Over the past several days some interesting articles have been published on specific education topics. Each is worth reading:
- The first, an editorial in the Washington Examiner, focuses on the impact charter schools are having on education in theDistrict of Columbia.
- The second article focuses on the difficulties being experienced in reauthorizing the No Child Left Behind law. (Rightly or wrongly, the author believes that: Failure to update the 2001 No Child Left Behind law, despite considerable support from both Democrats and Republicans on Capitol Hill, would have the practical effect of giving President Obama a much freer hand in setting federal education policy and pushing his favored reforms.)
- The third article, by former congresswoman Melissa Hart, describes some unusual circumstances surrounding a federal False Claims Act lawsuit against Education Management Corporation (a for-profit) that was joined by the Dept of Justice in May 2011. (Here is a New York Times piece with some background information and a different point of view.)
All in all, these articles lead one to conclude that the size of the D.C.-based education-industrial-complex is so massive that it needs to be drastically reduced or eliminated.
Coincidentally, in a speech given today at the Family Research Council, Representative Michelle Bachmann, stated that, if elected president, she would repeal all federal education laws (i.e., policy authority). She added that she would eliminate the Department of Education. The key step, however, would be eliminating the education laws because erasing the Dept of Education alone would do nothing to end the programs, activities, and spending that are required under all these federal statutes. Only statutory repeal will do that. It was interesting to hear Rep. Bachmann make this distinction.