The staggering impact of COVID-19 on American lives and the economy was understandably the central issue in the first presidential debate and the vice presidential debate. But somehow, critical questions around education were absent in both debates. In fact, according to transcripts of both debates, the candidates used the word “school” fifteen times, but not always to describe K-12 education. The word “education” itself was stated just three times.
Clearly, this is a school year like no other. A recent Education Week analysis found that 74 percent of the 100 largest school districts in the United States opted exclusively for remote learning, dramatically impacting the education of over 9 million students. At the same time, increasing our nation’s educational achievement is a persistent challenge. The 2018 Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) revealed that American students performed above average in reading, ranking 13th just behind Sweden and New Zealand, but