Education Reform

Too often, the traditional public-school model fails students and teachers. Charter schools, scholarship tax credits, and merit pay are giving students a better education and teachers a better career.

<p>Too often, the traditional public-school model fails students and teachers. Charter schools, scholarship tax credits, and merit pay are giving students a better education and teachers a better career. </p>

America needs to invest more financial resources to help address a looming shortage of college graduates needed for the high-tech economy of tomorrow. Or do we?

Arizona Governor Janet Napolitano, current chair of the National Governors Association, used her 2008 State of the State address to call for doubling the number of college graduates in Arizona by 2020. Napolitano proposed paying the tuition for students who graduate high school with a B average to accomplish this goal.

While its intellectual roots go back a long way, the modern school-choice movement basically began in 1990 with the passage of the first school-voucher law in Milwaukee. The first charter-school law appeared at about that time, too. Eighteen years into the battle for school choice, Sol Sterns new article has set off a firestorm in the education-reform world. He asks: Wheres the beef? Are market-based reforms truly a panacea for our education problems?

Administrators across the state say the school-district-unification plans sent to Gov. Janet Napolitano are not the answer to higher academic results.

The report submitted Friday by the Arizona School District Redistricting Commission would affect more than 330,000 Arizona students.

Twenty-seven districts would replace the existing 76 elementary and high-school districts, eliminating 49 districts of the state's 227.

Washington-A hearing by the U.S. Civil Rights Commission on minority overrepresentation in special education expanded into a three-hour discussion that touched on parental choice, school officials judgment calls on special education placements, and effective early-childhood education.

The commission plans to sift through the interconnected issues raised at the Dec. 3 hearing and make recommendations on the minority-overrepresentation issue, which has vexed educators for years.

On June 11, 2007, the Goldwater Institute published A Test of Credibility: NAEP versus TerraNova Test Score Results in Arizona. Recently, the Arizona Department of Education published a 12-page response.  Here, Dr. Matthew Ladner, Goldwater Institute Vice President of Research and coauthor of A Test of Credibility, discusses the ADEs claims.

Mark Twain once quipped, No mans life, liberty, or property is safe while the legislature is in session. That is often true, but as the lawmaking branch of government, the legislature also has a great capacity to protect life, liberty, and property.

Colleges of Education Not Up to Snuff

The Citizen's Monday editorial ("Achievement, income linked") was both on and off the mark.

The editorial states, "Public schools serving high-income families perform very well. Schools serving poor families tend to founder."

A settlement has been announced of the lawsuit brought by the Goldwater Institute on behalf of five charter schools against Superintendent Tom Horne, the State Board, and the State Board for Charter Schools.  The parties have agreed on the wording of this press release and will not comment further.

1. The plaintiff schools are excellent schools and in particular provide a high-quality Social Studies curriculum.

Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Horne is all over the media defending the curriculum regulations that are the object of a lawsuit by five high-performing public charter schools. It turns out he can only defend the rules by flagrantly misrepresenting them.

Charter schools are given freedom to pursue innovative educational approaches, and in turn are held to high performance standards. The results are impressive: Even though charters constitute only one in 10 Arizona public schools, six of the state's 10 highest-performing schools are charter schools.