tv Key Capitol Hill Hearings CSPAN August 1, 2015 2:00am-4:01am EDT
for a hearing on the iran nuclear agreement. next, a look at the future of school choice including concerns about funding and other challenges and changing current education policy. from the heritage foundation, this is an hour. [ applause ]. >> thank you, john. and thank you, everyone for being here today, which today would have been friedman's 103rd birthday. the university of chicago nobel prize-winning economist is of course considered the father of the modern day school choice movement. 59 programs operate in 28 states and here in the district of columbia. these options whether vouchers, tuition tax credit scholarship
programs, or education savings accounts, which we're here to discuss today, provide families the opportunity to choose schools and learning options that meet their child's individual and unique learning needs. instead of being assigned to a school based on where their parents live these models of school choice and free people free children from assignment by zip code residential policies that bound them to a school in their neighborhood. milton friedman says school choice ensures children are free to choose and free to learn. it was in 1955 that friedman first outlined this concept of school vouchers. government administration of schools is neither required by the financing of education neuer justifiable in its own right in
a pro dominantly free enterprise society. in other words friedman argued we should separate the financing of education from the delivery of services. that is apparently choose where a child attends school. he operationalized this idea of financing the education from delivery of services through school vouchers. a set amount of dollars to school families instead of school districts. milwaukee, wisconsin became the first city to implement friedman's idea. and in 1991 established the milwaukee parental choice program. it was the first large scale k-12 championship program in the country. but friedman didn't stop thinking or tinkering with this idea of school vouchers when that happened. in an interview with the journal
"education next" in 2003, when friedman was 93 years old, he first professored up this idea. he said why not voucher for math in one place, english or science somewhere else. why should schooling be in one building. why can't children take some lessons at home with the ability of the internet. he was very forward thinking. that brings us to esas. it brought friedman's idea of the partial vouch tore life. we will hear a lot today about how they work. but education savings accounts, which allow parents to direct every single dollar of their child's education that's in their account to not just a single private school choice but to multiple services and products and providers represent the next generation of school choice. esas are a refinement of that
voucher model that friedman put forward back in 1955 and are one of the most promising ways forward for school choice. before i introduce our panelists, i should note it is ironic that after today's event to honor milton freed ma'am who popularized there's no such thing as a free lunch, there will be a free lunch in the lobby. the center for educational freedom. he served as legislator in the new hampshire house of representatives and education policy research fellow at the josiah center for public policy. he published numerous studies on education choice programs with organizations such as the friedman foundation for educational choice pioneer institute, show me institute, and widely published in print and online media. he received his masters in
public policy from the john f. kennedy school of government at harvard university. and education director for the gold water institute. his work appeared in "education next" and georgetown journal of law and public policy. and real clear policy, national journal, along with newspapers across the country. jonathan is a member of the arizona department of education steering committee for the empowerment scholarship program the nation's first education savings account program. and he's also a senior fellow at the beacon center of tennessee. jonathan previously studied education policy at the department of education reform at the university of arkansas and worked with a school choice demonstration project. the research team that evaluated the voucher program in washington, d.c. and in milwaukee, wisconsin. and prior to that, studied education and family policy here at the heritage found aation.
