Federal Education Policy: An Economic Perspective

Apr 26, 2005Apr 27, 2005


Session One: Tuesday April 26th
Making the Grade: Accountability Policy and School Quality

Dr. Eric Hanushek
Hoover Institution of Stanford University

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Session Two: Wednesday, Aprils 27th
Higher Learning and Higher Prices: The Economics of College Tuition
Dr. Antony Davies
Duquesne University 

Through programs such as the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001, the leading school reforms in the United States revolve around strong accountability of schools with consequences for performance. But debate rages over the degree to which standards should dictate funding decisions, as well as the extent to which education policy should be the purview of the federal government. In this session, Dr. Hanushek will present policymakers with an economic perspective of this challenging topic, answering questions such as: Why are high-quality schools important to the national economy? What are the different policy approaches to improving school outcomes? How can we measure the results of these approaches? Is there any evidence about the effects of school accountability systems on outcomes?

While America's higher education system ranks among its greatest achievements, the cost of college has skyrocketed over the last several decades. For many families, these cost increases are difficult to absorb. As a result, policymakers from both sides of the aisle have sponsored legislation to control college costs through varying means. In this session, Dr. Davies will discuss the costs and benefits of college education, addressing: Why has the price of higher education increased so dramatically lately? Who stands to benefit from the varying approaches? What are the implications of these reform proposals on teachers, students, and the public?