US Opinion and Commentary

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Michelle Obama: This Issue Is Personal for Me

Posted October 11th, 2016 at 9:48 am (UTC-4)
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[W]hen I had the honor of meeting Malala Yousafzai, who was shot in the head just for trying to go to school, this issue got really personal for me….That’s why I decided to work on global girls’ education as first lady…

Michelle Obama: For girls, a heartbreaking loss — and an opportunity

Posted July 1st, 2016 at 9:27 am (UTC-4)
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Ralphina wakes up early each morning, cooks for her family, cares for her younger siblings, and goes to work at a local market — all before she even gets to school. But she still attends class each day, working especially hard in science and math so she can fulfill her dream of becoming a nurse.

How Schooling Can Save African Girls from Becoming Child Brides

Posted March 17th, 2016 at 2:00 pm (UTC-4)
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How can child marriages be stopped? The answer, research suggests, lies in improving girls’ access to basic education – and in changing school curricula so that both girls and boys realise women can contribute a great deal to their societies if they are not just married off and forgotten.

Common Core: Is America Over-testing School Children?

Posted October 28th, 2015 at 4:05 pm (UTC-4)
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“There is no argument that education is crucial to competing in the global economy. The argument is about how best to educate our kids, and how to make sure U.S. students are keeping up. The United States has experimented endlessly on the how. In 2001, former President George W. Bush proposed and Congress enacted “No Child Left Behind.” NCLB required each state to set their own educational standards, and then test aggressively to make sure their students were making the grade. While not directly involved, the federal government did require that any school getting federal funds give students an annual test to chart their progress. NCLB came under withering criticism and President Barack Obama introduced “Common Core,” standards which required schools receiving federal funding to agree to a set of national standards that all students, regardless of their state, are subject to. It’s not a federal program, but schools that take federal money must agree to the benchmarks and test students on their basic mastery of specific subjects, such as mathematics.