jonathan holds a b.a. from furman university and m a a in economics from the university of arkansas. last we'll hear from tim keller who serves as institute for justices arizona office managing attorney. he joins the institute as a staff attorney in 2001 is and litigates school choice, economic liberty and other constitutional cases in state and federal court. tim led the institute's defense of the tax scholarship program and tuition organization v.wen which culminated in a united states supreme court victory. tim successfully defended arizona's esa program. and perhaps the most interesting part of his bio, in addition to defending educational choice programs in arizona and nationwide, tim has helped knock down barriers to entrepreneurship on behalf of many hard-working individuals, including eyebrow fretters in
arizona, african hair braiders florists in louisiana. among these victories was his work on behalf of christian elf, a teenager from testimonympe, arizona to put steel mesh around senior houses. very interesting bio. he has a degree in economics from asu. please join me in welcoming our panelists. [ applause ]. >> that you can very much is lindsey. that you know, heritage, for putting this event together. as i was driving over here in my uber, i was speaking with the driver. he asked what i was doing. i said we were having a panel on the future of education. he said, well, you know, there's
two ways to solve the problem with education in this country. so of course i was very interested to hear what he had to say. he said there's the natural way and the miraculous way. i said what's the natural way? he said the natural way is if a an angel of the lord were to come down and to teach us exactly how we should create a quality learning environment for every student at a reasonable cost. and i said well, that's the natural way. what's the miraculous way. he said the miraculous way is you'll figure out yourself. i first heard from from professor jay green from the university of arkansas. it heights the challenges before us. one of the first places we will look at is the incentive structure. milton friedman and other economists talked about four different ways we can spend money. he pointed out you can spend your money or somebody else's money. and you can spend that money
either on yourself or on someone else. so when you're spending your own money, you have an incentive very strong incentive to economize. when you spend money on yourself, you have a way to maximize the value for what you get. the best structure is where you're spending your own money on yourself. that's where you will maximize the value and you're going to economize. unfortunately, our public school system in this country is category four spending. there's other people spending other people's money on other people. so you have a weak incentive either to economize or maximize value. we have seen the last four decades, the cost of k 12 education -- this chart shows the total cost of k-12 education, kindergarten through
high school over the years has tripled. inflation adjusted dollars. and yet we see that test scores have been absolutely flat over the same period. so we're spending three times as well and not getting any more bang for our buck. part of this has to do with how much more we are spending on teachers and other staff. there's been a staffing surge here this chart for the national center for education statistic shows that we've had about a doubling in the student population since 1950. and yet the number of total school personnel has gone up by 400%. teachers, only 250%. but the number of nonteaching staff has increased by 700% over that same period. when the number of students has only just about doubled. and parents aren't getting what they want. the public school system is actually crowding out other
alternatives. so when -- this is a poll from the friedman foundation last year. they found 40% of parents, if they had the ability, would send their children to a private school. another 11% would home school and the rest to charter. 83% are going to the public school system. so that's where friedman a's idea that he discussed about 60 years ago comes in. the school vouchers. as lindsey explained, the idea that we would separate the financing from the actual provision of education. to ensure every child had access to a quality education but wouldn't necessarily be the ones running the system. so going back to the four-ways of spending money. that is a significant
improvement. now we have parents spending money on their own children, maximizing the value they are going to get. but still using other people's money. they don't have a very strong incentive to economize. and we see this with higher ed vouchers, also known as pell grants. that the tuition and fees have far outpaced the inflation over that period. this is called the bennett hypothesis. so school choice, you see here in this little cartoon there's the public education system which is one size fits all. and then school choice, you get ava right of options of different schools. but just as a shirt is not the sum total of one's wardrobe, schooling is not the sum total of education. and a voucher can only be used at another school. and so that's where milton friedman said, how do we know how education will develop why
is it sensible for a child to his or her school in one building. why not spend math in one place and english or science somewhere else. why can't they take classes at home with the availability of the internet. so education savings accounts are bank accounts parents can use for a wide variety of expenses and save for future expenses. so this doesn't get us quite all the way. and you see the arrow doesn't go all the way into the green box. because the government is still putting a portion of the funds they would have spent on that student in a public school into the account. so the parents are still spending other people's money to an extent. but now they are able to spend it in one place and able to save. with a voucher, if you get a $5,000 voucher, you can only spend it at a school and you must spend the entire amount. a school would be foolish to charge less than $5,000 f.
