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All high school students should learn CPR

CPR training during high school should be considered a life skill, much like swimming or driver education, and thus become a national standard set by the U.S. Department of Education. This notion of school-based training, easily housed within one class period on one day, represents a tantalizing path to potentially save many lives each year.

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New York tax cap having desired effect

A recent report by New York's state comptroller office indicates that the 2 percent tax cap has had the effect legislators had in mind when they passed the law. Governments and school districts are generally in compliance. When the tax cap first took effect in 2012, 15 of the state's 57 counties outside New York City exceeded it. This year, only six did.

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Iowa Legislature should do better by school districts next year

State law requires the Legislature to set state funding for K12 public schools two years in advance. Perhaps it is flawed in its aggressive time requirement, but the law is wise in its fundamental goal to provide local school districts with state aid decisions early—not nearly two months after local school districts must certify the next year's budgets.

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Analysis: Texas schools, by the numbers

With 5.1 million students, Texas has more kids in public school than 28 states have residents. The latest numbers from the Texas Education Agency also show the student population as 51.8 percent Hispanic, 29.4 percent Anglo, 12.7 percent African-American and 3.7 percent Asian.

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Matthew Zalaznick's picture

Schools, courts worry about new Texas truancy law

Texas' current truancy law, which allows schools to file misdemeanor charges against students who play hooky too often, appears to be working the way its designers hoped. But the rules will change when students return to school this fall, and there is widespread disagreement on what to expect.

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Matthew Zalaznick's picture

Senate bill would let schools give education money to financial consultants

As budget-strapped Chicago follows a mass school closure with a new plan to layoff more than 1,400 teachers, one set of transactions sticks out: the city’s moves to refinance $1 billion in debt through complex financial instruments called swaps.

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Matthew Zalaznick's picture

How much tougher is Common Core?

In an early glimpse of how much tougher state tests could be in the Common Core era, a new federal report released in July shows that early adopters of the controversial standards are assessing their students using far higher bars of difficulty.

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Matthew Zalaznick's picture

D.I.Y. education before YouTube

The mainstream school system — with its barrage of tests, Common Core and “excellent sheep” — encourages learning as a passive, standardized process. But here and there, with the help of YouTube and thousands of podcasts, a growing group of students and adults are beginning to supplement their education.

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Next frontier for school choice?

The Colorado Supreme Court issued a ruling invalidating a district-level voucher program for private schools, including religious schools. Such a broad ruling raises questions about what other public investments could be construed as supporting these institutions. Perhaps that is why this case may be brought before the U.S. Supreme Court under the grounds of free exercise of religion.

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Swim lessons a public safety gift for families

The Muscogee County School Board is discussing a pilot program of swimming lessons for kindergarteners. We know from statistics, anecdotal evidence and common sense that small children who learn to swim in formal lessons are dramatically less likely to drown. Local students should have free access to those literally life-saving skills.

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