In our story about the transition this week, David, Michele and I mention a meeting among the Obama transition officials and some education groups, including the Learning First Alliance, which includes major education groups representing teachers, school board members, and school executives. They talked about federal spending on education and the effects of the recent economic meltdown on schools.
I also heard that in that meeting the transition team was curious about what kinds of federal research projects would be useful for states and educators. In his campaign education proposal, Obama pledged to double spending on education research and development by the end of his first term. You can read his most recent education proposal, which doesn’t specifically mention research, here.
It’s tough to say whether the financial resources will be available for that kind of investment, but obviously, research is on the transition team’s radar screen.
And education researchers may prove central to some of the major education policy questions the Obama administration will have to address, including how to improve assessments used under the No Child Left Behind Act (something Obama talked a lot about on the campaign trail). And the Bush administration’s Reading First program looks as if it’s going to be eliminated in fiscal 2009, so research may play a key role in defining what type of program replaces it.”(For more background on Reading First, take a look at this story).