they're getting a $5000 voucher, they're leaving money on the table. here, though there's downward pressure on price because there is no forward. they can save it and use it in multiple places. this allows for the unbundling of the education system. so what is it that is killing the newspaper stokes. it's not just the huffington post providing the news sources. there is google yahoo! people are turning to. but things like match.com and e harmony are taking a bite out of their section. craigslist and ebay are taking a bite out of classified ads. urban spoon, cars.com, the automotive section the culture and food section. so you have all these different players coming in and unbundling this whole bundle of services that the newspapers were providing. likewise, we have the same thing
happening in education. so john butcher and i did a study a couple years ago on the education savings account in arizona to see how are they using this program. 65% of the people in our survey were using the funds the esa funds, for traditional private school education. although a good number of them were also buying things like educational therapy. and the first year these were all families with students with special needs. but they were also -- we just lost power on that. but they were using a whole bunch of services. educational therapy. they were using -- can i get that back. we're going to need some of this. they were able to completely customize a la carte for their kids. some were home schooling some
online learning. but they were able to figure out what worked best for their kids. we now have a question how should we regulate this system. we have some people that believe, well, we're going to let them have is choices. but essentially you're going to have to choose, you know, among -- you can choose any car you want as long as it's yellow and follows these guidelines. uber says we will give more freedom to the drivers and we are going to allow the customer to have the ultimate say. accountability is going to rest with the customer. likewise, rather than having a system of common core in standardized testing where everybody has to meet the same standard, we should be moving in the direction where there are actually different forms of
accountability. there are competing standards. there are competing school models. parents have the ability to choose among these different models and see what works best for them. it's a process of experimentation, evaluation, and evolution. so experimentation meaning that the schools are going to try different things. we don't know the one best way to provide an education. assuming there is such a thing. so we should have a system that allows a great amount of innovation and diversity. and then we allow parents and the end user, parents and students, to evaluate what works best for them. and then the evolution comes when there is a market response to that. where the schools see where the parents are going what they're looking for. and if they're successful, they expand their model f. they're not very successful they change what they're doing based on what
is working and what parents and students are looking for. so that's the direction we should be going. and that's what educationsavings accounts are all about. [ applause ]. >> they are working on a backup. >> no problem. thank you. thank you, lindsey. thank you, jason. good afternoon, everyone. my name is jonathan butcher. i'm the education director at the gold water institute headquartered in phoenix, arizona. it's a pleasure to be here in washington with you today. the first educational savings plans in arizona in 2011. it was right about that time that i got to know a couple of families. i got to know the family of cathy and jordan visser.
lynn mcmurray and her children. and i got to know a amanda and michael howard and their son nathan. i would like to introduce you to them for just a moment. so cathy and her husband christo moved from one part of the valley, as we call phoenix, to a different section, up to the northeast corner. and as they looked to move and find a new school for jordan, they saw they were going to have to negotiate with their school district to find the best services for jordan. jordan has mild cerebral palsy and other learning delays. the school he was attending on the other side of phoenix, they had a preschool and kindergarten program that worked with his unique needs and were able to provide services to help jordan make it through each day. when they moved into the scottsdale area, the school district wasn't prepared and wasn't interested in providing the services that jordan needed every day to make it through the school day.
so cathy and christo tried to negotiate and discuss with the district what jordan needed. but they could not come to an agreement on how to provide a great education for jordan. so fortunately for the vissers this was about the time arizona lawmakers enacted education savings accounts. cathy and christo applied for jordan. they used their account first to accepted jordan to a private school that had a focus on helping children with special needs like jordan. as jason was describing just a moment ago, many of the families in that first year used their educational save savings account for those needs. what happened next is an interesting part of the story. it was after that first year cathy and christo decided they wanted something else for jordan. they took him out of school and began paying for personal
tutors, educational therapy that he was already receiving outside the classroom, as well as additional services in the home for jordan. so his school day looks like a combination of providers coming to the home to help him each day. and this was the idea. this separates education savings account from the other options available today either in the traditional school system for outside the school system for children in arizona and nevada, tennessee, and mississippi and florida. and this is why we are so excited about the potential that the accounts have for families across the united states. there is a video of cathy and jordan going to an educational therapist and paying for that service by taking out their educational savings account card which looks much like a visa card that i know many of you have your n your wallets right now.
