Tag Archives: prodigy

Let's Make Vocational Programs a Bigger Slice of School Choice Menu

You probably assume a prolific blogging prodigy like myself eventually will head to a prestigious 4-year university — maybe even with Doogie Howser-like potential. But what if when I turn 16 some day my heart is set on a career as a plumber or a chef? You wouldn’t deny me that, would you? Writing for the America’s Future Foundation, Liam Julian of the Hoover Institution says we could take a big bite out of our high school dropout problem by engaging more students in vocational education programs — particularly those that integrate academics directly with students’ career aspirations, providing greater relevance to many teens (H/T Heritage Insider): Imagine a 17-year-old who does not want to attend college (or at least not right away); who finds parsing Macbeth maddeningly immaterial; who yearns to learn a practical skill and put it to use; who feels his personal strengths are being ignored and wasted; who is annoyed by his school’s lackluster teachers, classroom chaos, and general atmosphere of indifference. Too often, such a pupil has no other options. He has no educational choice.

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A Breakthrough in Building Student Brain Power for Colorado Success?

Maybe this isn’t the best time to bring up the subject — what, with the hot summertime sun baking our brain cells and the new school year still many weeks away for most kids. But I wanted to let you know about a Colorado nonprofit group creatively working to bridge an important gap sometimes overlooked in the world of education policy. Listen to Cognitive First Children’s Campaign founder and executive director Larry Hargrave explain on an iVoices podcast how his group seeks to make brain skills testing and intervention resources more accessible to Colorado students:

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New Friedman Report Highlights Why School Choice Benefits Teachers, Too

For some reason these last days of the school year have me busy. So I don’t have a lot of time to write — except that I wanted to point out something especially for teachers (who must be even busier than I am, I guess). A great new study released by the Friedman Foundation compares data from the U.S. Department of Education’s Schools & Staffing Survey and traces the attitudes of public school teachers vs. private school teachers on a whole host of issues. Out of the many results highlighted by co-authors Dr. Greg Forster and Christian D’Andrea, I wanted to bring your attention to a short few: Private school teachers are much more likely to say they will continue teaching as long as they are able (62 percent v. 44 percent), while public school teachers are much more likely to say they’ll leave teaching as soon as they are eligible for retirement (33 percent v. 12 percent) and that they would immediately leave teaching if a higher paying job were available (20 percent v. 12 percent)….

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