December 16, 2008

Obama's Education Secretary

Marc Comtois

Considering everything, Arne Duncan looks like a decent selection for Education Secretary. Dan Lips explains:

Mr. Duncan is known as one of a handful of innovative, reform-minded big city schools chiefs. How that will translate to the national level remains to be seen. Conservatives should be heartened that Mr. Duncan recognizes the need for local leadership and innovation. And that he supports amending federal policy to grant states greater flexibility and autonomy. Yet given his support for sharp federal spending increases, it is unclear how well the Secretary translates local lessons to the federal level.

What is clear is that Mr. Duncan's past work has earned applause from school reformers. He supports charter schools, public school choice, and merit pay for teachers and school leaders. Duncan also supports holding schools accountable for results and maintaining transparency about school performance through public reporting.


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Alert Justin! Another centrist pick by Obama for the Cabinet. This is surely a sign of Obama's leftist plans for world domination by dictatorship of the proletariat.

Posted by: Pragmatist at December 16, 2008 3:48 PM

Dare we dream?

Posted by: John at December 16, 2008 4:09 PM

We dare dream, but as Reagan said, "trust but verify."

From what I've read, the teachers unions are even more tyrannical in Chicago than they are here. If so, this guy would never have lasted as a true reformer - so he's probably a political operative that talks a good game to the public but doesn't really accomplish anything because to do so would disturb the union power brokers... think Peter McWalters with a larger school system.

I hope I'm wrong about this. But the prospect of a Democrat politician really being concerned about the best interests of children and so willing to really take on the teachers unions and their money just seems too hard to believe.

Posted by: Tom W at December 16, 2008 7:05 PM

If I remember correctly, under the No Child Left Behind Law, 8 under performing Chicago schools had complete teacher (200 teachers) and support staff replaced including (7) principles in 2008. Basically they all got the ax!

So Tom W your worrying about Arne Duncan I think is much to do about nothing!

See supporting link:

Posted by: Ken at December 16, 2008 8:55 PM

I've been encouraged by some of Obama's cabinet picks as well. It could also just be a ploy to create an illusion of bipartisanship in high-profile positions that the public would see it, while he puts left-wing radicals and wackos in the bureaucracy to screw things up behind the scenes. Time will tell.

Posted by: Will at December 17, 2008 12:33 AM

All you people worrying about the "trick" behind Obama's cabinet selections remind me of the scene between General Custer and Little Big Man in the film of the same name. Little Big Man presents the precise truth to Custer whose nature is too devious for him to believe it. Consequently, Custer rides into Little Big Horn and he and his troops are wiped out. The plain truth is that Obama is not a Leftist and his cabinet appointments are exactly as they appear; or as Freud said, "Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar."

Posted by: OldTimeLefty at December 17, 2008 9:10 PM
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