Platform Overview: CER’s Review of 2016 Party Positions

The Center for Education Reform’s Review of the 2016 Political Party Positions

Today, education reform has become an amorphous term, sounded out by many and used to apply to many things that may not really constitute what ed reform pioneers originally envisioned – a commitment to innovation and opportunity that makes it possible for revolutionary changes to occur that will truly drive results for kids and families. This makes it difficult for citizens to separate the reality from the rhetoric and to determine which candidates and positions actually would result in exceptional opportunities for kids to get the education that best meets their needs.

To that end, the following analysis of the Political Party Platforms of 2016 offers the Center for Education Reform’s non-partisan analysis of how – and if – the positions of political parties in education would address challenges our nation faces in providing increased quality educational opportunities that secure our nation’s freedom and lead to improved economic outcomes for all Americans, particularly our youth.

 

PLATFORM OVERVIEWS:

Democrats believe “good education is a basic right of all Americans, no matter what zip code” they reside. They pledge to end “school-to-prison” pipeline & replace with one from “cradle-to-college” helping each child reach their “God-given potential.” They also promise, as part of an economic renaissance, to focus on “entrepreneurship and innovation” as critical to future economic success. In addition, they tout the need for high-speed internet access as an education requirement.

Specifically the platform has a separate section for Indian Education and promises to fully fund the Bureau of Indian Education, and to recruit & retain high quality teachers to implement culturally appropriate learning for each tribe.

The GOP platform calls for increased partnership with tribal governments to “deliver top-flight education.” Republicans believe getting hard-working Americans back to work unites their entire platform, including their educational commitments.

 

BREAKING DOWN EDUCATION ISSUES:

Coming soon: Issue-by-issue analysis of whether party platform specifics enhance education opportunity and innovation.

Issue Democratic Party GOP Libertarians
Afterschool/ Summer Learning  

Democrats support increased funding for both.

 

n/a n/a
Common Core n/a (though see tests & assessments) The GOP rejects any national standards.

 

n/s
Career & Technical Education Democrats support free community college. The GOP includes CTE & early-college high schools as a form of choice. n/a
Charter Schools
Democrats support “high quality” public charter schools that operate as nonprofits.  However charters shouldn’t replace or destabilize traditional public schools, maintain proportionate numbers of ESL, minorities, and those with disabilities as the traditional public schools do.

 

Finally, they support increasing transparency & accountability for charters.

The GOP supports charters as a form of choice.

 

n/a
Disabilities/IDEA Democrats support increasing resources to students with disabilities. The GOP supports focusing the bulk of Title I funding should follow the child. n/a
Early Childhood Democrats pledge to invest in early childhood.

 

n/a n/a
Federal Role Democrats see a federal role as a necessity. The GOP sees it as without any constitutional role.

Likewise, the GOP opposes unfunded mandates on local schools.

 

n/a
Innovation & Opportunity Democrats pledge to work to “eliminate” opportunity gaps.

 

The GOP platform notes innovation is disruptive and innovators ought have freedom to create, and succeed or fail, on their own merit.

 

The GOP focuses in on innovation by administrators to hold everyone accountable.  In addition it notes a degree from a “bricks & mortar” institution isn’t the only way to a prosperous career, and looks to innovation to create those new opportunities.

 

n/a
Mentoring Democrats believe group mentoring will be a low cost, yet high impact answer to a great need in helping children in poverty to enter the middle class.

 

n/a n/a
Parents n/a The GOP views parents as the primary educator and rejects any state, federal, or international (eg, UN) encroachment on that.

 

 

The Libertarian platform notes “Parents, or other guardians, have the right to raise their children according to their own standards and beliefs” and that “Recognizing that the education of children is a parental responsibility, we would restore authority to parents to determine the education of their children, without interference from government. Parents should have control of and responsibility for all funds expended for their children’s education.”
Testing, Assessments, & Evaluation Democrats believe testing should “inform” but not “drive” curriculum.  It shouldn’t be used to punish or close schools or to rate teachers or principals.

