Monday, February 11, 2008

Petrilli on Huckabee as Sec of Ed

I've been meaning to write a post on why I believe Mike Huckabee would make an excellent Secretary of Education.

To my pleasant surprise, looks like I'm not the only one who is thinking this.

from Hoover fellow Michael Petrilli's article at National Review:

The governor, rare among Republican candidates, shows an affinity for education, and an ability to connect with parents and teachers. Like Bennett, Alexander, or Riley before him, he also knows how to communicate in today’s vernacular. And he has a strong record on education (save for some paleo views on evolution), even if his position on vouchers hasn’t always been crystal clear.

Huckabee’s folksy charm plays especially well with an education system that prides itself on its “niceness.” He has championed art and music education on the campaign trail — a boutique issue but one that illustrates his concern for the real stuff of the classroom and for kids who can do more than read and cipher. An ability to connect to, and inspire, what happens inside schools is the most important attribute for the next education secretary to have.

We stand at a unique moment in history. The last two decades have witnessed dizzying change and endless education reform, culminating with NCLB. A backlash against high standards, clear accountability, and greater choice is gaining steam. What’s needed from Washington is not more shoot-the-moon rhetoric and top-down mandates, but leadership. We need a credible education secretary who can effectively communicate this simple message: accountability and competition are here to stay.

In other words, education reform could use a kinder, gentler face — but one backed by steely principle.

Moreover, we need policies that give the nation’s governors — the true drivers of school change — the room to innovate again. That means updating NCLB to be friendlier to reform-minded leaders at the state and local level. As a former governor, Huckabee could lead this update with credibility, thoughtfulness, and poise.
I'll post more of my own thoughts on this later.

1 comment:

Stephen R. Maloney said...

You have a very good blog.

Hey welcome aboard the Straight Talk Express!

While Mike Huckabee continues to play the role of Don Quixote (or is he Sancho Panza?), John McCain should concentrate on our real antagonists, Senators Obama and Clinton. I hope he emphasizes the former, because it's looking as if Obama will get the nomination.

Recently, Sharon sent out the FoxNews picture of an Obama office with a Cuban/Che Guevara flag. Of course, Obama's aversion to the American flag is well-known. Today, I reprinted the picture on my blog, and I've been receiving a lot of response, including from the media. You can see the picture and the links at my blog:

Obama is the farthest Left candidate ever to run for President (Howard Dean and John Edwards notwithstanding), and his relationships with George Soros and will be fascinating as the campaign unfolds. Barack, prepare to be in a world of hurt between now and November 4.

I will re-visit your blog frequently.

steve maloney
ambridge, pa