Hoover ranks 2011’s best and worst moments in education: short on education policy, heavy on politics

What were the best and worst moments in education this year? The Hoover Institution’s Koret Task Force on K-12 Education has ranked them for you.

At the top of the best list is “reinvigorating school choice via opportunity scholarships and vouchers.” And the year’s worst moment is the “misreporting of the Atlanta Public Schools' cheating scandal” and, somehow, not the actual scandal itself.

“This list indicates that several positive developments led to greater parental choice, system transparency and teacher accountability; however, “the worst” events indicate that there remains considerable room for improvement,” according to the task force.

However, nearly every item had more to do with politics than education policy. Number two on the worst list: “Bungling of reauthorization of No Child Left Behind by a slowpoke Congress and a Constitution-oblivious president.” And unions were a factor in four of the ten items--they were on the best list when they were defeated and on the worst list when they weren’t.

This is the second year the team has put together the five best and five worst events for the year “to inform the public and shape education reform in the upcoming year.” The task force is an eleven member group that mostly contains Hoover Institution, but also two Brookings scholars.

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