Policy

Education

Human beings are magnificent. We were born with a God-given ability to learn and the capacity to grow. As Aristotle put it, “All men by nature desire to know.” Education is broader than any one school system. It’s a series of opportunities to learn, which should be delivered in ways that allow us to meet the unique needs of children. The growing diversity of our student population requires an equitable education for every child, which contemplates both productive citizenship and employment and which is delivered by the best teachers – whoever they are.

This vision for education requires humility and the pursuit of good ideas – wherever they come from. We can achieve this by empowering parents to create learning paths as unique as the student, rejecting approaches that undermine decision-making authority of those closest to the student, respecting taxpayers as owners of the public education system, and protecting the marketplace of options and the innovators who contribute to it. Education is necessary because each individual has the potential to accomplish great things. Education should reflect these truths, and we believe it can.

Policy

Education

Human beings are magnificent. We were born with a God-given ability to learn and the capacity to grow. As Aristotle put it, “All men by nature desire to know.” Education is broader than any one school system. It’s a series of opportunities to learn, which should be delivered in ways that allow us to meet the unique needs of children. The growing diversity of our student population requires an equitable education for every child, which contemplates both productive citizenship and employment and which is delivered by the best teachers – whoever they are.

This vision for education requires humility and the pursuit of good ideas – wherever they come from. We can achieve this by empowering parents to create learning paths as unique as the student, rejecting approaches that undermine decision-making authority of those closest to the student, respecting taxpayers as owners of the public education system, and protecting the marketplace of options and the innovators who contribute to it. Education is necessary because each individual has the potential to accomplish great things. Education should reflect these truths, and we believe it can.

Important links:

Research & Insights

A summary of Utah’s education choice options (and how they help depoliticize the classroom)

What does Utah’s current education choice landscape look like? The range of education choice programs and policies include vouchers, tax credits and tax credit scholarships, public school choice, and a diverse blend of taxpayer-funded online options.

History, memory and the importance of reflecting on 9/11

As we reflect upon September 11, 2001, consider the history and the memory of the day. Both are important – and combined, they argue that we as grateful Americans must do a better job of teaching our past to the future citizens of this Republic.

Civics can help solve the problems of surging COVID cases, hospitalizations

If we are to do better in the future and maintain the American experiment in self-governance, it will be at least partly due to improved civics education.

The core concepts of critical race theory

This post informs readers about the main ideas of critical race theory by describing them in the words of critical race theorists, without intending any commentary on those ideas. The descriptions below should not be viewed as either critique or endorsement of the ideas described.

Protecting against politicizing the classroom: A Q&A on curriculum transparency

“There is no one silver bullet to defeating the rise of politics in the classroom, but academic (curriculum) transparency would put a decisive stop to the ability of schools to smuggle controversial content in absent parental awareness.“

Mask mandate uproar is a civics lesson in real time

Whatever the next mask mandate dispute or controversy may be, it should remind us of the importance of understanding how our government works. The more we lose that understanding, the more that mask mandates and similar issues will feel like the least of our worries.

Learning about America through primary sources: The Federalist Papers

The Federalist Papers are a civics education in and of themselves. Written with the intent to explain particulars in the Constitution, the collection of essays helps readers today understand the mechanisms found within the Constitution and the political and philosophical justification for them.

State board of education meeting makes case for curriculum transparency

The win-win potential of curriculum transparency is important, since survey data suggests that parents and teachers are on the same page when it comes to things like civics and history education – where classroom politicization is most likely to occur.

A system ‘where money follows the children, not schools’: A Q&A with Allison Sorensen

“Education policy is one of the things we tend to play a game of ‘whack-a-mole’ much too often,” Sorensen says. “The reality is we could solve a lot of these problems by creating a more market-based system where the parent and child become real consumers of education rather than education being dictated by your ZIP code.”

‘It’s better to aim high’: Q&A on Utah State School Board’s revision of social studies standards

States with “exemplary” civics and history standards typically include four elements. This is the conclusion from a Sutherland Institute Q&A with Fordham Institute senior researcher David Griffith, who co-authored a recent analysis of every state’s civics and history standards, in which Utah rated “mediocre.”

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