 

They believe parents should have opt-out option for standardized tests.

 

Standardized tests likewise shouldn’t unfairly “label students of color” as failing.

The GOP rejects any national standards and assessments and likewise rejects teaching “to the test but supports strong assessments that help teachers meet student needs.

 

n/a

Uncle Sam’s Overreach on Charter Schools

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CER Submits Comments to Proposed Rulemaking of ESSA to Correct Federal Interference in Charter Schools

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
August 2, 2016

WASHINGTON, DC — In order to protect state laws governing charter schools and charter school freedom from undue interference from the federal government, The Center for Education Reform (CER) has submitted comments in response to the Department of Education’s May 31, 2016, Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) related to accountability and state plans under the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA), as amended by the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA).

“As to be expected when there’s money involved, the US Department of Education is now involved in the over-regulation of charter schools, despite the intended flexibility of the Every Student Succeeds Act,” said Jeanne Allen, Founder and CEO of The Center for Education Reform.

As an organization dedicated to expanding educational opportunities that lead to improved economic outcomes for all Americans, and having contributed significantly to the development of the charter school movement in America, The Center for Education Reform urges the Secretary and his leadership to abandon the approach to over-regulating our nation’s charter schools and respect the intent of Congress in respecting the rights of states to govern their education portfolios as they see fit.

For details regarding the Department’s rulemaking on charter schools, see the Center’s full comment letter here.

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About the Center for Education Reform

Founded in 1993, the Center for Education Reform aims to expand educational opportunities that lead to improved economic outcomes for all Americans — particularly our youth — ensuring that the conditions are ripe for innovation, freedom and flexibility throughout U.S. education.

Florida Teachers of Tomorrow Receives State Approval

Opens New Route to Teacher Certification in Florida

July 27, 2016

Teachers of Tomorrow announced that its educator preparation program has now been fully approved as a route to teacher certification by the Florida Department of Education and the Florida Commission for Independent Education.  The new program, Florida Teachers of Tomorrow (“Florida Teachers”) will immediately begin recruiting and preparing teachers for Florida classrooms.

“We are extremely excited to be approved by the state of Florida to begin helping school districts get the talent they need to ensure every student has a great teacher,” said Vernon Reaser, CEO of Teachers of Tomorrow. “Florida Teachers can help alleviate the critical teacher shortages that Florida school districts are experiencing.”

Teachers of Tomorrow’s Texas Teachers program provided over 6,000 teachers to schools last year creating a more diverse teaching workforce in the state. A recent Teach for America study found that over 46% of teachers prepared by Teachers of Tomorrow were non-white.  The program focuses on high needs area delivering 1796 new Special Education Teachers, 897 science teachers and 852 math teachers since 2014.

The Florida Teachers program is approved as an Educator Preparation Institute or EPI. They are the first private or non-university based program to go through the rigorous approval process and earn approval. The program has already received many new applications in just the first week of operations.

“This is a great testament to the quality of our program and the quality of our team of professionals that ensure each of our teachers are prepared to enter the classroom. This is a great day for Florida schools and for Florida Teachers,” Reaser continued.

Teachers who want to work in Florida Schools can immediately begin the program and prospective teachers can find more information about the program at FloridaTeachers.org

About Teachers of Tomorrow
Teachers of Tomorrow began as Texas Teachers of Tomorrow in 2005 to create a route to teacher certification in Texas so that school districts would have the talent they need to drive student achievement.  Over the last 11 years, Texas Teachers has certified over 36,000 teachers for Texas schools.  They created a program focused on providing the pedagogy and support teachers need to succeed in the classroom.  A recent study found that 46% of Texas Teacher graduates are non-white creating a more diverse teaching workforce.   For more information go to teachersoftomorrow.org

The Democratic Platform: Tying Testing to Teacher Evaluations

Despite how the Democratic education platform reads, some researchers say there’s no consensus against using test scores in teacher evaluations

by Matt Barnum
The 74
July 2016

The Democratic platform states, “We oppose … the use of student test scores in teacher and principal evaluations, a practice which has been repeatedly rejected by researchers.”