and they swipe it across the square on the provider's iphone. and that's how they pay for it. so with the complicated paying we have in the state and the federal government today, if our students anywhere could go and pay for a service unique to their needs with something as simple as that. let me talk for a moment about amanda. amanda and her husband michael tried early on as any parent would to help their son nathan learn,000 speak. so they worked with the preschool program. they worked with the kindergarten program. and they tried to help get nape than to come out of his shell. eventually they took him to a specialist who found he was on the autism spectrum. so they found specialists outside the classroom to help nathan day to day. still they were not able to get nathan to reach this important
milestone that so many families look for to with a child. in the first year of the education savings account program amanda and michael were some of the first to apply for their son. and it was after about six months of finding a school unique for children that were on the autism spectrum. and some additional services outside of the home for nathan that amanda was sitting on the couch reading a book to nathan when he pointed to a picture on the page and said what's that? and now it was amanda's turn to be speechless. and these are the kinds of life changes that we see in families using the accounts that separates it from everything else that we have tried in the traditional system or otherwise to help every child have the chance at a great education. so finally, the last thing i would like to talk to you about is lynn mcmurray and her adopted
children alicia, uriaih and valerie. they used savings account after arizona's law expanded beyond just children with special needs. and lynn's children were eligible because they were adopted from the state's foster care system, which shows how the law has evolved over time. i will speak to that in just a moment. lynn and her family used it to pay for extracurricular activities at the school as well as tutoring. so what is unique about lynn and her family's situation so lynn is? my left, the top left corner up there. that is lynn and alicia in that picture. and then you have cathy visser and jordan on the tire swing there. so what is unique about their situation is they are using the accounts for public school
services. so they stretch beyond even what is offered in the private tech sore. and so we've talked about -- okay. that's fair. anyway. i'm not sure which. which button is it? >> there's no button. you have to tell it. >> so on the next slide we have the howard family which i talked about just a moment ago. so on the -- next slide, please. you can go to the next slide. as jason was talking about the amount of money that we spend on education across the united states is staggering. and he gave some numbers about how much we spend at large. we spend about $13,000 per student across the u.s. but taken on the big scale like jason was talking about just a moment ago, we were right around $600 billion in state local,
and federal dollars around the u.s. that's such a big number. it's hard to visualize what that means. so let's look at it like this. how high would a pile of $1 million a make in thousand dollar bills. if you were to stack them up. seven inches. now high would a pile of one billion dollars be in $1,000 bills. higher than the national monument. it takes on a whole new meaning. next slide, please. the graphs that were up just a moment ago -- thank you -- with the map of the united states the short stories that we don't compare well internationally. when you put the united states, we're right down there about number 27. compared to when you look at 15-year-old math scores around the country. next slide, please. if you look at children from highly educated families
families where at least one of the parents has a college degree, that figure is right about the same. so what that means is we don't really have two systems where our highly educationed students are somehow over here and the rest of the nation is over here. we have a system when compared to other nations regardless of where on the scale you look right, the united states is still right there at about the bottom. next slide please. so what is the future of education look like? clearlieer here to talk about education savings accounts. the state deposits public money in a private bank account that parents use to buy educational products and services for our children, as we have been describing. next slide, please.
as i was explaining educational savings account cards look like the visas you have in your wallet right now. there are five important issues when we explain how this works state to state. we talk about eligibility, who is eligible. how to apply for an education savings account. what the award is the amount of each award. how the accounts can be used. and we talk about what the audit process is to make sure families are using the accounts for their intended purpose. next slide please. i know you can't see what's on this chart. i have copies i can provide. and i will e-mail them to lindsey. the point of the chart is to explain five laws across the states. arizona in 2011. florida in 2014. and this year three states, mississippi, tennessee, and
nevada enacted educational savings account. what is important to note in the different areas i was listing for you, audits awards, are all slightly different from state to state. what that means is these states have taken an excellent idea about how to give every child the chance at a flexible education and adjusted it for the laws and regulations and the way they do opinions in their state. is and they have taken the time to make it something that will fit for the way that they have done education funding and even school choice programs in their state. next slide please. in 2013, i did a focus group study of families using educational savings account in arizona. what we found were the two bars on the left that are taller than the others. when parents went to look for ways and ideas for how to use
their empowerment scholarship account as it's called in arizona, many of them went to yahoo! message board created by parents already in the program. there was no government rule. there was no prodding from the state department that pushed parents a to create this online message board. it was something they created because they knew parent to parent, mom to mom in most cases that that is the best place to find ideas for how to use the new cards. as many families were talking amongst themselves how to use education savings account as they are we are going to the state department of education. next slide, please. the next thing we asked is how satisfied they were. this was early on in arizona's program. the satisfaction levels were very high both in this focus group and -- next slide please -- a larger survey of families using the accounts in arizona. what is critical about this chart right here is that the top
bar was asking them how many had some level of satisfaction with their previous public school before they moved to an education savings account. then we asked the same families how satisfied they were with app education savings account after they had left the traditional school system. and you find that there was unequivocably some level of satisfaction without exception there among families, when they talked about education savings accounts. even though in the prior question who said they were satisfied with their public school. which for a new program is a very good sign. next slide, please. so what comes next? now that we have five states using education savings accounts, two of them now have at least one year of implementing these accounts among thousands of families. the next thing comes how are state governments going to regulate the it? what are the rules going to be and how are they going to
intervene? what i would urge state is lawmakers to do is go to australia just briefly. the reason is years and years ago, decades ago, the government of australia thought it would be a good idea to introduce king toads because they eight beatles. they rid of the beetles and now they have a problem with cane toads. oddly enough a couple months ago there was a news report that came out and said they found a humane way to kill cane toads, catching them, putting them in your freezer and freeze them. probably the same thing should be done with the heavy hand of rules and regulations that are going to be applied to education savings accounts. we should put them on ice.
