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COVID-19 and K-12 Education
Daunting Challenges and Exciting Opportunities
Friday, May 22, 2020

The COVID-19 pandemic has posed unprecedented challenges for parents and educators alike.

Schools were closed down for the spring, and many are projected to remain closed for the fall. How will this affect children’s academic development? Some propose handing out “A grades” to each and every student, regardless of their development. Others argue for holding each and every child back for a whole year.

The common flaw in each of these impulses lies in these words: “each and every.” Not every child develops in the same way, and we must promote differentiated solutions that reflect this.

In this event, Independent Institute Research Fellow Dr. Vicki E. Alger and Independent Executive Director Dr. Graham H. Walker discuss the dangers present in “one-size-fits-all” approaches to augmenting K-12 education in light of COVID-19. Dr. Alger prefers a more parent-directed approach in which parents themselves can decide how best to augment their children’s learning. She will discuss Education Savings Accounts, hybrid programs that blend homeschool and brick and mortar school, and other solutions that champion choice and would respond nimbly to our current environment.

Graham H. Walker
Graham H. Walker is Executive Director and Assistant Editor for The Independent Review: A Journal of Political Economy at the Independent Institute. He received his Ph.D. in public law and government from the University of Notre Dame. Dr. Walker has served as Associate Professor of Politics at Catholic University of America, Assistant Professor of Political Science at the University of Pennsylvania, Visiting Scholar in Social Science at the Institute for Advanced Study (Princeton, NJ), Senior Research Scholar at the Witherspoon Institute, Headmaster at Oaks Christian School, Vice President for Academic Affairs at Oklahoma Wesleyan University, Visiting Scholar at the American Enterprise Institute, President at Patrick Henry College, Legislative Aide to former Congressman David Stockman, and Fellow at the Presidio Institute.
Vicki E. Alger
Vicki E. Alger is a Research Fellow at the Independent Institute and author of the Independent book Failure: The Federal "Misedukation" of America’s Children. She received her Ph.D. in political philosophy from the Institute of Philosophic Studies at the University of Dallas and she holds Senior Fellowships at the Fraser Institute and the Independent Women’s Forum, and she is President and CEO of Vicki Murray & Associates LLC. Dr. Alger is also the author of Lean Together: An Agenda for Smarter Government, Stronger Communities, and More Opportunities for Women, Short-Circuited: The Challenges Facing the Online Learning Revolution in California, and Not as Good as You Think: Why the Middle Class Needs School Choice, and she is Associate Producer of the documentary “Not as Good as You Think: Myth of the Middle Class School.”

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