It’s not often that educational research is mentioned in a major party platform. But several researchers who study teacher evaluation say the suggestion that there is a scholarly consensus against using test scores in teacher evaluation is misleading.

The 74 contacted a number of researchers who have studied teacher evaluation or value-added measures, a common method for assessing teacher impact on student test-score growth.

“There are many ways in which the use of test scores to inform teacher evaluation and school accountability can and should be improved. But the wholesale rejection of using test scores to inform teacher evaluations is an unproductive reaction to the limitations of test-score-based evaluation metrics,” said Matthew Kraft of Brown. “A balanced reading of the literature suggests there is mixed evidence for and against using test-score-based evaluation metrics.”

Kirabo Jackson of Northwestern said he disagreed with the platform’s language and that “test scores measures are valid, albeit imperfect, measures of teacher impacts on student skills.”

“VAMs, for the teachers for whom they can be created, do provide a piece of information about teachers’ abilities to improve student test scores,” said Katharine Strunk of the University of Southern California. “I think the research suggests that we need multiple measures — test scores, observations, and others – to rigorously and fairly evaluate teachers.”

Matthew Steinberg of the University of Pennsylvania said, “My view is that there is not in fact a consensus among academic researchers, particularly economists, who do this work, that value-added scores should not be used in high stakes teacher evaluation systems.”

Jim Wyckoff (University of Virginia), Cory Koedel (University of Missouri), and Dan Goldhaber (University of Washington Bothell) all also agreed research did not support categorically rejecting test-based teacher evaluation.

Several of the researchers said that measures of test score growth had significant limitations, but also provided meaningful information about a teacher’s impact on long-run outcomes; moreover, other ways to evaluate educators, particularly classroom observations, have some of same flaws as value-added. Some studies have found that teacher evaluations that include test scores can lead to improve student outcomes.

However, Jesse Rothstein of the University of California Berkeley said that while there was not a “full consensus” on the issue, “I do think the weight of the evidence, and the weight of expert opinion, points to the conclusion that we haven’t figured out ways to use test scores in teacher evaluations that yield benefits greater than costs.”

Susan Moore Johnson of Harvard agreed, “Both standardized tests and value-added methods — widely used to calculate each teacher’s contribution to her students’ learning — fall far short of what is required to make sound, high-stakes decisions about individual teachers. Because standardized tests often are poorly aligned with state standards or a required curriculum, they fail to accurately measure what teachers teach and students learn… Combining standardized tests and VAMS for use in teacher assessment is unwise and indefensible.”

The platform may have been referring to statements from the American Statistical Association and the American Educational Research Association that raise concerns and limitations about the use of value-added measures in teacher evaluation. (Notably, though, neither statement says that such scores should not be used whatsoever in evaluation.) A 2010 position paper signed on to by several prominent scholars also raised concerns, though a response by other researchers argued that value-added had an important role in teacher evaluation.

It’s hard to say what level of agreement amounts to a consensus, and The 74’s poll of just nine researchers may not be a representative sample of expert opinion.

And while the scholarly debate has focused on value-added measures, teachers are actually more likely to be evaluated via “student learning objectives.” The 74 previously reported that such measures have limited research evidence and several teachers say they can be easily gamed.

All told, though, the researchers’ responses highlight significant disagreement — rather than clear consensus — even among scholars on this important issue.

The Democratic platform is certainly right that some researchers reject test-based teacher evaluation — but that’s hardly the full picture.

