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Which Manifesto Would Obama Have Signed?

Ap080503036099_2Only in a really slow week could the education blogs have spent so much time debating two ultimately unimportant documents put out by different education coalitions -- or would New York Times columnist David Brooks have deigned to weigh in on the situation -- sort of.   

In his Times column (Obama, Liberalism and the Challenge of Reform), Brooks uses the dual proclamations to ask the question we've all been asking about whether Obama is a reformer or not. 

He notes the less reform-minded tone of Obama's more recent speeches, and that Obama's education plan is less extensive or detailed in the areas of accountability and teacher performance than in many other areas. 

At this point, I think it's clear that Obama isn't really running as an education reformer anymore, which will please some supporters and trouble others. 

He wasn't all that far right to start.  He moved left to beat Clinton and will be pressured to move even further left to maintain the support of teachers and win in the general election.  At that point, it'll be a mighty struggle for him to tack towards the middle again. 

Which is too bad,  because  public education still needs a big kick in the pants if it's ever going to get the love  support it wants.


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Didn't Arne Duncan sign both?

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