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EDUCATION POLICIES, ANALYSIS, AND RESOURCES

The Education Domain tracks and reports on policies that deal with school choice, student loans, curriculum reform efforts, teacher unions, students with disabilities, affirmative action, minority students, vocational training and higher education. This domain tracks policies emanating from the White House, the Department of Education and state legislatures.

Latest Education Posts

 

Schools Are Failing to Teach Climate Change

Brief #61 – Education Policy
By Lynn Waldsmith

Global warming is, above all else, a looming crisis for children.

With extreme weather events such as heat waves and wildfires expected to rise in frequency, intensity and duration under global warming, it should come as no surprise that younger generations will face many more such events over their lifetimes compared to their parents and grandparents. In fact, a new survey published in Science magazine predicts children born in 2020 could face seven times more climate disasters than those born in 1960.

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Why Universal Pre-K is So Important

Brief #59 – Education Policy
By Lynn Waldsmith

The evidence is overwhelming that children who attend preschool not only dramatically improve the quality of their own lives but the welfare of their communities. Yet, far too many kids aren’t able to attend because their parents simply can’t afford it. President Biden is hoping to change that by making universal pre-K a reality, if Congress passes the $1.8 trillion American Families Plan.

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Critical Race Theory Debate Rages On

Brief #58 – Education Policy
By Lynn Waldsmith

As millions of K-12 students head back to school in the coming weeks, many conservative lawmakers and anxious parents continue to rail against what they see as the dangers of teaching critical race theory, or CRT, in the classroom. But the reality is that myths and misinformation about CRT are based in fear and being perpetuated as a political tool.

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College Athletes Can Now Earn Money

Brief # 57 – Education Policy
By Lynn Waldsmith

For the first time, college athletes can profit from their name, image and likeness (known as “N.I.L.), now that the NCAA decided to allow the historic change in a surrender to growing pressure from states and the Supreme Court. While student athletes still cannot be directly paid by the schools they represent, the sweeping change to the NCAA’s longstanding policy that student athletes not receive any form of payment, other than scholarships that cover tuition, room and board, opens the door to that possibility in the future.

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The Impact of Biden’s American Rescue Plan on Education

Brief #57—Education
By Emily Carty
President Biden’s American Rescue Plan, signed into law on March 11, 2021, has a wide range of implications regarding the school system and, more generally, education and development of our youth population. Under the Act’s Title II (Committee on health, education, labor, and pensions), Subtitle A (Education Matters), Biden’s plan for our education system is laid out. Throughout the entirety of the act however, there are various sections that impact children or education, particularly notable is an increased child tax credit that will be extended to benefit lower-income families.

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Media Literacy in Schools

Brief #56—Education
By Emily Carty
As of 2021, 14 states have passed some sort of legislation related to Media Literacy. The Majority of these states passed the laws in the past few years, signaling the growing interest in monitoring the media’s influence on society through increasing society’s ability to sift through the media’s information. Youth today are engaged in digital media, and therefore media in general, even more than in previous generations. With the political process playing out on a screen, sensationalist  or “fake news” plastering social media,  and real, extensive studies into the benefits of being media literate — society today is coming to terms with the dangers of media illiteracy.

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Democratic Education and Practice

Brief #55—Education
By Emily Carty
Schools are an ideal place to plant the seeds of democracy and cultivate a culture of learning, participation, and will to be informed and take action for one’s rights and ideals. Commentary from a recent Brookings Institute article contrasts the emphasis placed on preparing kids for a modern economy with the lack of resources to prepare kids for a modern democracy. Citing the constant criticisms of schools being unable to prepare graduates for the job market or college, the author notes that a demand for prepared, active citizens is lacking. Conservatives and progressives have their respective fears about civic education in schools — will it be propaganda, whitewashed history, or activist training to make major changes to our country? While those concerns do have their place, no one can deny that basic education around the political process, civil rights, and modern media literacy is much needed in this country.

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First Lady Jill Biden Highlights Role As First Professor in the White House

Brief #54—Education
By Linda F Hersey
Twenty-four hours before Joe Biden was inaugurated as president, First Lady Jill Biden was teaching her English composition class as usual at Northern Virginia Community College. The First Lady’s decision to keep her day job as she settles into the White House is symbolic. She said that she likes her job as a college professor, worked hard for her PhD and is committed to teaching. Having a first professor in the White House energizes calls or free college education, which is available in many European countries, including Norway, Sweden and Germany, which have apprenticeships as well. Her commitment and advocacy raise the status of higher education in the Biden presidency. The First Lady is a long-time member of the National Education Association (NEA), which is the nation’s largest labor union and whose members advocated for the Biden presidency.

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