Issues and Ideas Luncheon, February 2006

Listen to Expert Speakers Over Lunch

The Mackinac Center for Public Policy is pleased to host monthly Issues & Ideas Luncheons in Lansing. These luncheons, which feature experts on a diverse array of subjects, offer a forum that enhances and broadens the policy debate to include theoretical and philosophical ideals—and suggestions for achieving them.

News media, legislators, policy staff and interested citizens are cordially invited to the


“Education Myths”

Jay P. Greene
Department of Education Reform, University of Arkansas


Thursday, Feb. 9, 2006


12:00 - 1:00 p.m.


The Mackinac Room, 5th Floor, House Office Building
124 N. Capitol
Lansing, MI 48933


Lunch is provided at no charge, with reservation.

Conventional wisdom says that our public schools need a lot more money, that poor and immigrant children can't do as well as most other American kids, that high-stakes tests just produce "teaching to the test," and that vouchers do little to help students while undermining our democracy.

In his book, “Education Myths,” Jay P. Greene examines eighteen widely held beliefs about American education, and finds that they just aren't true. In addition to myths about class size and teacher pay, he debunks common views about certification ("certified or more experienced teachers are more effective"); graduation ("nearly all students graduate from high school"); draining ("choice harms public schools"); and a host of other hotly debated issues.

Greene's reasoned and accessible approach refutes each myth with relevant and reliable facts and figures, including a broad review of the research. He believes our schools can be significantly improved, and concludes the book with important recommendations that, once implemented, will help our schools achieve measurable and affordable success.

Jay P. Greene is a Senior Fellow at the Manhattan Institute and endowed chair and head of the Department of Education Reform at the University of Arkansas. His research was cited four times in the Supreme Court's opinions in the landmark Zelman v. Simmons-Harris case on school vouchers. His articles have appeared in numerous policy and academic journals, as well as in major newspapers.

Greene has been a professor of government at the University of Texas at Austin and the University of Houston. He received his B.A. in history from Tufts University in 1988 and his Ph.D. from the Government Department at Harvard University in 1995. He lives with his wife and three children in Fayetteville, AR.

The luncheon begins promptly at noon. Please make reservations for yourself or your guests by 5 p.m. on Monday, Feb. 6 by calling the Mackinac Center at (989) 631‑0900.

The Purpose of the Issues & Ideas Luncheon

The nature of the legislative process is such that public policy debates are often framed by specific constituencies and political pragmatism rather than by sound principles. By offering a forum for wide-ranging discussion, the Mackinac Center for Public Policy hopes to broaden the debate to include theoretical and philosophical ideals — and how to achieve them. The best interests of Michigan citizens can be served only when legislation incorporates our best understanding of legal, economic, psychological, moral and scientific principles.


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