This story on Margaret Spellings and school choice by Ed Week’s Hendrie has it all. Choice advocate Clint Bolick goes on the record saying, “Rod Paige was a tough act to follow, but certainly the president could have chosen someone who has a strong track record on school choice, and Margaret Spellings does not” and Fordham’s Finn says basically the same thing. Department of Education’s resident choicenik Nina Rees tries to paper over any controversy but it’s clear that voucher folks in Texas didn’t consider her an ally and that the D.C. voucher folks don’t either. Of course, her pragmatism on all this is why Eduwonk thinks she’s a good pick in the first place, but watching all this conservative angst sure is fun anyway! (At her confirmation hearings will any Republican senator ask her, “Are you now, or have you ever been, a Democrat?”)
Senator Sessions takes a victory lap on IDEA discipline on the AP wire.
Don’t Know Much About History: The NEA says too many schools are being identified as needing improvement under NCLB (but funny, they don’t mention either the really low cut scores in some states right now – for instance, schools needing only one in three or one in four kids proficient to make adequate yearly progress – or that even more were identified under the previous law but that nothing happened to most of them. Probably just space constraints.). Note to Democrats, choosing producers over consumers is dangerous and risky politics.
NYT’s Freedman again visits the small schools issue in NYC. NYT’s Winter and Cooper and Herszenhorn write up the latest chapter in the NY equity fight. Punchline: NYC to get more money but no one ponying up to pay yet.
Dirty Secret Alert: NY Post’s Sager tracks down some teachers to get their views on the teacher contract in NYC. Anecdotal but well worth reading.