Opt-Out or Cop-Out? The great debate

A growing number of parents, educators, and school administrators are calling for a local "opt-out" from state tests and accountability systems. Mike Petrilli, Flypaper's own editor, is one of them; he is convinced that there are some schools, perhaps schools that are trying to do something different, that serve a unique population, or are high performing, that could benefit from the opt-out. After floating the opt-out idea in an exchange with Deborah Meier over at Education Week, he tested it out on some fellow ed reformers—and was told his opt-out was a cop-out.

So yesterday, the Thomas B. Fordham Insitute and Democrats for Education Reform (DFER) cohosted a lively discussion on the opt-out/cop-out, featuring Fordham's Mike Petrilli, DFER's Charles Barone, the Center on Reinventing Public Education's Robin Lake, the National Council of La Raza's Delia Pompa, and the National Association of Charter School Authorizers's Nelson Smith, with Bellwether's Andy Smarick moderating.

Twitter was alive with commentary. Here's the play-by-play.

Mike got it started by making a shocking revelation:

Then he outlined his idea:

Moderator Andy Smarick pushed it over to Charles Barone, but not without a little commentary of his own:

The other panelists are skeptical.

Mike got back up swinging:

Charles Barone was full of witty comebacks:

The money moment:

So did Mike convince anyone to give his idea a shot?

In the end,

So did Mike convince you? Watch the event and let us know!

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