This week Mitt Romney released the plan for his prospective education policy, titled “A Chance for Every Child.” As the New York Time emphasizes in its reporting, there isn’t a great deal of daylight between elite policy prescriptions for education across the two main political parties. Both parties have a similarly apocalyptic view of the failures of our educational system, particularly when it comes to minority achievement, and both parties are working to reform teachers unions and increase charter schools and student choice.
Romney admittedly goes farther than Obama would in this direction with his proposal that poor and special needs students would be able to take their allotted schooling funds to any school they choose, including “digital courses”. The plan also pushes back on the federal drive towards accountability that has characterized education reform for the past decade (e.g. No Child Left Behind).
We are at a point at which the potential for educational services seems a great deal higher than what we’re currently getting, and although Romney’s plan, as one would expect, doesn’t allocate more funds for the education sector (and may take some away), a push towards experimentation on the demand side (if met by responsible and capable education providers) could be the kick in the butt our system needs.