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Education Policy Op-Ed Op-Ed Contest

The Gas Pump is No Place for a Child to Play: The case for replacing 12th grade with universal Pre-K

This piece is the first prize winner of the 2019 Baines Report Op-Ed Contest. _ It’s the autumn of 1995 in a sleepy East Texas town. The principal of the local preschool stops by the store for groceries, when she notices a young child playing outside by the gas pumps. She rushes to the child’s […]

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Global Policy Studies & International Security

A Fight for Health and Education: The Real Brazil Protests

On Monday Brazilians took to the streets for another night of protests against government corruption and poor services. São Paulo, Brasilia and Rio de Janiero have been sites of protests and some violent police reactions over the past week. Headlines in the United States have described the protests as a fight against a 10-cent increase […]

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Education Policy

Invest in Texas’ Future

            When Ross Perot embarked on his crusade to fix the Texas education system in the 1980s, he said the state’s schools excelled in only three areas: drill team, band and football. To fix this, he helped craft and lobby for a sprawling education reform package that boosted state aid to poor districts, funded prekindergarten, […]

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Education Policy

No Easy Answers in Education Policy Reform

This summer I worked for the non-profit organization The New Teacher Project (TNTP), which is in the middle of a five-year contract with the Houston Independent School District to reform the human capital system of HISD. The changes happening at HISD quietly place the district in the center of the most controversial debates in education […]

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Immigration Policy

DREAM Act Means Broken Dreams for Americans

  In response to Allison Ramirez’ feature article titled, “Our Broken (Values) System” published October 26, 2011. President Reagan passed the Immigration Reform and Control Act which granted amnesty to around 2.8 million illegal immigrants in 1986. This legislation was intended to be a “one time only” deal to give legal residency to illegal immigrants already here in the United […]

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Immigration Policy

Documented or Not, They’re Texans

  In the September 22, 2011 Fox News-Google GOP Primary Debate, Texas Gov. Rick Perry stated, “If you say that we should not educate children who have come into our state for no other reason than they've been brought there by no fault of their own, I don't think you have a heart. We need to […]

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Immigration Policy

The Texas DREAM Act: Forcing the Taxpayer to Reward Illegal Behavior

  Is there a government prize for breaking the law in Texas?  The Texas DREAM Act forces the taxpayer to reward those who continue to break the law by illegally residing in the United States. Since being signed into law by Gov.  Rick Perry in 2001, the Texas DREAM Act has provided in-state tuition and need-based financial aid […]

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Immigration Policy

Our Broken (Values) System

  “I believe in the idea of amnesty for those who have put down roots and lived here, even though sometime back they may have entered illegally.” –          Ronald Reagan, 1984 debate with Walter Mondale Yes, you read that correctly: Ronald Reagan, the father of modern conservatism, in support of the A-word.  Conservative champions of our […]

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Misc

Valuing Diversity in Thought – and in Student Body

  Halfway through my first semester at the LBJ School, I have been impressed with the diversity of interests and strengths of my fellow students. I have felt challenged by my classes and supported by faculty and staff. At the same time, I have been disappointed in the amount of racial and ethnic diversity within […]

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Education Policy

From Schoolhouse to Courthouse

  Disrupting class used to land kids in the principal’s office or detention.  In Texas, however, more and more children are facing criminal prosecution, criminal records and hefty fines for acting out in school. It is estimated that at least 275,000 non-traffic tickets are issued to kids in Texas each year.  The vast majority of […]