: What a radical idea!
Common sense makes a comeback
News Analysis

Killing online learning with kindness
Idaho’s mandate gets it backwards
News Analysis

Short Reviews

Charter-School Management Organizations: Diverse Strategies and Diverse Student Impacts
New study explains the “what” and “how” but not the “who”
Review | Laura Johnson

High-Stakes Reform: The Politics of Educational Accountability
Centralization leads to politicization
Review | Michael Ishimoto

From The Web

This soapbox has a great view
Repeals, mandates, and the goals of gifted programs
Education Gadfly Show Podcast | Hosts: Mike Petrilli and Janie Scull

The secret to good parenting? Good schools.
Talk about parenting after we get the buses to run on time
Flypaper's Finest | November 8, 2011 | Peter Meyer

Tennessee’s report card on teacher-prep programs even cooler than TFA results
Step one: Collect data
Flypaper's Finest | November 8, 2011 | Jamie Davies O'Leary

Extras

Lucky number 13
And 41 percent
Briefly Noted

What’s next for education reform?
Find out at our December 1 conference
Announcement

Be a school-choice czar
Join us December 7 for an event on charter incubators
Announcement

A key to scaling quality charters?
Colorado needs a new director of school choice
Announcement

Choosy reformers choose choice
D.C. parents—check them out
Announcement

Getting down to BASIS
D.C. parents—check them out
Announcement

After the Budget, What Next? Ohio’s Education Policy Priorities 
Time to take stock
Featured Fordham Publication

Opinion and News Analysis

Opinion: You’d be crazy to see SB5’s defeat as rejection of Ohio school reform
By Terry Ryan

Ohio’s electorate soundly rejected Issue 2 (the referendum on Senate Bill 5) on Tuesday. As almost everyone knows, that statute made significant changes to collective bargaining for public employees in the Buckeye State. The most controversial bits included changes to binding arbitration (to give management the right to impose its last best offer), a ban on strikes by public employees, and elimination of seniority as the sole factor for determining who should be laid off when cutbacks are necessary.

Though teachers and their unions were most definitely included—both in Senate Bill 5 and in the frantic, well-funded ($30 million) effort to persuade voters to repudiate it—education-policy watchers outside Ohio may not appreciate the extent to which this was really a referendum on policemen, firemen, and other “first responders” in the public sector. They and their unions were covered by the measure, too, and played the lead role—and by far the most visible role—in the campaign to undo it. There is, in fact, every reason to believe that if the first responders hadn’t been involved, Senate Bill 5 would have survived Election Day.

On the same ballot, Ohio voters repudiated Republican plans to restructure collective bargaining in the Buckeye State and the big plans of Beltway Democrats to reshape the nation’s healthcare system.

 
   
 

At their raucous victory party on Tuesday night, union leaders said the vote should send a clear message to Governor Kasich and GOP legislative leaders. “Their biggest mistake was to think they (Republicans) could come up with a solution and impose it on a bunch of people,” said Bill Leibensperger, vice president of the Ohio Education Association. He continued, “There has always been room to talk. That’s what collective bargaining is about. You bring adults around a table to talk about serious issues.”

He was half right. Ohio’s voters indeed rejected what they were persuaded was a Republican over-reach to reshape state and local government and how it deals with its employees. The same day, however, and by an even greater (2 to 1) margin, Ohioans spurned key pieces of President Obama’s Affordable Care Act. Supporters of that ballot item boasted that, “Today, Ohio voters sent a clear message to President Obama… We reject the mandates of ‘Obamacare.’”

In sum, on the same ballot, Ohio voters repudiated GOP plans to restructure collective bargaining in the Buckeye State and the big plans of Beltway Democrats to reshape the nation’s healthcare system. So what lesson should politicians and policymakers draw?


tea leaves photo

There's much to read in SB5's tea leaves.
Photo by John Tann

Ohioans—like Americans generally—are largely centrist in their politics. (That’s why it’s been a key swing state in so many national elections. Remember “As Ohio goes, so goes the nation”?) The political extremes on both sides are loud and polarizing, of course, yet most state voters are moderates open to compromise. They don’t like one-party solutions and are skeptical of big fixes, wherever they originate. Lasting change and real reform in a state like Ohio requires some level of bipartisan support and collaboration.

