Default Lines for eSchool News, print edition, Jan. 1, 2009—According to legend, President John F. Kennedy sometimes would tell visitors to the Oval Office, “I certainly agree. Now, let’s see if the government agrees.”


It was the 35th president’s way of alluding to the shadow that falls between the idea and the reality. It’s not likely to be different for our 44th president.


Nobody knows what reality will bring, but oh, what a difference a day makes—Tuesday, Jan. 20, that is: Inauguration Day. Nowhere is the distinction clearer than in the President-elect’s ideas for education.


After eight years of “assessment by autopsy”—the approach...

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