Wednesday, August 28, 2013

50 Years After King's Dream -- Time to Wake Up

By Kevin P. Chavous
As appeared on Huffington Post "Black Voices" (August 28, 2013)

As our nation steps back to reflect upon the March on Washington and famous speech delivered by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., we all must challenges ourselves to question our nation's progress.

Fifty years later, how has our nation progressed? How have we evolved? How have we improved?

Dr. King's speech helped create momentum for the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which legally solidified the equality of African Americans in this country. All week, various events and activities are planned, including an anniversary march on August 28.

Like the 1963 march, the focus of the planned commemorative activities are jobs and justice. But what about education?

Monday, August 26, 2013

Obama to Louisiana Children: ‘You must remain separate and not equal’

By. Kevin P. Chavous

On Saturday, the Obama Administration sued to block Louisiana’s Scholarship Program. This unprecedented and uncalled for action is a direct attack on thousands of low-income children. AFC Press release (

As Adam Emerson, from Fordham summarizes it:


Because, according to the DOJ lawsuit, only a federal judge should be able to allow a poor black child to leave the failing school district. That’s right, it’s not up to the parent, but a federal judge.

Friday, August 16, 2013

The Thirteen Most Impactful #EdReform Twitter Feeds of 2013

By Kevin P. Chavous

Earlier this week you read my reaction to the list of “top” education policy Twitter feeds released by Fordham Institute’s Michael J. Petrilli. Michael based his list on Klout scores, and as a result the list was absent many ed reformers who have actually made an impact in the lives of countless children.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

NYC Families Gather to Demand More Educational Options

By Kevin P. Chavous

I had the opportunity to take part this weekend in StudentsFirstNY’s Parent Convention. The convention brought together hundreds of families and education choice activists from across New York City to discuss the best way to inspire policy changes that would lead to more quality educational options for New York children. 

Monday, August 12, 2013

Who are the real #EdReform Influencers?

By Kevin P. Chavous
Today, Michael J. Petrilli of The Fordham Institute published what he calls, "The Top Twitter Feeds in Education Policy." This is indicative of the problem with some in the education reform community -- let's pat each other’s back for superficial reasons, ignoring the real reason for education reform - helping children.
First, I want to say, I have nothing but the utmost respect for Michael, both personally and professionally, and his list includes some worthwhile education reform champions. But, as Michael explains, the list is based purely on "Klout" scores. Klout is a website that attempts to measure individual influence online, but as Mashable and other outlets have reported, Klout is hardly an accurate measure of social media impact.

More importantly, in the terms of education reform, the most important impact shouldn't be how much we Tweet one another, but how positive impact we're having the lives of children who deserve better educational options.

So while Michael will rely on computer algorithm to develop his list of "Top Twitter Feeds in Education Policy," later this week, I will be releasing the "Thirteen Most Impactful #EdReform Twitter Accounts of 2013." This list will include nominations from you of people whose work is changing the lives of children every day.

To nominate a Twitter account, email - including the name and twitter handle of your nominee or Tweet me your nominee at @KevinPChavous.

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Why school choice is succeeding

By Kevin P. Chavous

Michael Q. McShane wrote yesterday, “Why School Choice is Failing.” His thought provoking piece raised some very important points, but fails to illustrate how school choice is succeeding, the several solutions already in place to address his concerns, and how school choice advocates are laying the groundwork for even greater impact.

McShane’s issues boil down to three points: Filling excess capacity, encouraging high-quality schools to scale-up and creating new high-quality schools, the latter two McShane argues that school choice programs are “lousy at.”

The majority of us who are involved in the education reform movement are focused on advancing parental choice as central component of fundamental, meaningful, and impactful reform to provide children with better options that generate better educational outcomes. It’s both smart policy and a matter of social justice. However, when a child moves from a public school to a private school through an educational choice program, and receives the same failed outcome, that is not a success. And, this is where McShane has it right.

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Guided Reading

Check out some of the latest (and greatest) educational choice stories we are reading right now:

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

How do you like them apples? Matt Damon supports private education

Nearly two years ago to the date, Matt Damon flew into Washington, D.C. to speak at a “Save our Schools” rally. The groups who comprise “Save our Schools” are a who’s who of education organizations who have opposed every single reform over the past 30 years. The rally was against the education reforms underway in Washington, D.C. to help fix one of the nation’s most broken school districts. At the rally, Damon was the champion of public schools and skewered the “corporate reformer[s] who literally never taught anyone anything…” 

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Education Choice Topic of Conversation on Capitol Hill

This week education advocates, students, parents and lawmakers gathered on Capitol Hill to discuss the need for parents to have a say in their child’s education. The Alliance for School Choice had a front row seat at the table, as executive counsel Kevin P. Chavous was one of the panelists.