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DWP June Newsletter, Issue V: School Choice

Photo by Sam Balye on Unsplash

Happy Pride Month! After a demanding few months dominated by preparing and reviewing for our EdD comprehensive exams, the DWP team is back for a June newsletter production around school choice. To start off, let’s talk about the looming elephant in the room — school choice is often very polarizing. Advocates on both sides of the aisle fiercely champion their respective causes and rarely engage in dialogue that advances mutual understanding of the opposing group’s point of view. To move away from the tyranny of or and embrace the inclusive power of and is no easy task. Our hope for this space is to always highlight a variety of positions by modeling healthy dialogue and respect for civic learning.

For this month’s newsletter, Sarah L. Evans had the privilege of interviewing Nathan Hoffman, Director of State Policy and Legislative Strategy for the American Federation for Children. Nathan is Chicago based and primarily supports AFC’s legislative efforts in Illinois while simultaneously providing strategy for their national team. You can read the entirety of their interview here.

From our side, we included a few articles to elevate your school choice cocktail party banter (if there ever was such a thing). And finally, don’t forget to check out the opinion pieces that Jamie Zinck and John Boumgarden wrote. Thanks for reading and we hope you continue to share our work and provide feedback for our team.

School Choice Articles

If you know nothing about school choice, start with Bellwether Education Partner’s informative policy brief, Expanding Educational Choice Outcomes, which explores the emerging school choice trends in the wake of Covid-19. Their team provides a robust school choice landscape analysis and provides clear definitions of the various types of school choices and what impact each model has on funding streams.

The next article is dated; however, our team wanted to include The 74 Media’s 2017 coverage of the Illinois bipartisan legislation passage that led to student-based budgeting formulas and tax credit scholarships for the state of Illinois. Sarah and Nathan explore this piece of legislation in their interview as well.

The final piece is a quick introduction to Ashley Berner’s work around education pluralism. If you only have one minute to spare, start here with the teaser that the Johns Hopkins School of Education released about her research. But if time is no constraint, grab yourself a cup of coffee and dig into her full report which you can access over at the Manhattan Institute.

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