both arizona and florida lawmakers have written guide books for families and vendors who are active in the education savings account programs in those states about the rules that work for families and keeping track of how they spend their money, tracking to make sure they follow the guidelines and the law. same thing with the vendors, right. so we have states that have begun implementing these cards and awarding them to families. those are the places we should be looking to guide us as we make new rules and regulations. in fact, nevada just in the past couple of months just in the past six weeks, they have begun holding public hearings about what rules and regulations they are going to implement. and nevada's laws is significant among all the laws because nevada's law is the only one that is available to every public school student in the state. so is it's going to be critical that they do in fact get the
rules and regulations right for their program so as to provide great opportunities for all kids in that state. the last thing i would like to leave you with is also a coat from milton friedman. and from his book capitalism and freedom. i know many of those in this odd yes or no sure have read. it's so important and is shaping the way we have thought about not just the free market but also about education. he said our problem today, and he's talking about education e. our problem today is not to enforce conformity. sit rather we are threatened with an excess of conformity. our problem is to foster diversity. and the alternative would do this -- and the alternative he is talk building is school choice. would do this far more effectively than a nationalized school system. that is what education savings accounts bring to the united states. now we can talk about education. what is more a learning experience as unique as the children that is using their account. thank you.
[ applause ]. >> in the opening scene of the avengers, the villain lokey arrives on earth and he declares that he has come with glad tidings of a world made free. to which shields director nick asks free from what? lokey's one-word response, freedom. the opponents of educational choice are trying to keep parents free from freedom. and unfortunately the opponents
of educational choice programs have been at this for years. we opened our doors in 1991. and since then there hasn't been a single day that we haven't been in court someplace in this country defending an educational choice program. and today i'm going to give you a little bit of a preview of what is our most likely next school choice case. defending the program just passed in nevada. so we are expecting the usual suspects to bring a constitutional challenge to nevada's educational savings account program in state court. who are the usual suspects? well, the individuals making the most statements are the local aclu, the national aclu, the americans united for separation of church and state, and of course the teachers unions.
so some combination of these groups are likely to join together to file the litigation challenging nevada's esa program. they will do so in state court not federal court. why? because in 2002 the u.s. supreme court essentially took away all of the federal constitutional claims from those who oppose educational choice programs. and zelman v. simmons, united states supreme court, said a program that is neutral with regard to religion in which the government does nothing to favor one religiousn over another and decides which school to choose in the hands of parents so parents exercise a genuine private school will pass constitutional muster. so there is no federal constitutional claim we expect to see challenging nevada's
program. however, we expect to see them invoke two claims. one of the claims i believe is a serious claim. the other claim i believe is frivolous. so i'm going to spend a little bit of time talking about the serious constitutional claim first. and then we'll wrap up with the frivolous constitutional claim. what is the serious constitutional claim? well nevada is a state that has in its constitution what is called a blain amendments. we find them in 37 states. what is a blain amendment? they are typically phrased to say something like there should be no state appropriations in aid of or for the benefit of sectarian schools or sectarian institutions. i'll read you nevada's blain amendment here. it says no public funds of any kind or character whatever state county or municipal, shall used
for sectarian purpose. that's nevada constitution article 11 section 10. that's the provision we expect to be invoked to challenge nevada's esa program. so what does the term come from? it is named after a former maine u.s. house of representative, speaker of the house and united states senator james g. blain. mr. blain served in the congress in the late 1800s at a time when we saw a huge influx of immigrants. many of these immigrants were catholic. these individuals is were not warmly received by the protestant majority. we saw in state after state numerous clashes between the protestant majority and new immigrants, over primarily, though not exclusively, the common school system. you see the common schools of
that are what we would refer to as public schools. we're not always the thoroughly secular schools we're familiar with. in the late 1800s, they were primarily protestant in orientation. in fact, one of the goals of the early school system was to take children of catholic immigrants and essentially protestantize them or americanize them. there was real concern that somehow the catholics would take their direction from rome and upset our wonderful democratic republic. and so when our new found immigrants started enrolling their kids in common schools, they found a very hostile environment for their children. what they did is started agitating for their own system of publicly funded catholic education. if the protestants have their school system, why don't we have
our school system as well. there was a tremendous backlash. a handful of states adopted blain amendments prohibiting funding of sectarian schools. and as the u.s. supreme court itself has recognized, that word "sectarian" was code for catholic. it was an open secret. everybody knew exactly what they meant. and so mr. blain who wanted to ride this wave of anti-catholic bigotry into the white house introduced an amendment to the u.s. constitution, which would have prohibited funding for sectarian schools. in 1876, the provision passed the united states house of representatives with the required two-thirds majority to send it to states for ratification. however, in 1877 the amendment failed in the u.s. senate. however, it did garner a majority vote, just not the
requisite two-thirds to send it to the states. but because there was still a majority of senators and congressmen in the u.s. congress they were able to force or require new states entering the unit to include in their state institutions blain amendments dripping with anti-catholic animus. that is interesting. because the history there is slightly different. they voluntarily chose to amend their state constitution in 1877, the same year that the blain amendment failed at the congressional level, u.s. congressional level. and the reason they did so was because the state assembly had been making appropriations to a catholic orphanage.
