Wednesday, September 23, 2009


I wuz right

When I was in grad school, my course of study required me to take a couple of undergrad-level "education" classes. The first class was Education 101 (literally), and the instructor was a local high school principal. For my first assignment in said class, I had to write a paper on, and give a presentation 'bout, a contemporary educational issue.

In my paper, and during my presentation, I argued for more charter schools and more "school choice" in the United States. I provided data in both to show that students in charter school and choice programs were outperforming their public school peers.

I got an "A" on my paper, but my instructer -- a self-proclaimed member of the Tennessee Education Association -- wrote this in BIG red letters across the top of said paper: "Many people disagree with you." Note that she didn't take issue with the data I presented; she just said that many "people" (i.e., unionists and Democrats) disagreed with me.

Fast forward hmpfff years and, well, my thesis is stronger than ever. When it comes to providing a quality education, charter schools rule! To wit:

Students who entered lotteries and won spots in New York City charter schools performed better on state exams than students who entered the same lotteries but did not secure charter school seats, according to a study by a Stanford University economist being released Tuesday.

What's that say about the quality of NYC's public schools, or public schools in general? Perhaps a grad student somewhere will do a study.

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