What does this mean for education reform? Do we now face a period of political paralysis in Ohio (and beyond) where nothing can be changed even when change is needed? Will elected officials be so shell-shocked by this particular electoral pounding that they will simply nibble on the margins of reform—and attempt to make nice to the unions that trounced them?

That would be a terrible mistake. Surveys have consistently shown that Ohioans support bona fide school-reform efforts, and many of the other education changes that were tucked into the 300 pages of Senate Bill 5 had and still have the support of voters. These include:

  • Creating a salary structure free of automatic step increases;
  • Requiring performance-based pay for teachers and nonteaching school employees;
  • Limiting public employer contributions toward health care benefit costs;
  • Requiring annual evaluations of teachers to include student performance data; and
  • Requiring that any lay-offs be based in part on these evaluations.

The Fordham Institute polled Ohioans on education issues in 2005, 2007, and 2009 and in every one of these surveys Buckeye residents said they prefer to pay teachers according to their “performance and how effectively they teach” rather than compensate them for “years of service and degrees earned.” In 2009, the margin was a striking 69 to 15 percent. Further, an overwhelming 87 percent favored “giving local public schools more freedom to fire teachers that aren’t performing,” while only 11 percent opposed such a measure.

In case you don’t like Fordham data, Quinnipiac reported two weeks ago that Ohioans supported (49 to 40 percent) the provision in Senate Bill 5 that pay increases for public-sector employees (including teachers) should be based on merit rather than seniority. And again, as Ohio goes, so goes the nation. Recent national polls show Americans overall support merit pay and tying tenure to performance. An Education Next survey earlier this year found that “those who say tenure should be based on academic progress increased from 49 percent to 55 percent between 2010 and 2011.”

Nor does the economic imperative to do more with less go away with this week’s vote. Budgets are tight. Revenues are down. Taxpayers are stressed, not least because so many of them lack jobs. (Ohio’s unemployment rate is 9.1 percent and it has lost 400,000 jobs over the past five years.) It was this basic reality that mobilized Republicans to pursue the changes wrought by Senate Bill 5 in the first place: They would save a lot of money that the state and its school systems don’t have.

University of Arkansas economist Robert Costrell captured the profound challenges still confronting Ohio when he wrote of this week’s vote:

The core fiscal issues that motivated SB5 remain unsolved for school districts. SB5 was a very broad bill, which contributed to its defeat, but specific provisions are quite important for keeping school district costs under control. There were two particularly important provisions regarding health insurance. First, the law capped district contributions at 85 percent, so that teachers would have to pay 15 percent. By comparison, the collective bargaining agreement for Cleveland sets the employee share of premiums at about five percent. Second, and perhaps even more important, the law gave districts the ability to set plan design, subject to best practices established by a state board. Currently collective bargaining agreements establish which plans will be offered, what the deductibles and co-insurance rates are, etc. In Cleveland, for example, there are no deductibles at all for in-network coverage, nor is there any co-insurance. This is quite astounding—well below industry standards, even for generous plans, like those we find in public universities. These provisions are written into the union contract. They will be very difficult to remove, under current bargaining law, which leaves school districts at a great disadvantage at the bargaining table. So districts like Cleveland will continue to face huge budget difficulties, now and in the future. The defeat of SB5 will mean layoffs and other education cuts, unless these provisions are re-enacted separately.

Senate Bill 5 is now dead, but the underlying problems facing Ohio schools and budgets remain. To make any progress, bold changes are needed in education and other parts of the public sector. But as Philip Howard perceptively noted in yesterday’s Wall Street Journal, across the entirety of the public sector the unions are still powerful obstacles to needed change.

This piece was originally published (in a slightly different form) on Fordham’s Flypaper blog. To subscribe to Flypaper, click here.

Click to play

Click to listen to commentary on the repeal of SB5 from the Education Gadfly Show podcast.

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Opinion: We have a parenting problem, not a poverty problem
By Michael J. Petrilli

In kicking off Education Trust’s annual conference, Kati Haycock said that we can’t let “bad parenting” be an excuse for poor educational results. She’s absolutely right, of course. It’s not like our schools are running on all cylinders (especially schools serving poor kids), and if only parents were doing their jobs too, achievement would soar. Sure, we’ve got several examples of school models that are making a tremendous difference in educational outcomes for kids, regardless of what’s happening at home.