there was a large mining operation in nevada. and unfortunately it was a very dangerous occupation. it still is. even more so back in the late 1800s. and there were many orphans in the state. and the catholic church operated orphanages to take care of them. and the state had made a number of appropriations over the years to help control those costs. this was a huge source of controversy, primarily because the orphanages were themselves catholic. so an assemblyman named boxford introduced legislation that would ultimately became article 11, section 10 which i read to you a moment ago. and what's interesting is as the amendment was coming up for a vote the nevada daily tribune praised assembly man boxman and and said this. this is a move in the right direction and will trust meet
with the hardy approval of every citizen of nevada for this is a steppingstone to the final breaking up of a power that has long cursed the world. and it is obtaining too much of a foot hold in these united states. so you can see that nevada's blain amendment is also dripping with the same anti-catholic as the blain amendment. so what does this mean for the challenge? it means, number one, we know exactly what the nevada blain amendment was intended to do. it was invented to prevent funding state institutions directly. it has nothing to do about programs who provide parents with benefits in a completely religiously neutral manner in which the state does not put its thumb on the scale in an effort to coerce parents to choose one option over another. in fact, it gives them free choice to choose the same schools they could choose without financial assistance to
satisfy their children's compulsary education requirement. so we don't think the blain amendment itself, based on its historical purpose applies at all to this program. moreover if you just look at the plain language of the provision and ignore its ugly history, the provision itself is designed to constrain the actions of government officials not private citizens as to where they use their own praoeufplt benefit private benefits. medicaid is both federal and state dollars. but individuals are permitted to use those benefits at religious hospital, religious health care providers. wife? because the government itself is not making the decision as to whether to use those benefits. the government makes these appropriations for the purpose of providing health care. and they allow the recipient to
obtain the health care wherever they would like. the esa serves the same purpose. the purpose underlying the nevada esa and all the es a as adopted recently around the country is to improve education, to give parents control over their children's education. to allow parents to uniquely tailor their child's educational program to meet that child's unique educational needs. from the state a's perspective, the only purpose that it served is education. no sectarian purpose is served. in fact, i think if you ask the parents their perspective on this, their perspective would also be that they are using these funds to obtain an education regardless whether they choose a religious school or nonreligious school. if you ask any parent why they are using a religious school they would say they want their child to get a better education.
so i think we will be able to successfully defend the program from the attack under the state's blain amendment as we have in other states. so what is the frivolous challenge? well shortly after we won our case in the u.s. supreme court, the nea, national education association's chief lawyer, was debating the issue of school choice in new york. and he said we've lost the federal constitutional issues. we will now abandon the federal establishment laws. and we will turn to state constitutions. and we will grab on to any provision we can there from lofty principles such as church and state to mickey mouse. procedural issues. these are his words. robert shannon. now retired lawyer from the nea. he said we will pick and choose
lofty principles and mickey mouse procedural tactics. well the other issue is -- you didn't expect that, did you? the other issue that our opponents have been talk building quite publicly is the provision of the constitution that requires the state to establish and maintain a public school system. that provision says this. the legislature shall provide for a uniform system of common schools. and then goes on to say it shall be open six months a year and open to all students in the state. opponents often grasp on to these union formity clauses and make an argument that these clauses require the legislature to fund education, exclusively through the public school system. the argument changes the meaning from one of uniformity to one of exclusivity.
