Editor's note: This is the first essay of a three-part series that examines the major challenges facing education reformers. The author adapted these essays from his keynote address at the Yale School of Management’s Education Leadership Conference in April.
I voted for President Barack Obama twice and pulled the lever for Hillary Clinton last fall. I also know Education Secretary Betsy DeVos and was one of the few folks to support her nomination.
I’ve worked with business groups in New York and moms and dads in New Jersey to raise the bar for our kids. I worked on New Jersey’s teacher evaluation framework and helped pass its tenure law TEACH NJ with the state’s teachers unions. I’ve supported public charter schools alongside the thousands of New York and New Jersey families whose children fill them.
I grew up in the same neighborhood Freddie Gray did in Baltimore, and I went to private school on a scholarship, so I also support vouchers and tax credits, fiercely.
All of this is to say I believe in education reform, in all its flavors, and I’ve worked with all sorts of people, from all walks of life and both political parties, to make it...