School & District Management Federal File

Interest Builds for McCain to Detail Education Views

By Alyson Klein — July 15, 2008 1 min read
  • Save to favorites
  • Print

Sen. John McCain has kept relatively mum about his education plans so far in his quest for the presidency. Although the Arizona Republican has touted his support for merit pay and school choice, education policy wonks still aren’t certain how he would handle such major issues as the reauthorization of the No Child Left Behind Act.

That may help explain the expectations that were being felt in education circles about the presumptive GOP nominee’s scheduled speech this week in Cincinnati at the annual convention of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People.

Lisa Graham Keegan, an education adviser for Sen. McCain, had told the Associated Press that the senator would discuss his support for merit-pay programs for teachers, and talk about how the federal government can ensure that low-income students at struggling schools have access to tutoring services.

“The senator is very impatient for kids to have interventions when they need it,” said Ms. Keegan, a former Arizona state schools chief.

Sen. McCain is not expected to release a detailed education proposal until the end of the summer. Even so, policy observers deemed the July 16 NAACP event worth watching because he has said so little about education on the campaign trail.

“He’s made a few statements about his principles and beliefs in education, ... but he’s a long way from having a plan that will guide what his administration will do, ” said Michael J. Petrilli, a vice president of the Washington-based Thomas B. Fordham Foundation, who served in the Department of Education during President Bush’s first term.

Sen. McCain’s presumptive Democratic opponent, Sen. Barack Obama of Illinois, has also released few details of his plan for the renewal of the NCLB law, although he does have some specific proposals on bolstering teacher quality and expanding access to pre-K programs.

In a speech this month to the National Education Association, Sen. Obama also reaffirmed his support for merit pay—drawing some boos. (See “NEA Delegates Block Private School Workers From Membership,” this issue.)

Sen. Obama was also scheduled to appear before the NAACP.

A version of this article appeared in the July 16, 2008 edition of Education Week

Events

This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Classroom Technology Webinar
Academic Integrity in the Age of Artificial Intelligence
As AI writing tools rapidly evolve, learn how to set standards and expectations for your students on their use.
Content provided by Turnitin
Recruitment & Retention Live Online Discussion A Seat at the Table: Chronic Teacher Shortage: Where Do We Go From Here?  
Join Peter DeWitt, Michael Fullan, and guests for expert insights into finding solutions for the teacher shortage.
This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Reading & Literacy Webinar
The Science of Reading: Tools to Build Reading Proficiency
The Science of Reading has taken education by storm. Learn how Dr. Miranda Blount transformed literacy instruction in her state.
Content provided by hand2mind

EdWeek Top School Jobs

Teacher Jobs
Search over ten thousand teaching jobs nationwide — elementary, middle, high school and more.
View Jobs
Principal Jobs
Find hundreds of jobs for principals, assistant principals, and other school leadership roles.
View Jobs
Administrator Jobs
Over a thousand district-level jobs: superintendents, directors, more.
View Jobs
Support Staff Jobs
Search thousands of jobs, from paraprofessionals to counselors and more.
View Jobs

Read Next

School & District Management 5 Things to Know About How the Culture Wars Are Disrupting Schools
Disruptions were more acutely felt in districts with more affluent and white students, but there weren't always clear-cut political lines.
6 min read
Illustration of neutral warning symbols, with two standing out in the colors red and blue.
filo/DigitalVision Vectors + EdWeek
School & District Management Divisive Politics Are Harming Schools, District Leaders Say
A new survey reveals how tough the politics are for some leaders, especially in the suburbs.
8 min read
Illustration of tug of war.
Illustration by Laura Baker/Education Week, SvetaZi, and iStock/Getty
School & District Management Leading a City School District Is Tough. A New Program Aims to Ease the Way
Its creators hope to drive down big-city superintendent turnover by preparing candidates for the stresses of leadership.
3 min read
Woman standing on a paper boat with a tsunami wave approaching.
iStock/Getty Images Plus
School & District Management 5 Tips for Switching From Snow Days to Remote Classes
Two district leaders say communication, flexibility, and adaptability are key to success.
4 min read
Close up of hands holding a smartphone and working at a laptop near a window showing a snowy day
iStock/Getty