Judicial Watch is suing the U.S. Department of Education to obtain information about a costly and ineffective program implemented during the Obama administration. From the organization’s website:
Judicial Watch announced today that it filed a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit against the Department of Education seeking records and emails on the department’s failed $7 billion School Improvement Grants (SIGs) program under the Obama administration and its effects on vouchers and school choice policy. Judicial Watch brought the action in the United States District Court for the District of Columbia (Judicial Watch v. U.S. Department Education (No. 1:17-cv-01021)).
The lawsuit was filed after the Department of Education failed to respond to an April 10, 2017, FOIA request seeking:
·Any records or emails discussing the potential implications for federal voucher or school choice policy in light of the anticipated conclusions of the [Department of Education] January 2017 Report “School Improvement Grants: Implementation and Effectiveness.”
The School Improvement Grants (SIGs) are awarded by the U.S. Department of Education to state education agencies under the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965. They were reauthorized in the No Child Left Behind Act in 2002, and became a key part of President Barack Obama’s education policy. The program’s goal was to improve student achievement at hundreds of the lowest-performing schools in the country.
Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton says revealing these records will show Americans how “the billions of dollars funneled into public education programs did nothing to help children learn.” Let’s hope Judicial Watch gets the word out, and that the American Enterprise Institute’s Andy Smarick is correct in saying this program’s failure could ultimately end up being a huge boon for school choice.
IN THIS ISSUE:
- CHARTER: A Massachusetts charter school is helping at-risk kids to stay in school and graduate.
- MISSISSIPPI: Empower MS is ramping up efforts to get more school choice in Mississippi.
- NEVADA: Republicans in the Nevada legislature are blaming one another over the state’s education savings account program failing to get funding.
- DeVOS: U.S. Education Secretary Betsy DeVos reminds charter schools they’re not the be all and end all when it comes to education choice.
- GETTING PERSONAL: Shane Vander Hart explains why we should look before we leap on the “personalized learning” craze.
- MAINE: Schools across Maine are embracing the “proficiency-based learning” trend.
- e-ducation: The Brookings Institution analyzes “The Promises and Pitfalls of Online Education.”
- HEART DISEASE: More education is good for your heart, research shows.
- UNION: Teachers in Chicago’s charter schools, already unionized, vote to unify with the Chicago Teachers Union.
- CLASSROOM POLITICS: A New York City student says a teacher called President Donald Trump a “racist” and “dictator” during class.
- UNION DUES: The National Right To Work Foundation is asking the U.S. Supreme Court to hear a case involving forced teacher union dues.