That said, it strikes me as highly unlikely that we’re ever going to significantly narrow the achievement gap between rich and poor unless we narrow the “good parenting gap” between rich and poor families, too. (And yes, I know I’m going to catch a lot of grief for saying that.)

We're never going to significantly narrow the achievement gap between rich and poor unless we narrow the 'good parenting gap' between rich and poor families, too.

 
   
 

Let’s admit it: The Broader/Bolder types are right when they say that a lot of what influences student achievement happens outside of schools and before kids ever set foot in a Kindergarten classroom. Where they are wrong, I believe, is in thinking that turbo-charged government programs can compensate for the real challenge: what’s happening (or not) inside the home.

Conservatives used to talk about this, but for whatever reason they’ve been awfully silent lately. Perhaps that’s starting to change. A new book by Minnesota think tanker Mitch Pearlstein addresses the issue head on. And last week, in the Washington Post, compassionate conservative Michael Gerson argued that issues like divorce and teenage pregnancies are what are dampening social mobility.

So let’s get specific: What can parents do to increase the chances of their children doing well in school? Let’s just start with the zero-to-five years.

  1. Wait until you’ve graduated from high school and you’re married to have children.
  2. Stay married.
  3. Don’t drink or smoke when you’re pregnant.
  4. Get regular prenatal check-ups.
  5. Nurse your baby instead of using a bottle.
  6. Talk and sing to your baby a lot.
  7. As you child grows, be firm but loving.
  8. Limit TV-watching, especially in the early years.
  9. Spark your child’s curiosity by taking field trips to parks, museums, nature centers, etc.
  10. Read, baby, read.

For virtually all of these items, we’ve got evidence that affluent parents are much more likely to engage in these behaviors than poor parents. And what makes it easier for affluent parents to do these things mostly isn’t about money (more on that below) but marriage: Getting hitched and staying that way. It’s a heckuva lot harder (though not impossible, of course) to be a great parent when you’re doing the job alone than when you’ve got a partner. And in case you haven’t noticed, out-of-wedlock pregnancy rates and divorce rates have reached catastrophic levels for the poor and the working class—but not for the most affluent and well-educated among us.


staircase going up photo

The first step is admitting there's a problem.
Photo by Erich Ferdinand

As mentioned above, the Left’s answer to this challenge is a panoply of social programs. Home visits for pregnant women. Community-health centers. Head Start. I’ve got no complaints with these, especially if they can show evidence of working.

But we’re still dancing around the issue if we don’t address the family directly. Imagine we could convince most poor teenagers—whether they are black, white, or Hispanic—to save child-rearing for their 20s, and to get and stay married first. Getting them to adopt healthy parenting behaviors, then, would be much more doable, even on a limited budget. (See the innovative work that GreatSchools.net is doing on this front.) You don’t have to be Richy Rich to nurse your baby, or sing to her, or learn how to be loving but firm. Sure, a few of these items are easier with money. (I imagine that low-income families use TV as a babysitter more because they can’t afford alternative childcare.) But mostly these take commitment, discipline, and practice.

So how do we spark a marriage renaissance, especially for poor and working-class families?

Honestly, I don’t have a clue. Some argue for family-friendly tax incentives; others think a religious revival is what’s needed. I would vote for middle schools and high schools that are unafraid to preach a pro-marriage, wait-till-you’re-older-to-have-babies message—neo-paternalistic charter schools or religious schools in particular. In other words, this is another strong argument for school choice.

Whatever the solutions, let’s at least start talking about the problem. Pat Moynihan tried to warn us long ago that our national experiment with large-scale single parenthood would turn out badly. He was right, and then some. Let’s not wait any longer to do something about it.

This piece was originally published (in a slightly different form) on Fordham’s Flypaper blog. To subscribe to Flypaper, click here.

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News Analysis: Challenging all students: What a radical idea!

