Category: Uncategorized

By Mike Klein What’s in the Maryland water?  A student performance analysis that contains encouraging news about Georgia also leads to the inescapable conclusion that Maryland has really gotten its act together during the past decade.  In a comparison of 2003 and 2011 students, Maryland led the nation in fourth and eighth grade reading improvement and it also led in eighth grade math. Comprehensive data from the Atlanta-based Southern Regional Education Board (SREB) also shows Georgia fourth and eighth graders made great strides during the same eight-year span.  Georgia students did not lead the region or nation in any category but cumulatively, Georgia students posted some of the best overall gains achieved in any of SREB’s 16-member states. SREB used… View Article
By John Goodman Opponents of the Affordable Care Act (ObamaCare) have a nifty catch phrase: repeal and replace. Unfortunately, they are much clearer on “repealing” than they are on “replacing.” Until now. The Congressional Health Care Caucus has posted on their website a Health Contract with America, fashioned by yours truly.  I conducted a Capitol Hill briefing on the subject and you can find more details at the National Center for Policy Analysis (NCPA) website. Let’s hope every candidate for office this fall endorses the Contract. Here are the main ideas: Tax Fairness. The federal government should give everyone the same tax relief for the purchase of private health insurance, regardless of where it is obtained — through… View Article

Checking Up on Health

By Benita M. Dodd June 5, 2012 – Doomed to failure: Health insurance exchanges required in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) won’t work, won’t increase access to affordable health care, and won’t improve health outcomes or increase value, according to a new Galen Institute study. The paper by Rita E. Numerof, Ph.D., entitled, “What’s Wrong with Health Insurance Exchanges,” explains the problems states will face if they go down the path of creating PPACA health insurance exchanges. The exchange requirements will result in the creation of administrative behemoths that will limit individual choice and drive up costs, just the opposite of their intent. Numerof describes in detail why the state insurance exchange requirements are unrealistic and burdensome.… View Article

Education Reform for the Digital Era

By Eric Wearne While many books, websites, and events exist to catalog new concepts in online education, the Thomas B. Fordham Institute’s Education Reform for the Digital Era offers both a discussion and some practical solutions.  First, the editors, Checker Finn and Daniela Fairchild, describe three barriers to change which currently hinder online learning: Interest groups that try to either “capture the potential of technology to advance their own interests or to shackle it in ways that keep it from harming those interests”; The governance and financing structure of the current public school system; and, Issues of organizational capacity within the current public school system. The authors of the various chapters outline ways to address all three issues. First, regarding… View Article

Checking Up on Health

Health Policy Briefs: Posted May 15 Compiled by Benita Dodd Water, water everywhere, but …: According to the World Health Organization, an estimated 780 million people still lacked safe drinking water in 2010. On Monday, May 21, more than 400 attendees are expected to attend, “Sustaining American Leadership in Global Health and Water,” described as “a major conference on how the United States, even in the midst of fiscal austerity and political division, can best advance the world’s health.” Hosted by three Atlanta-based groups – the World Affairs Council of Atlanta, CARE USA and the Center for Strategic and International Studies – the daylong event at the Ritz-Carlton in Buckhead will include discussions on the special place of water and… View Article
By Mike Klein Fulton Science Academy’s middle school will try to remain open this fall in Alpharetta even after the state board of education denied its state charter application on Thursday.  The Academy was already rejected by Fulton County last December so it does not have another public school option. “Our only viable option right now is to go to a tuition-based private school model which is not our first choice because then it won’t be open to everybody in the public,” board member Angela Lassetter said in a hallway interview just outside the state board meeting room. Moments earlier Lassetter and two other Fulton Science Academy parents asked board members to wait another month before voting to approve or… View Article
Atlanta — Ahead of Georgia’s July 31 regional referendum on a penny transportation sales tax, the Georgia Public Policy Foundation will host “Getting Georgia Going,” a Leadership Breakfast at 8 a.m. on Wednesday, May 23, at Cobb County’s Georgian Club.   Reason Foundation transportation policy analyst Baruch Feigenbaum will unveil a study of the state of transportation in Georgia, focusing on the transportation project list for metro Atlanta, and discuss “Getting Georgia Going” into congestion relief and mobility. Feigenbaum, a resident of metro Atlanta, has a diverse background researching and implementing transportation issues including public-private partnerships, high-speed rail, highway funding, land use, government spending and ports. Feigenbaum, who has a master’s degree in City and Regional Planning with a… View Article
By Mike Klein Cherokee Charter Academy almost never happened.  Last spring it seemed possible – maybe even probable — that Cherokee Charter would never open because of a state Supreme Court decision.  What a difference a year makes.  Governor Nathan Deal will visit the school Thursday morning when he signs legislation to create the structure for a new state charter schools commission. “We’re very excited that not only is the Governor pro-charter but he is coming to our school to sign House Bill 797,” said Cherokee Charter Principal Vanessa Suarez.  “At the end of the day, all politics aside, we are here for the kids.  We are here for our students that want a choice.” This signing ceremony could… View Article

Checking Up on Health

Health Policy Briefs: May 1, 2012 Compiled by Benita Dodd Health care reform in remission: If it seems to you that health care policy is in limbo, you’re right. Most legislatures and policy-makers are adopting a wait-and-see attitude. Everyone is waiting for the U.S. Supreme Court ruling on the constitutionality of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare. Nowhere is that more evident than in Georgia, which has seen no action and little interest after a law passed last year that would allow health insurers in Georgia to sell insurance policies from other states. The flexibility was expected to make health care coverage more affordable for Georgians. Writing for Georgia Health News, Andy Miller notes:… View Article

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