National School Choice Week: Education experts on federal role in reform, charter schools, and school choice

As the national conversation over education resurfaces during National School Choice Week, the education team at the American Enterprise Institute (AEI) has released a number of products that hit on the key points of the current education debate:

In a just-published Education Outlook, AEI director of education policy studies Rick Hess (author of the forthcoming “Cage-Busting Leadership”) and research fellow Andrew Kelly examine What the federal government can (and cannot) do to improve K-12 schooling:

“While the federal government can force states and districts to do things, the strictures of federalism, the limits of federal institutions, and the messiness of the lawmaking process greatly restrict federal policymakers’ ability to ensure that these things are done well.”

In the policy brief Charter Schools as nation builders: Democracy Prep and civic education, research fellow Andrew Kelly and Daniel Lautzenheiser provide an in-depth case study on a top-performing charter school that has incorporated civic learning in their school curriculum and school culture:

“What makes Democracy Prep schools unique is that they prioritize closing the civic gap with the same force as closing the traditional student achievement gaps in reading and math.”

In a just-published op-ed, research fellow Michael McShane reflects on his experience as a teacher and why school choice is “a means for transforming the American education system”:

“Choice is no panacea to the ills of public education. Granting every child in America a voucher or a tuition tax credit scholarship tomorrow would not immediately solve all of the problems of the American public education system. What choice does is establish the conditions under which change can happen.”

AEI education experts are available to discuss the pressing issues in education and policy recommendations to  improve our schools based on their scholarship and personal experiences in the field– please contact a media services representative listed below.

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About the Author

 

Frederick M.
Hess
  • An educator, political scientist and author, Frederick M. Hess studies K-12 and higher education issues. His books include "Cage-Busting Leadership," "Breakthrough Leadership in the Digital Age," "The Same Thing Over and Over," "Education Unbound," "Common Sense School Reform," "Revolution at the Margins," and "Spinning Wheels." He is also the author of the popular Education Week blog, "Rick Hess Straight Up." Hess's work has appeared in scholarly and popular outlets such as Teachers College Record, Harvard Education Review, Social Science Quarterly, Urban Affairs Review, American Politics Quarterly, The Chronicle of Higher Education, Phi Delta Kappan, Educational Leadership, U.S. News & World Report, National Affairs, the Washington Post, the New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, the Atlantic and National Review. He has edited widely cited volumes on the Common Core, the role of for-profits in education, education philanthropy, school costs and productivity, the impact of education research, and No Child Left Behind.  Hess serves as executive editor of Education Next, as lead faculty member for the Rice Education Entrepreneurship Program, and on the review boards for the Broad Prize in Urban Education and the Broad Prize for Public Charter Schools. He also serves on the boards of directors of the National Association of Charter School Authorizers and 4.0 SCHOOLS. A former high school social studies teacher, he teaches or has taught at the University of Virginia, the University of Pennsylvania, Georgetown University, Rice University and Harvard University. He holds an M.A. and Ph.D. in Government, as well as an M.Ed. in Teaching and Curriculum, from Harvard University.


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  • Email: rhess@aei.org
  • Assistant Info

    Name: Sarah DuPre
    Phone: 202-862-7160
    Email: Sarah.DuPre@aei.org

 

Andrew P.
Kelly

 

Michael Q.
McShane
  • Michael Q. McShane is a research fellow in education policy studies at AEI. He is the coeditor, with Frederick Hess, of "Common Core Meets Education Reform" (Teachers College Press, 2013). He is also the coauthor of "President Obama and Education Reform: The Personal and the Political" (Palgrave MacMillan, 2012). His analyses have been published widely in technical journals and reports including Education Finance and Policy. He has contributed to more popular publications such as Education Next, The Huffington Post, National Review, The Chronicle of Higher Education, and the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. He began his career as an inner-city high school teacher in Montgomery, Alabama.


    Follow Mike McShane on Twitter.

  • Phone: 202-862-5838
    Email: Michael.McShane@aei.org

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