Five Stories — Happy Endings TBD…

For your consideration, here are five education stories not getting the attention they should right now, each one has implications that could mean a major political or policy pivot in coming years:

*The increasing support for vouchers among African-Americans, now a solid majority overall and even more among younger blacks and families.

*How President Bush’s mishandling of NCLB has created a mess for his signature education law, alienated even supporters, and potentially hamstrung some school improvement efforts.

*How important and significant it is that the entire Democratic ticket for president champions differential pay for teachers.

*The achievement gap. In personal terms it’s catastrophic, in demographic ones if it’s not the nation’s top social policy challenge it’s right up there.

*The teachers’ union led referendum in Washington State to overturn the charter law there. Huge consequences for charters if this succeeds.

Two More Bonus Freebies! (A) Why No Child Left Behind is going to be a boon to efforts to make state school finance systems more equitable for poor kids and (B) The NEA’s membership woes and what that potentially means for the organization down the road.

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