Gov. Haley’s Education Plan: More Money

THE TROUBLE IS: MORE MONEY ≠ BETTER PERFORMANCE Last week Governor Haley unveiled her K-12 Education Reform Initiative for South Carolina. The governor’s new plan is consistent with most education improvement plans introduced in South Carolina in recent decades: it ignores the single most effective reform that could be enacted, school choice. Rather than pushing for […]

Rejecting Common Core – and the Structure that Made It Possible

  ‘NULLIFYING’ COMMON CORE WON’T MAKE IT GO AWAY, BUT A BILL NOW IN THE LEGISLATURE WOULD GIVE TAXPAYERS SOME SAY IN THE MATTER The first step toward removing Common Core requirements from the South Carolina education system – strangely enough – would have nothing directly to do with Common Core. A bill prefiled for […]

Can Common Core Be Stopped?

MAYBE, BUT IT MAY TAKE MORE THAN PASSING A LAW Opponents of Common Core, the nationalized set of academic standards currently being imposed on South Carolina public schools, are wondering how to stop it – or indeed if it’s too late to stop it. While four states refused to implement these standards in the first […]

What Will Our Children Learn Under Common Core? – Part II

DOES THIS SOUND LIKE A CURRICULUM YOU WOULD CHOOSE? In Part I of our analysis of Common Core-based curriculum material, we discussed some problematic lesson plans disseminated by Student Achievement Partners, a nonprofit organization founded by three contributing authors of Common Core State Standards. In the present analysis we discuss Common Core-aligned Homework/Test Questions and […]

Best & Worst of the General Assembly is Here

WONDER WHAT YOUR LAWMAKERS WERE UP TO IN 2013? IT’S ALL HERE. Our annual guide to the year’s legislative session, The Best & Worst of the General Assembly, has been published. To download your electronic copy, click here.  As in years past, we covered a large number of bills. Although it’s not feasible to analyze […]

S.C. Public Education & the Common Core Zeitgeist

A RECENT EDUCATION OVERSIGHT COMMITTEE MEETING SUGGESTS JUST HOW MUCH POWER WE’RE GIVING AWAY  “Security has asked me to advise that they are in attendance. If there are any outbursts from the audience, they will be escorted out of the meeting.” That’s how this week’s Education Oversight Committee (EOC) meeting was kicked off. In its […]

What Will Our Children Learn Under Common Core? – Part I

EDUCATION OR INDOCTRINATION? We recently laid out answers to some frequently asked questions about Common Core in South Carolina. To recap: Common Core is already being implemented in our state; it is a de facto federal education program; and given the power structure of our state government, it isn’t going to be easy to get […]

How “Waiving” NCLB Reinforced Federal Control

WE HATE TO SAY WE TOLD YOU SO, BUT WE DID In September 2011, a week after President Obama announced that states could apply for waivers from some No Child Left Behind provisions, we warned against accepting the notion that getting these waivers would return any real power over education back to the states. We […]

Income Mobility in South Carolina

HOW S.C. KEEPS ITS CITIZENS IN POVERTY The New York Times recently reported on a new study finding that income mobility in South Carolina is severely limited. Income mobility, as its name implies, refers to an individual’s ability to rise from lower income levels to higher ones (economists typically divide these levels into fifths). Coincidentally, […]

Reforms Pass in North Carolina … But Not Here

THE REASON HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH IDEOLOGY It’s a tale of two legislative sessions. In one state, lawmakers passed significant tax reform that lowers tax rates across the board, took a meaningful step towards school choice, and expanded Second Amendment rights. In another state, lawmakers talked a big game about government restructuring, reforming the […]