6 things every teacher and parent should know about the GOP education platform

by Matt Barnum
The 74
July 2016

The Republican platform has been revised and approved, and is perhaps the most thorough recent discussion of the party’s prevailing view on education policy. Here are six things every parent, teacher and education observer should know about where the GOP now stands on America’s classrooms:

Bipartisan distaste for testing: The 2016 Republican platform “rejects excessive testing and ‘teaching to the test’ and supports the need for strong assessments to serve as a tool so teachers can tailor teaching to meet student needs.” What’s especially notable here is that this is not all that different from the Democratic stance, which says in part, “We are also deeply committed to ensuring that we strike a better balance on testing so that it informs, but does not drive, instruction. To that end, we encourage states to develop a multiple measures approach to assessment.” (Though note that this last excerpt is based on amendment that was approved by the platform committee; the document hasn’t been finalized yet by the Democratic delegates.)

Support for school choice (no matter the type): The GOP platform says “we support options for learning, including home-schooling, career and technical education, private or parochial schools, magnet schools, charter schools, online learning, and early-college high schools. We especially support the innovative financing mechanisms that make options available to all children: education savings accounts (ESAs), vouchers, and tuition tax credits.”

It’s notable that there is no distinction made between different types of schooling options, nor any substantive discussion about ensuring only quality options. For instance, recent evidence has found that virtual schools and vouchers lead to lower test scores for participants — but most of this evidence is grounded in testing, which, as previously stated, the party seems skeptical about.

No fans of Common Core: The platform says, “we likewise repeat our long-standing opposition to the imposition of national standards and assessments, encourage the parents and educators who are implementing alternatives to Common Core, and congratulate the states which have successfully repealed it.”

The United Nations may be brainwashing us: The platform calls for “a constitutional amendment to protect that right from interference by states, the federal government, or international bodies such as the United Nations.” Why this would be necessary is unclear, but it may be alluding to conspiracy theories related to the Common Core, including the idea that it is part of an international plot (led by the U.N. natch) to brainwash students and takeover American education.

More money, same problems: Republicans are not fans of spending money to improve education: “The United States spends an average of more than $12,000 per pupil per year in public schools, for a total of more than $620 billion. That represents more than 4 percent of GDP devoted to K-12 education in 2011-2012. Of that amount, federal spending amounted to more than $57 billion. Clearly, if money were the solution, our schools would be problem-free.” This squares with the view of Trump surrogate (though not veep) Chris Christie, who recently proposed gutting school funding in New Jersey. However, most research evidence shows that spending more money on education does in fact improve student outcomes.

Plenty of overlap with 2012: The 2016 platform is substantially similar to 2012 version. In fact, it’s nearly identical in some places.

2016 — “In sum, on the one hand enormous amounts of money are being spent for K-12 public education with overall results that do not justify that spending level. On the other hand, the common experience of families, teachers, and administrators forms the basis of what does work in education. In Congress and in the states, Republicans are bridging the gap between those two realities.”

2012 — “In sum, on the one hand enormous amounts of money are being spent for K-12 public education with overall results that do not justify that spending. On the other hand, the common experience of families, teachers, and administrators forms the basis of what does work in education. We believe the gap between those two realities can be successfully bridged, and Congressional Republicans are pointing a new way forward with major reform legislation.”

2016 — “Their D.C. Opportunity Scholarship Program should be expanded as a model for the rest of the country. We deplore the efforts of Congressional Democrats and the current President to eliminate this successful program for disadvantaged students in order to placate the leaders of the teachers’ unions.”

2012 — “The Republican-founded D.C. Opportunity Scholarship Program should be expanded as a model for the rest of the country. We deplore the efforts by Congressional Democrats and the current President to kill this successful program for disadvantaged students in order to placate the leaders of the teachers’ unions.”

Teachers’ union head says Clinton is with them against school choice

by Jason Russell
Washington Examiner
July 29, 2016

Hillary Clinton’s position on public charter schools has been fairly ambiguous since her presidential campaign began, but at least one teachers’ union leader says Clinton is on board with their view.

