The Education Gadfly

Arne Duncan carries nearly 40% of our Insiders' votes, soaring high above even his closest competition - Klein, Sebelius, Canada, and Darling-Hammond. But which one of these contenders will dare to pluck his wings? It might be Klein, given that our Insiders increased their support for him today, changing his percentage from 6.3% to 9.8%. Caroline Kennedy, Tim Kaine, Michael Lomax, Hugh Price, Tom Vilsack, Ray Mabus, and, yes, Oprah Winfrey, are all tied at 2%.

With the holiday lull, we don't expect to see many changes, but next week could bring some surprises - maybe even announcements. We will wait with bated breath here at Fordham.?? Enjoy the holiday - and Happy Thanksgiving!

The Education Gadfly

The Education Gadfly

Panel 3: The Way Forward

The Education Gadfly

Mike is scheduled to appear on CNN's American Morning on Tuesday. Be sure to tune in!

Education Trust and Achieve have it, and share it, here.

It's week three of Fordham's name-the-next-education-secretary daily tracking poll, and Chicago schools CEO Arne Duncan has moved into a commanding lead, with better odds of getting the job than the next five candidates combined. (At least that's according to our ten Washington insiders .) I've decided to be happy about it. While he's not the perfect choice--I really think a governor is better suited to move an agenda on Capitol Hill--he no doubt has reform instincts and a pretty good track record in Chicago. (His NAEP scores are at least as impressive at Joel Klein's, if not more so. What he seems to be lacking is a large press office to promote them nationally.) And being a close personal friend of the President's will surely help him get attention for the education issue.

Meanwhile, lurking in today's results is the specter of Linda Darling-Hammond, who makes the big board for the first time today. And keep your eyes on Kansas governor Kathleen Sebelius, a rising talent who is expected to get a chair at the Cabinet table. Will it be this one?

Other folks mentioned today: Tim Kaine, Hugh Price,...

Melody Barnes, whose comment on the Diane Rehm show sparked much speculation about Team Obama's position on testing and portfolios, is going to direct the Domestic Policy Council. Portfoliogate aside, I hear she's very good and has the right instincts on education. And let's all be thankful that this key job didn't go to Linda Darling-Hammond. (On the other hand, that means that LDH is still in the running (!!!) for education secretary.)

Oh sure, the economy is imploding and the President-Elect is considering a stimulus at least as large as what America's spends on schools in an entire year, but what we education wonks can't help but wonder is which way Obama will go on??k-12 policy. Maria Glod of the Washington Post tees up the issue, and Terry Moe hits it long in the Wall Street Journal.

Photograph by dalbera from Flickr

And so are the folks leading the Washington, DC and New Orleans school systems (hint: Michelle Rhee and Paul Vallas), said the former head of IBM in a recent CEO forum sponsored by the Wall Street Journal. Said forum also featured...Joel Klein. And James Comer. It's an interesting read; I wonder if any CEOs actually attended the session.