Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Most Americans want schools to stay the same; unions seem to succeed in anti-reform message

Fewer Americans Back Obama’s Education Programs
By Dakarai I. Aarons
Education Week
August 25, 2010

Support for President Barack Obama’s education agenda is slipping among Americans, according to a poll released today of the public’s attitude toward public schooling.

The survey, conducted by Phi Delta Kappa International and the Gallup Organization, reports that just 34 percent of those polled would give the president an A or B when grading his performance on education during his first 17 months in office, compared with 45 percent in last year’s poll, which covered the president’s first six months in office. ("Obama School Ideas Getting Good Grades," Sept. 2, 2009.) The president’s grades fell not just among Republicans surveyed, but also among Democrats and Independents, who increasingly gave Mr. Obama grades of C or lower.

Poll respondents, for example, took a decidedly different tack than the president and U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan when it comes to turning around low-performing schools. When asked what was the best solution, 54 percent said the school should remain open with the existing teachers and principal and receive outside support...

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