Educational Updates

Books Across America

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“Books Across America”–for your reading pleasure.

Travels across America offer more riches than historic landmarks, spectacular scenery,  and famous buildings.  This wonderful compilation lists  fiction, nonfiction, and “famous option”  books for each of the 50 states.   In browsing through the list, I found many old favorites while also adding to my reading list.   Missouri’s literary choices  include George Hodgman’s Bettyville  for nonfiction and Paulette Jiles’s Enemy Women for fiction.  It’s no surprise that Mark Twain’s Huckelberry Finn  wins the “famous option” slot.  How many have you read?  Enjoy!

Check out 100 of the top rated  books in America at

School vouchers are not the answer

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Betsy DeVos is unquestionably the most controversial Secretary of Education we have seen in our lifetime.  Lacking any background in public education, either as a student, parent, or professional, she appears to have been chosen because of her family’s big pockets for funding congressional candidates.

Mrs. DeVos is not a fan of public education and is dedicated to developing a voucher system that will filter money from public schools to charter schools, including religious schools.  Funding religious schools with public funds represent a constitutional violation of the separation of church and state, but that does not concern her. She believes vouchers will greatly improve the quality of education for America’s children.

However, the growing evidence shows that she is wrong.   Vouchers are not offering the panacea she and other advocates claim.  Michael Hiltzik summarizes results of studies from across the country that show that many voucher students are actually performing less well than their public school peers.

This issue is important for us in Missouri because there is a strong push in Jefferson City to expand the voucher system in our state.  We need to collect all available evidence to use to counter this undesirable push for vouchers.  Instead, we need to focus on improving funding for public education.

Read the complete article by clicking this link!

– Summary was written by Dr. Ene-Kaja Chippendale