Thursday, November 8, 2012

Obama Education Policy: Second Term Direction Still Not Clear

Obama Education Policy: Second Term Direction Still Not Clear:


Obama Education Policy: Second Term Direction Still Not Clear

In Rick Hess's eyes, President Barack Obama has a big choice to make.

"The president campaigned with a different face of education reform than what he championed during the first term," Hess, an influential education scholar at the American Enterprise Institute, said in an interview. "I'm curious as to whether what he said on the campaign trail is more reflective of what a second term will be or whether the first term will be reflected in the second term."

In other words, Barack Obama was reelected Tuesday night with huge support from teachers' union membersthat have so publicly clashed with his policies. He got that vote, in part, by stressing the softer part of his education agenda on the campaign trail. In speeches and debates, he sparred with Mitt Romney over the federal government's role in hiring teachers -- since Obama spent billions on teacher hiring as part of the stimulus bill -- and the importance of class sizes.

But Obama's first term also saw the creation of the Race to the Top program, which angered unions by requiring 

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