Economic success begins in the classroom—which does not bode well for the future of the U.S. economy. American students rank 25th in math and 21st in science, compared with students in 30 industrialized countries, and the Broad Foundation estimates $192 billion in lost income and taxes due to dropouts each year. So how do we fix American education?
Former Education Secretary Margaret Spellings, a leading enforcer of the federal No Child Left Behind law, says she worries a proposal to dismantle that system would be a step backward for the nation’s 50 million students. Spellings was a headliner at a Chamber Education 2020 speaker series in Nashville on Wednesday. Tennessee was one of the first states to ask the Obama administration for freedom from some of NCLB’s measures.
While the Tennessee state slogan, “America at its best” is one of pride and achievement, when we look to the current state of Tennessee’s education system we are reminded of a common catchphrase: “the good, the bad, and the ugly.”
Remember the adage, "the only constant is change"? True -- unless you're talking about education. The number of people in the education system who have actually embraced change is so completely dwarfed by the number who resist it, that the impact our innovators have had in moving the dial on student outcomes is almost inconsequential when you look at the overall data.
Last week, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s Institute for a Competitive Workforce hosted a retreat in Seattle to learn best practices of business engagement in education. Our delegation of eight members of the Chamber’s Education Report Card Committee was able to share our experiences from Nashville and gain insight into the efforts occurring in seven other states: Colorado, Connecticut, Iowa, Massachusetts, Montana, Texas and Washington.
Among recent top stories: the Obama Administration's move to remake K-12 education policy and significantly strengthen the hand of the federal government in the process. While policymakers on both sides of the aisle have been talking more than acting, the Administration has been diligently preparing its battle plans for an overhaul of No Child Left Behind. And it looks like they're about to do an end run around the Congress.
U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s President of the Forum for Policy Innovation Margaret Spellings issued the following statement today following the administration’s announcement that they will waive provisions of the No Child Left Behind (NCLB) law: “Today President Obama announced that his Administration will waive central provisions of the No Child Left Behind law providing flexibility to states in exchange for committing to high standards and a system of accountability that sets goals and measures progress toward those goals. While the U.S. Chamber of Commerce understands the desire to establish a bridge until Congress enacts a new law, now is not the time to turn our attention away from accelerating the pace of student achievement for all kids. Prior to NCLB, there was little focus on student achievement and scarce attention paid to closing achievement gaps.
President Barack Obama is set to replace key planks of former President George W. Bush's signature No Child Left Behind education law, allowing many schools to escape looming punishment if their states adopt a new set of standards. Under the new system, which Mr. Obama plans to announce Friday, states would qualify for a waiver from existing rules by requiring, among other things, that evaluations of teachers and principals be linked to the results of student tests and other measures of performance.
Less than half of high school graduates are ready for college-level math and less than a third are ready for college-level science in the United States, according to the ACT's Condition of College & Career Readiness report. The United States is clearly falling short in the areas of science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) education needed to produce the world-class talent that will be critical to fulfilling the requirements of the 21st-century workforce.
Back in 2005, Secretary of Education Margaret Spellings created a commission to craft a vision for the future of higher education. These days, she's running her own public-policy consulting firm and serving as a senior adviser to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. The Chronicle caught up with her this month.
The Central Florida Education Summit will be hosted by the Central Florida Partnership and sponsored by the Orlando Regional REALTOR Association, in partnership with the National Chamber Foundation, the Institute for a Competitive Workforce, and the Central Florida Public School Board Coalition.
U.S. News STEM Solutions 2013 will bring together business, education and government leaders who have long recognized the need to connect the dots between STEM education and careers. Adding to last year’s successful conference format, the second edition will give more dedicated time for these leaders to interact and collaborate.