March 16, 2010

March 16, 2010 | News Releases on Education

Tucson Group Examines Education Reforms

Washington, D.C., March 16—Needed education reforms and how parents can battle a failing status quo will be outlined Thursday, March 18, in a program in Tucson organized by a local civic group.

Two policy analysts, one from Arizona and one from Washington, D.C., will tackle the topic “The Future of American Education and Its Enemies” in a panel discussion set for 6:45 p.m. at the Hilton El Conquistador, 10000 N Oracle Rd. in Tucson. The sold-out event will begin with a reception at 6.

Clint Bolick, director of the Goldwater Institute’s Scharf-Norton Center for Constitutional Litigation, will be joined by Lindsey Burke, education policy analyst at The Heritage Foundation, the leading Washington-based think tank.

Event sponsor is the Tucson Committee for Heritage, a group of civic and business leaders who support Heritage’s conservative policy solutions. Ferdinand von Galen is chairman of the group; Jim Click is honorary chairman.

Heritage’s vision for education reform includes returning authority to the states and giving parents the opportunity to choose a safe and effective school for their children.

“Since 1985, inflation-adjusted federal spending on K-12 education has increased 138 percent,” Burke writes. “Yet, indicators of educational improvement such as increases in academic achievement and graduation rates have remained flat.”

Fifty years of expanding federal involvement in education, as advocated by teachers unions, hasn’t gotten good academic results, Burke notes. She will argue for proven reforms such as performance pay for teachers, alternative teacher certification and, above all, school choice for parents.

Bolick, co-founder and former vice president of the Institute for Justice, focuses his research at Goldwater on constitutional issues. The author of several books on school choice and judicial matters, he has championed school choice in court, including Zelman v. Simmons-Harris before the U.S. Supreme Court.

The Heritage Foundation is the nation’s most broadly supported public policy research institute, with more than 600,000 individual, foundation and corporate donors. Founded in 1973, it has a staff of 244 and an annual expense budget of more than $70 million.

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