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Why Are the Public Schools Failing and What Can Be Done?
Thursday, July 5, 2001

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Held at The Independent Institute Conference Center

Richard K. VedderRichard K. Vedder
Senior Fellow, The Independent Institute. Author, Can Teachers Own Their Own Schools?
John D. MerrifieldJohn D. Merrifield
Professor of Economics, University of Texas, San Antonio Author, The School Choice Wars

American children learn less than they did 30 years ago, and even where there are signs of improvement, they are small. Many high school graduates—90 percent of whom attended government-operated public schools—lack the skills needed in today’s knowledge-intensive workplace. Parents and educators have long recognized the shortcomings of the public school system, but their efforts to reform it have failed. Are school vouchers and charter schools the answer? What about teacher-owned schools? What other reforms might make schools more innovative and accountable to parents? Education experts Richard Vedder and John Merrifield examined new strategies for achieving educational excellence.

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