“Hillary Clinton is on the exact same page as we are,” Lily Eskelsen Garcia, president of the National Education Association, told the American Prospect’s Rachel Cohen. “[She] says there are some innovative charter schools that were designed to impact the system, to try something creative. But if a charter has any other reason for existing, like making someone money, then she does not support those, and neither do we. I don’t care if they call it a for-profit or if it’s technically a nonprofit.”

The 3 million-member NEA was one of the first unions to endorse Clinton’s presidential bid in October 2015, although they waited until after the 1.6 million-member American Federation of Teachers endorsed Clinton in July.

Clinton has generally been supportive of charter schools over the past two decades. In a July address to the NEA’s annual conference, Clinton expressed tepid support for charter schools in front of a generally anti-charter crowd. “When schools get it right, whether they’re traditional public schools or public charter schools, let’s figure out what’s working,” Clinton said, followed by a din of booing. “No, let’s figure out what’s working and share it with schools across America,” she followed up, adding a denouncement of for-profit schools. Clinton made a similar remark a couple weeks later to the American Federation of Teachers’ annual convention.

Before that, in December 2015, Clinton praised a bill for giving resources to expand high-quality public charter schools. But a month prior she was criticizing charters: “Most charter schools — I don’t want to say every one — but most charter schools, they don’t take the hardest-to-teach kids, or, if they do, they don’t keep them.”

Back in the 1990s, when charter schools were just getting their start, Clinton was generally seen as a supporter.

Charter schools are publicly funded and do not charge tuition. Compared to traditional public schools, charters have more independence and flexibility in their operations and curricula, which is why many families find charters desirable. They are open to all students, but they often don’t have enough space to meet demand. In that case, they use a random lottery system to determine admission.

Jason Russell is a commentary writer for the Washington Examiner.

Tim Scott: Education Is the “Magic” Solution to America’s Problems

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Opportunity Lives
July 28, 2016

“If you’re looking for the closest thing to magic in America, it’s education.”

No, not Harry Potter magic. This kind of magic, said U.S. Senator Tim Scott (R-S.C.), is the kind of public policy that can help cure society’s seemingly incurable ills.

Scott’s remarks were addressed to the Kemp Forum on Expanding Opportunity in Indianapolis, a gathering of lawmakers and activists supportive of school choice. The event, co-hosted by the Jack Kemp Foundation and the Center for Education Reform (CER), and sponsored by Opportunity Lives, focused on how education reform can best provide opportunities to those most underserved by today’s education policies.

“The school choice movement began over 20 years ago in 1994,” CER founder and CEO Jeanne Allen told the crowd. “And while we’ve made progress since then, we’ve now come to a standstill.” This lack of progress was unacceptable, Allen continued, and said it was up to leaders like Scott and those assembled to regain momentum for the school choice movement.

Scott moderated two panels, the first of state lawmakers and the second of parents and activists. To the first panel, Scott posed the question of what needs to be done in order to ensure the best outcomes for students. Leah Vukmir, the assistant majority leader for the Wisconsin State Senate, answered that empowering parents over bureaucrats should always be a top priority.

“Parents know what the best choice is for their children!” Vukmir said. “When it boils down to who do I trust, I trust the parents.”

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State Rep. Tim Kelly (R-Mich.) pushed for the unbundling of federal block grants doled out by Congress and the U.S. Department of Education, and giving that control to the states to determine what best fits their needs.

Vukmir also said current education policies are doing students a disservice by forcing them into four-year colleges while ignoring vocational education programs.

Carol D’Amico, executive vice president for national engagement and philanthropy at USA Funds, emphasized the role  vocational training programs can play in securing jobs for students. “Allow communities to blur the lines between education and work,” she said. “It changes everything.”

D’Amico said one of her students once told her that the keys to his success were his “ships.” When she looked at him confused, he explained his “ships” were his “internships, apprenticeships, and mentorships.” D’Amico stressed that these three “ships” are essential tools to provide students looking to transition to the workforce, especially when training the next generation of skilled laborers.

