District Administration - July 2008 - (Page 30)

ADMINISTRATION & SUPERVISION SECURITY THE BY ZACH MINERS ISSUE SILENT With education getting short shrift this election season, where do Sens. McCain and Obama really stand on improving schools, and how might their plans impact your district? ORMER 2008 PRESIDEN tial hopeful Gov. Bill Richardson (D-N.M.) proudly declared during a Democratic debate in late 2007, “I want to be the education president.” You would be hard-pressed to find similar claims in the public statements of the current presumptive nominees—Sens. John McCain (R-Ariz.) and Barack Obama (D-Ill.). It might be an overstatement to say that education has not factored into their campaigns at all, but it hasn’t exactly loomed large either. “When people are losing their home through foreclosures or losing their jobs … it’s hard to get a focus on education,” 30 July 2008 news anchor and author Jim Lehrer said at the National School Boards Association annual conference in March. “The candidates are largely ignoring the issue.” In a rousing moment during a debate in February, Obama passionately stated, “We’re going to have to invest in infrastructure. We have to invest in science and technology. We have to vastly improve our education system. We have to look at energy, and the potential for creating green jobs.” Education has recently enjoyed some increased popularity through hot-button issues like the federal No Child Left Behind law and merit pay, but when framed in such lofty rhetoric, it has functioned more like a political middle child—sandwiched between other things and rarely getting the undivided attention it deserves. Compare the numbers. In a 2000 Harris poll, 25 percent of Americans identified education as one of the two most important issues for the government to address, but by 2007 that percentage had dropped to only seven. And in a 2000 Gallup poll, about 17 percent of Americans saw education as “the most important problem” facing the country. For the same poll in early 2008, that number was down to 3 percent. Polls can be highly subjective and biased, but they do beg the question: If education was ever truly a problem, it must not be anymore—right? District Administration

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of District Administration - July 2008

District Administration - July 2008
Contents
Editor’s Letter
Letters
News Update
Curriculum Update
Administrator Profile
Conversations
Getting Mobile
School Supplies on a Budget
The Silent Issue
How Well Does This Web Site Work?
New Products
Management Books
Speaking Out
Calendar of Events
Research Center

District Administration - July 2008

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