Education Next

A quarterly scholarly journal of the Hoover Institution that explores issues relating to education policy and K-12 education reform in the United States.

Articles from Vol. 4, No. 2, Spring

A Board's Eye View: The Town's Public Schools Were among the Worst. Yet No One Seemed to Care
During the last weeks of my brief tenure as a member of the local public school board, I took to carrying around a copy of the Declaration of Independence. I felt a need to commune with ancestors who had suffered a "long train of abuses"--and done...
A Building Need: Charter Schools in Search of Good Homes
THE 1,100 STUDENTS AT E. A. OLLE MIDDLE School in suburban Houston enjoy a relatively new facility, built in 1988 and renovated since, with grounds that include an athletic field and even an amateur radio station. Just a few miles away, their 330 peers...
A Kibbutz Education: The Collective Farm Was a Powerful Educational Tool
Working the earth purifies the soul" was one of the many mottos at Ben Shemen, the boarding school I attended as a teenager living in what was then British Palestine. The educational experience at Ben Shemen was grounded in the soil; students had to...
Civic Education
In "Tug of War" (Research, Fall 2003), James B. Murphy argues that "the attempt to inculcate civic values in our schools is at best ineffective and often undermines the intrinsic moral purpose of schooling." Murphy's first argument relies on the...
Civic Education: Can Public Schools Teach Good Citizenship?
DECLINING VOTER PARTICIPATION AMONG the young. Persistently low scores on national civics and history assessments. High-school graduates who can't find Iraq on a globe. [ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] These are just some of the symptoms of civic education...
Exploring the Costs of Accountability: Claims That the No Child Left Behind Act Represents an "Unfunded Mandate" Wilt under Close Scrutiny
How much will the federal No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB) cost? Critics argue that NCLB's requirement that states bring all students up to academic proficiency by the year 2014 represents a massive unfunded mandate. William J. Mathis, for example,...
Finding Good Leaders
I had always planned to semi-retire into education after I had saved enough in my business career to supplement a teacher's pay. Now that I am moving from the business world to education, I read Frederick Hess's article on educational leadership ("Lifting...
How to Decentralize
The problems of governance structure and budgeting described by Jon Fullerton and William Ouchi ("Mounting Debt" and "Academic Freedom," Forum, Winter 2004) are not unique to education. The same problems of overcentralization plague the management...
Just the Facts: A Guide for School Researchers
School Figures: The Data Behind the Debate by Hanna Skandera and Richard Sousa Hoover Institution, 2003, $15; 342 pp. The education field sometimes seems flooded with numbers, but all too often they're numbing, obscure, of uncertain accuracy,...
Teachers Unions: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly
The Worm in the Apple: How the Teacher Unions Are Destroying American Education by Peter Brimelow HarperCollins, 2003, $24.95; 320 pages. Peter Brimelow aims high. In The Worm in the Apple, he seeks to emulate The History of Standard Oil,...
The Gentleman's "A": New Evidence That Tough-Grading Teachers Elicit Better Student Performance
WITH REPORTS THAT SOME OF THE NATION'S FINEST UNIVERSITIES have been handing out A's like lollipops at Halloween, the lowering of standards in higher education has become a hot topic. But grading standards in primary and secondary education have received...
The Open Classroom: Schools without Walls Became All the Rage during the Early 1970s. Were They Just Another Fad?
LIKE AUTOMOTIVE MODELS, WOMEN'S hemlines, and children's toys, pedagogical fads come and go, causing an immediate stir but rarely influencing teaching practice in any significant way. The notion that every innovation dreamed up by reformers inside...
The Race Connection: Are Teachers More Effective with Students Who Share Their Ethnicity?
In the mid-1960s, an acquaintance of mine was a young, timid teacher beginning her career in a virtually all-black high school on the South Side of Chicago. Even to this day, she recalls two events from that period. On one occasion, she saw a burly...
The Sun Sets on the West: Today's Social Studies Experts Preach an Anti-Western Ideology
The 9/11 terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon led to a revival of patriotic feelings across the nation. Yet the mood was quite different among prominent experts within the social studies field. In the pages of Social Education...
Tough Love: The Value of High Grading Standards
In my high school, rumor had it that Richard Brockhaus was the toughest grader in the state. Others disagreed. They insisted it was the whole country. When as a senior I finally braved his Advanced Placement calculus course, Dr. B did nothing to...
Uncivil War: A Bloodless Account of a Bitter Battle
California Dreaming: Reforming Mathematics Education by Suzanne M. Wilson Yale University Press, 2003, $29.95; 320 pages. California's "math wars," the struggle over what is sometimes called the "new New Math," illustrate all the ills and...
Voucher Research Controversy: New Looks at the New York City Evaluation
"Principal Stratification Approach to Broken Randomized Experiments: A Case Study of School Choice Vouchers in New York City," "Comment," and "Rejoinder" By John Barnard, Constantine E. Frangakis, Jennifer L. Hill, and Donald B. Rubin; "Comment"...