now, there's only been one state that accepted this argument. that was florida in 2004. since that time, every corp. to consider it rejected it and has found these provisions establish a floor not a ceiling. a floor upon which state legislativers are free to build other educational options for their students. and i think we will be able to easily defend this program or defend the nevada's esa program from this constitutional claim in large part because one of the the interpreting state constitution is to interpret the provisions of the constitution together so they don't conflict. and nevada's education article actually begins with this statement. it says, "the legislature shall encourage by all suitable means the promotion of interlekt you'll literary scientific, mining agriculture and moral improvements."
when read in conjunction of a system of public schools, i believe it's very clear that public school system is the minimum requirement put on the nevada legislature and they're free to establish other options such as charter schools magnet schools and the educational savings account program to provide their citizens with the most robust educational options for their kids. why is all of this important? jonathan told great stories and i'm going to conclude with a story myself. because school choice is impacting real people. i want to talk about a client from arizona whose name is austin fox. austin has a disability. he was in a public school where he had a 2.0 gpa. the reason he was struggling as his mom described it was that he experiences sensory overload in
a large environment. for you sitting here this morning, it's relatively quiet in here. but for every tapping of a pencil every rustle of a seat it would be like vegas casino for austin. they just couldn't provide him the quiet learning environment he needed. he was desperate to get out of school. he couldn't stand being there. they really did try hard. they did try to accommodate austin. they just couldn't based on the way the school is set up. he was about to drop out when the esa program was enacted. his mom begged him to give a shot. they found a small private school that actually functioned and operated very similar to a home school environment. instead of sitting in a class, they sat on their own and had a master teach wrer they could master each individual subject and as soon as they mastered the
subject, they could progress. austin spent two years at this school. he started as a junior. he went from a 2.0 gpa to a 4.0 gpa. and he scored in the 98% on the sat's and he got a full ride scholarship to asu's polytechnic campus. pretty cool. that's really incredible. so with that, i turn it over to lindsey. >> thank you. >> we have ten minutes for q&a. yes, sir in the back?
>> there is a general question. the use of educational savings accounts are interesting. instead of a school voucher parents get to choose various aspects of their kids' education. but my question is regarding the university of michigan. university of administrations are based on high school transcripts and standardized test scores. if they're experiencing a diversity of aspects getting from different sources, how do you think university of missions will change in the long run? >> i think for students using education savings account to attend a private school they'll have a private school transcript just like any other private school student would. if they're using it to home school, all states have home school laws that have within them ways to get a high school transcript. so nothing change there's either. i think if a child is spending time buying individual online
classes or you know paying for personal constitutors to come to the home, that would qualify probably under the home school laws so they would go through the same procedures. i don't think there was enough in the saving account that woint fear with the way students complete high school and prepare for college. how will that change how colleges handle their own admissions? i think that is a larger question. lindsey knows more about higher education than i do. i think education savings accounts moves closer to is finishing school based on proficiency and not just based on how much time you spent in a seat. arizona has a program called the grand canyon diploma which allows students to test out of various requirements after even as early as ninth or tenth grade. and so i think arizona at least, i think there are other states doing something similar, they're moving in this direction right? they're beginning to see that
seat time requirements are a thing of the past. i think both education savings accounts and on line education are moving towards that. >> this allows parents to basically categorize all the different places their child is receiving an education. if they're obtaining classes from a well known school it sort of rank that's higher than as you suggest on your own. i haven't investigated it tremendously. i don't have the name unfortunately of the app. but i expect the things will develop over time so that students who are getting the sort of education will be able to collect all that data in one place. they'll be age to demonstrate the mastery of specialties.
