Issues and Ideas Forum, June 18, 2008

Listen to Expert Speakers Over Lunch

The Mackinac Center for Public Policy is pleased to host monthly Issues & Ideas Forums 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.

Legislators, staff, news media and other interested friends are cordially invited to the


“Improving Teacher Quality in Michigan”


Marc Holley
Doctoral Academy Fellow in public policy at the University of Arkansas


Wednesday, June 18, 2008


12:00 - 1:00 p.m.


Capitol Room, Radisson Hotel
111 North Grand Avenue, Lansing


Lunch is provided at no charge, with reservation.

Public education in Michigan is at a crossroads as test scores fall and expenditures rise. In addition to exploring the educational improvements that can occur by expanding school choice across the state, policymakers and community leaders should begin to infuse the system with market-based reforms such as merit pay, differential pay and alternative certification. These measures can improve the quality of the most important input into the educational system that schools can control — teachers.

Indeed, it is imperative that the state reconceptualize how it views teacher quality. It is time to reform how we recruit, train, reward and retain teachers. At the same time, we must begin to reconsider how we measure teacher quality, for the teachers we need are those who can raise student achievement.

An adjunct fellow with the Mackinac Center, Holley is a doctoral academy fellow in public policy at the University of Arkansas. His experience in education includes six years as a private school administrator and teacher and two years as an education policy analyst at the Office for Education Policy at the University of Arkansas Department of Education Reform. He has conducted program evaluations of merit pay and educational technology interventions, and has published numerous editorials, book reviews and scholarly articles for education policy think tanks and in peer-reviewed journals. Before his career in education, Holley served as a non-profit management consultant in the Peace Corps in Romania. Holley earned a bachelor’s degree in classics, cum laude, from Harvard University and a master’s degree in education administration and policy from the University of Georgia.

The luncheon begins promptly at noon. To make reservations for yourself and your guests, please call the Mackinac Center at 989-631-0900 by 5 p.m. on June 13, 2008.

The Purpose of the Issues & Ideas Forum

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. On occasion, these principles are most effectively conveyed by a single case study. 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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