For decades, college admissions officers have sought to re-engineer the demographics of their campuses—an understandable impulse with all manner of perverse consequences. Not surprisingly, this dubious idea has filtered down to the K-12 system, too. Districts, like the one in Alexandria, VA, are revamping entrance requirements for their gifted-education programs in an effort to boost minority enrollment. (In Alexandria, 34 percent of the students are black and 31 percent are Hispanic—yet, in the city’s gifted program, those percentages drop to 17 and 11, respectively.) Gadfly welcomes efforts to improve outreach and strengthen kids’ preparation: Qualified and capable students of color won’t enroll in gifted-education programs of which they aren’t aware. But slackening the criteria for program entry is something else entirely. As with AP classes, rigorous entrance requirements for gifted programs are necessary if high-achieving students (whatever their race) are to get much out of them. Simply put, our education system must work to the advantage of all its students—from those scoring in the top decile to those in the bottom. Districts should try this “radical” concept instead: Group students by academic prowess, and meet the needs of all pupils. Let common sense prevail!

Click to play

Click to listen to commentary on gifted programs and tracking from the Education Gadfly Show podcast.

Washington-area schools confront the ‘gifted gap,’” by Kevin Sieff, The Washington Post, November 6, 2011.

Reynoldsburg middle school excels after ‘radical’ move to group kids based on academic performance,” by Charlie Boss, The Columbus Dispatch, November 6, 2011.

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News Analysis: Killing online learning with kindness


eat your vegetables photo

You will take your online class. And you'll like it.
Photo by Justus Hayes

Over the past few months, crusading Idaho state supe Tom Luna has shepherded a flock of forward-thinking and cost-saving reforms—including adoption of merit pay and a rollback of tenure and collective-bargaining rights. Yet amid Luna’s bold reforms hides one black sheep. If legislators agree in January, Idaho will become the first state to mandate that all high schoolers take at least two courses online. (Currently, Michigan and Alabama require students to each take one online course.) Further, one of these classes must be “asynchronous”—think more “correspondence course” and less “virtual classroom.” Gadfly is a firm believer in the potential of digital learning to expand the reach of fantastic teachers, to individualize instruction, and to allow for more choice in public education. But the goal should be to expand access to digital learning, not to require kids to engage in it against their will. Supporters of such mandates often claim that learning how to take an online course is itself a critical skill to build. But if the courses are well-designed (like, say, your iPhone), mastering the experience should be a no-brainer. Luna might want to put the sheers to this particular idea.

Click to play

Click to listen to commentary on Idaho's online-learning mandate from the Education Gadfly Show podcast.

Idaho works to carry out online class requirement,” by Jessie L. Bonner, Business Week, November 7, 2011.

Giving Every Student a Digital Learning Experience,” by Jeb Bush, Education Next, November 8, 2011.

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Short Reviews

Review: Charter-School Management Organizations: Diverse Strategies and Diverse Student Impacts
By Laura Johnson

Charter-School Management Organizations coverIf CRPE’s recent meta-analysis of charter-school research was an amuse-bouche, this report (from Mathematica/CRPE) on the practices and impacts of charter-management organizations (CMOs) acts as the entrée—and perhaps also the dessert. It exhaustively details the characteristics of forty CMOs (of the nation’s 130, which serve 17 percent of charter-school students), noting some interesting commonalities: Compared to their district counterparts, CMOs typically run smaller schools (with smaller classes). They also offer more time in learning: Forty percent of studied CMOs provided their students with more instructional time than all of the nation’s traditional public schools. Completing the meal, the report analyzed student-achievement results for those CMOs with adequate data. Echoing previous charter research, the report finds that CMO performance varies—and widely. Of the twenty-two networks analyzed, eleven boast significantly positive impacts in math, while ten can make that claim in reading—this compared to a representative control group of district pupils. (Seven negatively impact their students in math, six in reading.) Why do some CMOs do so well while others flounder? Researchers note two reasons for success: intense teacher coaching and school-wide behavior standards (notably those that offered consistent rewards and sanctions and asked for parent and student contracts). Unfortunately, the authors stop there. No after-dinner coffee or digestif. Because of promises of confidentiality, the report names neither the high-flyers nor the low-performers. Interesting data, yes, but not much help to school shoppers or communities seeking effective CMO’s to run more of their schools. Though a palatable and hearty meal, the report could have used that added bit to settle the reader’s stomach.

Click to play

Click to listen to commentary on this CRPE/Mathematica study from the Education Gadfly Show podcast.

Melissa Bowen, et al., Charter-School Management Organizations: Diverse Strategies and Diverse Student Impacts. (Princeton, NJ: Mathematica Policy Research; Seattle, WA: Center on Reinventing Public Education, 2011).

