Thursday, June 9, 2016

CURMUDGUCATION: Back to the Children's Table

CURMUDGUCATION: Back to the Children's Table:
Back to the Children's Table

Do you remember?

It was going to be our year. Education-- the issue, the American institution, the highly contested battleground of policy, politics, and pedagogy-- was going to be on the front burner. Presidential politics would be the Big Event, and education was going to be seated at the Big Table.

Lots of folks thought so. Jeb! Bush had spent ages first fine-tuning his education organization as a Florida-based group, and then scaled it up so that he would have a national profile built around his aggressive and forward-thinking reform of public education. He mounted all sorts of clever PR pushes like Learn More Go Further to help push his education cred into the public eye. He even stepped down from running the Foundation for Excellence in Education, which in retrospect is kind of cute-- like a candidate for governor who resigns from his job as watchman at the junkyard because he doesn't want to look like he's getting an unethical advantage. Jeb! was ready to ride the Big Education Wave right to the White House.

Campbell Brown thought it was our year. Her website/advocacy group/hobby business The 74 Million was poised to ride the wave-- education was going to leading the parade down Pennsylvania Avenue and Brown was going to be there waiting for it, staking out the eduterritory so that she could set the proper agenda. She was going to be a king-maker; everyone who wanted to be President would have to talk about education, and everyone who wanted to talk about education would have to talk to her.

And if we're being hones, we can't fault Brown or Bush for what now looks like childlike faith. At 
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