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Jackie Cissell, a native of Indianapolis whose son struggled in the local public school before excelling in a charter school, echoed Allen’s warning that education reformers should not become complacent.

“There is a risk of ‘reform fatigue’,” Cissell said. “We can not afford to be tired when kids aren’t learning!”

In terms of keeping parents invested in their children’s success, Bob Woodson, the president of the Center for Neighborhood Enterprise and a star of Opportunity Lives’Comeback” series, reminded the audience that true reform comes from within the individual, not from external forces.

“Parents cannot be acted upon,” said Woodson. “They must be agents of their own kids’ improvement.”

On the effectiveness of charter schools, Scott pointed to the success of the D.C. Opportunity Scholarship Program, which allows District of Columbia students to attend magnet and charter schools. In the D.C. public schools, Scott explained, the cost per student is roughly $20,000, with a graduation rate of 64 percent. Meanwhile, the cost per student in the District’s charter schools was roughly $8,400, with a graduation rate of 71 percent.

“So you get a better result for less than half of the cost!” Scott exclaimed, “So why would anyone be against this?”

Gillum Ferguson is the Deputy Editor at Opportunity Lives. You can follow him on Twitter @GillumFerguson.

Business Insider: Mike Pence’s record has experts divided

by Abby Jackson
Business Insider
July 26, 2016

After Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump selected Indiana Governor Mike Pence as his running mate, Hillary Clinton ripped into the choice.

“Mike Pence is one of the most extreme vice presidential picks in a generation,” Clinton said at an American Federation of Teachers conference in Minneapolis on Monday.

“And he’s one of the most hostile politicians in America when it comes to public education,” she continued.

It was searing criticism, especially as Pence has made education the cornerstone of his policy agenda since he assumed governorship over the Hoosier State in 2013.

While it’s expected that Clinton would be critical of Trump and Pence while stumping in Minneapolis, the attack highlights Pence’s divisiveness when it comes to education policies.

School vouchers

As governor, Pence has championed a number of school choice policies, like Indiana’s voucher program, that affect funding at public schools. Vouchers allow families to redeem tuition funding if they choose to send their children to private, rather than public, schools.

Pence has won big in his push to expand the state’s voucher program, successfully lifting the cap (previously $4,800) on the amount of money families can receive when sending their children to private schools. In fact, Indiana’s voucher program is now one of the largest in the nation, according to the New York Times.

Opponents of voucher programs argue that they siphon essential funding from already meager public school budgets to other schools, and at their worst, are unconstitutional, as they use taxpayer-funded vouchers to benefit religious schools.

“Pence’s K through 12 education agenda has had serious, deleterious consequences for public education,” Bob Arnove, the Chancellor’s Professor Emeritus of Educational Leadership & Policy Studies at Indiana University, told Business Insider. “He’s let ideology and religious convictions trump, and that’s no pun intended, the common good.”

John P. Bean, professor emeritus at Indiana University, also believes Pence’s school choice policies to harmful to the public education system.

“Pence’s promotion of school choice seems to be a thinly disguised handout to private religious schools at a time when public schools need more funding to function well,” Bean told Business Insider via email.

That opinion seems to be debated.

“Pence’s record in defending and advancing educational opportunity and access is strong, and his record on improving Indy’s schools is strong,” Michelle Tigani, the communications director at the Center of Education Reform, told Business Insider.

Tigani specifically highlighted that vouchers help the neediest families and children.

“Voucher programs largely help low income middle class kids; these are the kids that most need access,” to quality education, she said.

Voucher policies typically have income restrictions that vary state-to-state to ensure education funds truly end up in the families most in need. In Indiana, the 2016-17 income limit for a family of four to receive the largest voucher amount was $44,955.

 

Read the full article here.

A cornerstone of Mike Pence’s political record has experts cleanly divided

by Abby Jackson
Business Insider
July 26, 2016

After Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump selected Indiana Governor Mike Pence as his running mate, Hillary Clinton ripped into the choice.

