Uncle Sam and school choice

Oh how the blog gods have smiled down upon redefinED.

The 2012 Republican National Convention will be held in downtown Tampa this month – six blocks from the building that houses Step Up for Students and our humble blog. I received press credentials to cover the convention. And next week, as a lead-up to the event, we’ll be posting essays from some of the leading voices in school choice and education reform.

Here’s the line up: former U.S. Secretary of Education Margaret Spellings; Chester E. Finn, Jr., president of the Thomas B. Fordham Institute; Robert C. Enlow, president and CEO of the Friedman Foundation for Educational Choice; Joe Williams, executive director of Democrats for Education Reform; Michael B. Horn, executive director for education at the Innosight Institute; and Eva S. Moskowitz, founder and CEO of Success Academy Charter Schools.

With the RNC and November elections as a backdrop, we asked our contributors what – if anything – the federal government can do to promote school choice. It goes without saying that the responses are thoughtful, insightful and informative. They’re also diverse. They’ll give you plenty to think about – and even a few things to laugh at.

First up Monday: Secretary Spellings.

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BY Ron Matus

Ron Matus is director for policy and public affairs at Step Up for Students and a former editor of redefinED. He joined Step Up in February 2012 after 20 years in journalism, including eight years as an education reporter with the Tampa Bay Times (formerly the St. Petersburg Times). Ron can be reached at rmatus@stepupforstudents.org or (727) 451-9830. Follow him on Twitter @RonMatus1 and on facebook at facebook.com/redefinedonline.