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Review: High-Stakes Reform: The Politics of Educational Accountability
By Michael Ishimoto

High Stakes Accountability coverIn her new book, Kathryn A. McDermott of the University of Massachusetts tackles the complicated theory and history of educational accountability. According to McDermott, our increasingly centralized system has been shaped by the push for educational equality, going back to desegregation and continuing with performance-based accountability today. To make her case, McDermott showcases the rise of accountability structures in Connecticut, Massachusetts, and New Jersey, and the growth in federal involvement. Perhaps most interesting are the lessons McDermott draws from these case studies—relevant to other public-policy sectors as well. Notably, to design a smart accountability system, policymakers must first ensure that they have the capacity to operate it. Else accountability creates perverse incentives (like cheating on high-stakes testing). As federal policymakers contemplate handing accountability back to the states, it will be smart to remember whence and why our current model originated. This book shines a light onto that past.

Kathryn A. McDermott. High-Stakes Reform: The Politics of Educational Accountability, (Georgetown University Press, Washington, D.C., 2011).

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From The Web

The Education Gadfly Show Podcast: This soapbox has a great view

Mike and Janie bite off big topics in this week’s podcast—from the repeal of SB5 to racial imbalances in gifted-ed programs to online learning. Amber wants CRPE to name names and Chris starts subbing for the pension benefits. You’re gonna want to sit down for this.

The Education Gadfly
Click to listen to the podcast on our website. You can also download the podcast here or subscribe on iTunes here.

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Flypaper's Finest: The secret to good parenting? Good schools.
By Peter Meyer

I’m not so sure Mike is right that “we have a parenting problem, not a poverty problem,” and I’m even less sure that he is right that educators should “start talking about the problem.”

I know this may sound heretical, since anyone who has spent more than a minute in an inner city school or neighborhood (see my Ed Next story on two Chicago charters) knows the intensity of the social dysfunction—and no school is immune to its effects. But parenting is not a problem that educators are equipped to handle—they have a hard enough time agreeing on curriculum.…

The Education Gadfly
Click to read the rest on Flypaper.

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Flypaper's Finest: Tennessee’s report card on teacher-prep programs even cooler than TFA results
By Jamie Davies O’Leary

A new report from Tennessee’s Higher Education Commission shows that Teach For America teachers outperformed traditionally trained teachers (regardless of experience level) in reading, science, and social studies. Tennessee’s report card on teacher preparation (which results from a 2007 legislative mandate not unlike Ohio’s new requirement to track the effectiveness of teacher preparation programs) examined twenty-one different programs, only five of which were “alternative providers.” (Note: This isn’t the first such analysis showing that TFA-prepared teachers outscore traditionally-trained peers.)

But the fact that TFA teachers outshined other teachers is actually the less interesting/relevant part of these data.…

The Education Gadfly
Click to read the rest on Flypaper.

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Extras

Briefly Noted: Lucky number 13

  • To avoid a court injunction, Chicago mayor Rahm Emanuel has pulled back the reins in his plan to lengthen the school day in the Windy City. The thirteen schools that have already agreed (thanks to a monetary incentive) to up their school day by ninety minutes will keep their current bargain. But no other schools will be able to join that group. Just one more example of politics taking precedence over children.
  • Courtesy of the Center on Education Reform’s new district survey, we learn that half of districts eligible for school-improvement grants find it “inappropriate” to ask a district to turnaround a failing school in three years. Of course this begs the question: What is an appropriate amount of time? Five years? Ten? Closing these schools may yet be the better option.
  • Charter-school enrollment in D.C. leaped 9 percentage points over the past year—nudging District charters up to 41 percent market share. If current trends continue, D.C. will be a majority-charter city within two to three years.
  • Other cities might be wise to emulate this charter trend in D.C.: NAEP results show that students in charter schools made greater gains from 2009-2011 than their district-school peers in fourth- and eighth-grade reading and math. What’s more, poor and minority students saw the most dramatic score hikes.
  • Overheard on Capitol Hill: “Why did the U.S. Department of Education propose the creation of an Office of Early Learning?” “To administer the early-education Race to the Top grants.” “But, why did the USDOE create this third round of RTTT in the first place?” “To give the proposed Office of Early Learning something to administer, of course.”
  • Everyone’s favorite drama-filled school district is back in the headlines this week. After a run-off election on Tuesday, Democrats retrieved control of the Wake County School Board, 5-4. What this means for the district’s new school-placement plan is anyone’s guess.
  • Fairfax County, VA saw voter turnout tick up over 30 percent for this off-cycle election, higher than other counties in The Old Dominion. What’s promising is the why: According to exit polls, the school-board race (typically a snoozer) drove people to the poles. With six new Democratically leaning board members (and a supe exiting in July 2013), keep an eye on Fairfax’s doings.
  • And then there were forty-seven: Montana joined the ranks of Common Core adopters this week.

