It’s official (almost), Arne Duncan is your next Secretary of Education.   Plenty will be written on that but the punchline is that it’s a good pick on several levels.    Relevant Eduwonk Duncan flashback here.

In the meantime, interesting reform under-story:  The announcement will come at one of the Academy for Urban School Leadership’s schools, the Dodge Renaissance Academy.   Background on AUSL and why it matters in the intro (pp. 11) to this (pdf).   More reform synergy?  AUSL is also a testament to New Leaders for New Schools, (6 of its 11 principals and the co-founder and managing partner are NLNS) which is also described and discussed in the same publication (pdf).

Update:  All your news links here.  Update II:  Don’t miss Carl Cannon’s take.  Update III:  The coveted Freakonomics endorsement!   And, George “Disrupter” Miller gives bloggy approval and goes to the videotape!  Update IV:  The market approves!

11 Replies to “Duncan”

  1. The idea of a nationalized school system is utterly repulsive from the standpoint of basic rights and effective education. King Duncan has no right to make people kneel to his pronouncements. His (the government’s) encroachments should be met with whatever means are necessary to protect our children and ourselves.

    “Education” by fiat only creates favored groups that 1) do not have to produce quality, 2) live like parasites off of everyone else, 3) entrench themselves via ideological control and suppression of minorities, and 3) ensure that the inevitable problems in a closed system result in yet further power solidification – especially the more centralized power becomes.

    The USDOE should be treated like any other tyrannical body: off with its head! If this goal is not readily achievable then straightaway peaceful secession of schools is warranted. Maybe both can happen simultaneously.

    Justice requires dismantling the nationalized schooling apparatus. Something must be done before King Duncan and his bureaucrats eat out more of our substance!

  2. Reason: I’m assuming your post is a parody, but on the odd chance it is not:
    Do you live in this country? The last thing we have is a nationalized school system. If we did then maybe there wouldn’t be such enormous funding disparities between our suburban and city/rural schools, such huge differences in teacher quality (and salaries) from state to state, and a different testing system in each state. Sec of Ed is largely a symbolic position. I hope Duncan and Obama use the bully pulpit to fix some aspects of NCLB, but I don’t expect much to happen overall. Power lies in states and local districts in this system, and because they are tied to property taxes and property values, no one’s going to give that up.

  3. Hi Kajey,

    I am merely looking at the trend towards consolidation. The combination of unions, NCLB, other legislations and ideological currents show a trajectory aiming at more and more nationalization. Do you deny this?

    Of course, these moves are on top of states seizing power from localities. Now, one who has forgotten about the post Abraham Lincoln world might think that checks-and-balances are being created but there is no stopping the feds when they want their way. There is no federalism now; if there ever was.

    Besides, the feds do not have to use overt force all the time. Look at the sycophantic opportunism displayed by mayors and governors heading to DC to grovel for a share of the bailout loot.

    Sure, the payment scheme for schooling is local. Taxation is always on property, and all property is local. But where is the money going?

    Parents were overly excluded from their children’s education even when schools were more localized. Unions could prey on these disparate entities, parents and communities, more easily. Now with district, regional, state, and national controls/combinations, further marginalization seems inevitable.

    Government never should have been allowed to get involved with education.

  4. The appointment seems to me a signal that education isn’t high on priorities list. Duncan has never really worked in schools as an administrator or teacher, his accomplishments in Chicago are negligible and arguable–havetest scores and student achievement risen or did expectations and test demands sink? He’s a nice yes guy. In other words, Duncan’s exactly the person for a low-energy, underfunded, and undirected cabinet post. He plays ball well–off and on the court.

  5. What they need is more funding for agencies like Mass 20/20 – Mass Insight (same address) to study how to more effectively raise the poll ratings of those supporting education integrity.

  6. Here is what the National Association for Gifted Children had to say about Obama’s Duncan pick:

    Our country’s highest achieving students are performing way below their potential. Students from disadvantaged backgrounds are particularly affected because they are often not recognized or provided the services they need.

    Duncan is a great pick for Secretary of Education because he already has experience in raising performance levels in urban schools. Hopefully he will continue to move our schools beyond proficiency towards excellence.

  7. This is your great effort and nice thought.Because Low schooling standard our student are not performing 100%. he idea of a nationalized school system is best.www.quranreading.com educational website.There should be same course and laws in every school of nation.

  8. I was curious if you ever considered changing the page layout
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