“Mike Pence is one of the most extreme vice presidential picks in a generation,” Clinton said at an American Federation of Teachers conference in Minneapolis on Monday.

“And he’s one of the most hostile politicians in America when it comes to public education,” she continued.

It was searing criticism, especially as Pence has made education the cornerstone of his policy agenda since he assumed governorship over the Hoosier State in 2013.

While it’s expected that Clinton would be critical of Trump and Pence while stumping in Minneapolis, the attack highlights Pence’s divisiveness when it comes to education policies.

School vouchers

As governor, Pence has championed a number of school choice policies, like Indiana’s voucher program, that affect funding at public schools. Vouchers allow families to redeem tuition funding if they choose to send their children to private, rather than public, schools.

Pence has won big in his push to expand the state’s voucher program, successfully lifting the cap (previously $4,800) on the amount of money families can receive when sending their children to private schools. In fact, Indiana’s voucher program is now one of the largest in the nation, according to the New York Times.

Opponents of voucher programs argue that they siphon essential funding from already meager public school budgets to other schools, and at their worst, are unconstitutional, as they use taxpayer-funded vouchers to benefit religious schools.

“Pence’s K through 12 education agenda has had serious, deleterious consequences for public education,” Bob Arnove, the Chancellor’s Professor Emeritus of Educational Leadership & Policy Studies at Indiana University, told Business Insider. “He’s let ideology and religious convictions trump, and that’s no pun intended, the common good.”

John P. Bean, professor emeritus at Indiana University, also believes Pence’s school choice policies to harmful to the public education system.

“Pence’s promotion of school choice seems to be a thinly disguised handout to private religious schools at a time when public schools need more funding to function well,” Bean told Business Insider via email.

That opinion seems to be debated.

“Pence’s record in defending and advancing educational opportunity and access is strong, and his record on improving Indy’s schools is strong,” Michelle Tigani, the communications director at the Center of Education Reform, told Business Insider.

Tigani specifically highlighted that vouchers help the neediest families and children.

“Voucher programs largely help low income middle class kids; these are the kids that most need access,” to quality education, she said.

Voucher policies typically have income restrictions that vary state-to-state to ensure education funds truly end up in the families most in need. In Indiana, the 2016-17 income limit for a family of four to receive the largest voucher amount was $44,955.

 

Read the full article here.

Expanding Opportunity Event Schedule

U.S. Senator Tim Scott moderates discussion with lawmakers, leaders and activists

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 26, 2016

WASHINGTON, DC — The Center for Education Reform has teamed up with the Jack Kemp Foundation to elevate the national conversation on expanding education opportunity, a critical step toward upward mobility for all Americans, particularly our youth.

The Kemp Forum on Expanding Opportunity event will be streamed live from Indianapolis, IN on edreform.com at 7:00pm – 8:30pm Wednesday, July 27th.

Originally designed to connect local, state and federal lawmakers with grassroots leaders in states tackling these issues with success, the Indiana event was expected to feature Governor Mike Pence, but he has had to cancel due to his new duties on the national campaign trail.

In addition to Sen. Scott, we are pleased to host the following participants:

  • Senator Leah Vukmir, State of Wisconsin, District 5
  • Representative Tim Kelly, State of Michigan, District 94
  • Robert L. Woodson, Founder & Pres., Center for Neighborhood Enterprise
  • Jacqueline Cissell, Director of Community Engagement in Indiana
  • Carol D’Amico, Exec. VP, National Engagement & Philanthropy, USA Funds

For more information, visit https://www.edreform.com/kemp-forum-on-expanding-opportunity/.

About the Center for Education Reform

Founded in 1993, the Center for Education Reform aims to expand educational opportunities that lead to improved economic outcomes for all Americans — particularly our youth — ensuring that the conditions are ripe for innovation, freedom and flexibility throughout U.S. education.