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Announcement: What’s next for education reform?

Policy-oriented reforms (from standards to school choice) too-often fail to gain traction in our deep mud pit of an education-governance structure. For them to take hold, we need to change not just certain policies, but the fundamental way in which education is controlled. To hash out these changes, Fordham and the Center for American Progress have assembled leading minds from the policy and academic worlds. Join us for the all-day conference on December 1 and start thinking outside the box. (We’re springing for lunch, too!) For a full schedule and list of panelists, and to register, click here.

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Announcement: Be a school-choice czar

Part blogger, part spokesperson, part wonk—Fordham is on the hunt for a director of our parental-choice program. If you’re a fantastic writer and savvy researcher with a passion for school choice, go ahead, live the dream. Come work for Fordham. Read the full job description here.

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Announcement: A key to scaling quality charters

For years, reformers have struggled with how to unlock quality, en masse, in the charter sector. Do charter-school incubators hold the key? Join Fordham and the Cities for Education Entrepreneurship Trust on December 7 from 3:30 to 5:00PM to find out. The conversation will start with an analysis of key findings from a new Public Impact policy brief—but it will quickly progress from there. To learn more about the event, or to register, click here.

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Announcement: Choosy reformers choose choice

As if the majestic Rockies weren’t enough to draw you in, Colorado has emerged as a hotbed of education reform over the past two years. Now it’s your chance to get in on that action. The state’s Department of Education is searching for a director of their school-choice department. For those with experience in budgeting, proposal development and management who are interested in applying, the full job description can be found here.

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Announcement: Getting back to BASIS

BASIS Schools Inc.—which focuses on a rigorous college-prep curriculum for all and boasts some impressive student-achievement results—is opening a new campus in the District of Columbia. Parents looking to learn more about this new school venture, come to Fordham on November 16 from 12:00 to 1:30PM: BASIS will be hosting a brown-bag-lunch information session. Register here. Can’t make it but still interested? Find another information session that suites you, or learn more about the program at BasisDC.org.

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Featured Fordham Publication: After the Budget, What Next? Ohio’s Education Policy Priorities

After the Budget, What Next?

The debates surrounding Ohio’s biennial budget and other education-related legislation during the first half of 2011 were intense, and it’s no wonder. The state started the year facing an historic deficit, federal stimulus money was vanishing, and school districts were preparing for draconian cuts. Meanwhile, despite decades of effort, Ohio’s academic performance has remained largely stagnant. Achievement gaps continue to yawn. To this landscape came Governor Kasich’s budget plan (House Bill 153), which included dozens of education-policy changes, signed into law on June 30. In light of the repeal of SB5, it’s time to take stock. To what extent have Ohio’s leaders met the challenges and opportunities before them in K-12 education? What needs to happen next? Read on to learn more.

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The Education Gadfly is published weekly (ordinarily on Thursdays), with occasional breaks, by the Thomas B. Fordham Institute. Regular contributors include Tyson Eberhardt, Daniela Fairchild, Chester E. Finn, Jr., Chris Irvine, Michael Ishimoto, Laura Johnson, Matthew C. Kyle, Jamie Davies O’Leary, Emmy Partin, Michael J. Petrilli, Terry Ryan, Janie Scull, Bianca Speranza, Chris Tessone, and Amber Winkler. Have something to say? Email us at thegadfly@edexcellence.net. Find archived issues or other reviews of reports and books here.

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The Thomas B. Fordham Institute is a nonprofit organization that conducts research, issues publications, and directs action projects in elementary and secondary education reform at the national level and in Ohio, with a special emphasis on our hometown of Dayton. (For Ohio news, check out our Ohio Education Gadfly, published bi-weekly, ordinarily on Wednesdays.) The Institute is neither connected with nor sponsored by Fordham University.

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