Archive for November, 2010

Check Out Our Latest Newsletter

Sunday, November 14th, 2010

Learn about NCSC’s efforts to reach a broader audience in the center’s latest newsletter.

The newsletter tells about the center’s decision to try new approaches to outreach – including through this blog and the redesigned Web site – and tells how to find us on Facebook and Twitter.

The newsletter also provides brief descriptions of several research briefs released this year as part of the outreach effort. The briefs describe papers by NCSC researchers in language that is accessible to a broad audience and are produced in a format that highlights study questions and results so they are easy to find.  

Other sections of the newsletter describe conference presentations by NCSC researchers and summarize recent news headlines on school choice.


Read the full text of research briefs summarized in the newsletter.

Instructional Conditions in Charter Schools and Students’ Mathematics Achievement Gains

Charter Schools and the Teacher Job Search in Michigan

Choosing Indianapolis Charter Schools: Espoused Versus Revealed Academic Preferences

Teacher Turnover in Charter Schools

Will School Choice Ride the Big Red Wave?

Monday, November 8th, 2010

One topic of interest to post-election pundits has been how key education issues will fare after last week’s state and congressional elections. Several news organizations suggest that the Republican sweep may give school choice new prominence in both Congress and state legislatures.

 The Washington Post writes that education reform provides a rare area for possible common ground between the Obama Administration and the new Republican Congress in part because both support charter schools. The Post discusses odds of whether the new Congress will have much appetite for reauthorizing – or revising – No Child Left Behind, with its provisions for charter school options.The newspaper also notes that Race to the Top, the administration’s school reform grant competition that favors charter school expansion, awarded an early, large grant to Tennessee, home state of Lamar Alexander, a leading Republican on the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee.

 Fox News  lists school choice as one of several issues the new Congress might be eager to embrace, building on buzz from the film “Waiting for Superman.” Charter schools are already well established and expanding in many states, but Fox predicts that vouchers will enjoy a resurgence of support among congressional Republicans.

 The Dallas Morning News speculates that the new, more-Republican-than-ever Texas House and Senate may be emboldened to push for issues that have failed in recent years such as allowing school vouchers and lifting the state’s cap on the number of charter schools. Whichever programs gain traction will have to be inexpensive or financed through fees because the state faces a shortfall for the next biennium that could exceed $24 billion.


Check out these publications from the NCSC archives for more information on the politics of charter school laws, No Child Left Behind, and public opinion on school reform.

The Persuadable Public: The 2009 Education Next-PEPG Survey asks if information changes minds

School choice agenda setting: A national analysis of individual state legislators

Responses to No Child Left Behind among Traditional Public Schools and Public Charter Schools

Editors’ Preface, Special Issue on Policy, Politics, and Organization of School Choice

The NCSC is funded by a 5 year, $13.3 million grant from the U.S. Department of Education's Institute of Education Sciences. Its lead institution is Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tennessee. The center is housed on the campus of Peabody College, one of the nation's top graduate schools of education.