>> i think we're starting to see universities reconfigure how they think about, admit students as well. and you think about just the fact that in general we're starting to embrace competency based learning models a little more. you haven't had a chance to read south hans pool house, he's a great example of how folks are starting to think about learning and education and how we measure that. you're probably familiar with that great line in the book where he says right now the learning that occurs that a child -- whatever a child learns in school is variable when it should be fixed. and to competency based, we flip that model to make sure that learning is fixed and the time it takes to get there is what is variable. so as soon as you're ready to move on, can you move on. if you need more time, take more time. so we're seeing that at the university level. i think university
administrators need to recognize that they're doing it and that it also applies to k-12. >> yes ma'am? >> mr. keller, can you explain why the groups like aclu and the teachers unions are opposing this in nevada? >> i try never to presume motive that is actually a lesson i learned from the goldwater institute. so, you know, better for them to address why they're opposing it. but again, they've been opposing the programs for over 20 years. they're always leading the charges. >> the challenge they place to the first esa program in arizona, they called it a voucher. they said this is still a voucher. we're going rule it was found unconstitutional. the court didn't. they said, no, this is fundamentally different than a
voucher. so that was a significant finding. along with the other states that passed the law. >> please tell me that arizona legislatures are listening to so many pleased constituents about these educational savings accounts that they have had little light bulb go off in their head and say how about health saving accounts? >> they have originally the program was only for students with special needs. they have since then expanded it to a number of different categories. foster children children living on native-american reservations children attending low performing public schools. so they are listening to the constituents. and jonathan mentioned the
student satisfaction survey. one thing that is really important about that is we also broke down the questions on satisfaction by income. and the families that were the least well off financially earning $27,000 a year or less were the least satisfied with their previous public school experience. marne half of them distressed dissatisfaction. just over one in five were satisfied. they were the most satisfied with the education savings account program. 89% said that they were very satisfied. so the low income families have the most to gain. and i think that a lot of politicians are recognizing it. it works for everybody. and especially those would are least well off now.
>> what kind of safeguards are being used to protect the interest of young people that don't have responsible adults to advocate for them? >> in terms of how they use their cards you mean? >> that's a great question. the deposits to these education savings accounts are made quarterly. so after a fiscal quarter ends, parents report back to the state department of education and what they use the cards for. they report the cards back to the seats. the department reviews them, makes sure everything is in line and then they make the next quarter's dispersement. the county can intervene and withhold funding from the next dispersement is f.f there is a problem with the families using the card. they recently said there have only been five instances where there is a significant financial, you know, issue or misuse of the card which among -- which is now going on
probably -- we're getting close to 3,000 accountses. that's pretty good for the first four, 4 1/2 years of the program. >> we're never going to have a perfect system. we should judge policies by their feasible alternatives as opposed to some idea we know we'll never achieve. for example, no child left behind in theory, that's fantastic. the fact is that not a single state met the proficiency standards after dramatically lowering the bar state by state for what the standards were. so with the education savings accounts by putting parents in the front seat again, they're spending something that is like their own money on their own children. you aligned the incentives much better. parents aren't flying completely blind. there are a number of ways without any government regulation whatsoever we can provide accountability and we can empower parents to make
better choices. one, private certification. if you think of underwriters laboratories or the good house keeping seal after principle of law, these are private organization that's come in and say, yes this product or service meets our standards. there are crediting agencies for private schools and stuff like that. i think we'll see more of that as the market expands and there is more consumer demand for that private certification. then there is private expert reviews. i think consumer reports or in food, you know, these are people who are experts in their field and they provide reviews of different products and services so that parents have access to that. i know that manhattan institute has something now and they just released and the other organization that's are building out this type of private reviews
of schools. the most important so amazon.com, angie's list, yelp this is the way that users are able to share their personal experience with this product or service with everybody else. matt who is an education expert in arizona told me that for students that are attending the great hearts charter schools said more than half of the parents that apply to the school have already checked them out at greatschools.com is where parents can arm the schools. they're becoming armed with information. we want informed parents and schools to be accountable for the parents. >> i would just add being the first state to pioneer esa's i think arizona really struck the right balance.
they said yes fiscal accountability to taxpayers for how we're spending the money. but accountability for outcomes should go to the people for whom that matters the most, the parents. they left that rest with parents. i think that is a good balance that they struck there. >> time for one more question. yes, sir? >> you think the supreme court will ever find in the first 14 precedent a right to publicly fund the educational choice for parents? there's no federal constitutional right to a public education. the rights are found in each individual state. i don't foresee a time in the future when the supreme court goes back on that. that i just don't. >> great. thank you all for being here today. please give another round of applause to our panel. [ applause ]
daily mail white house reporter talks about the most recent e-mails from hillary clinton being released by the state department after a judge's order. then a look at the possibility of interest rates being raised by the federal reserve. the chief economic correspondent dpor correspondent for "the wall street journal." look for comments on facebook and twitter. washington journal is live every day at 7:00 a.m. eastern on c-span.
>> we have a discussion on illegal immigration and the enforcement of the immigration law. new jersey governor and presidential candidate chris christie speaks at the university of new hampshire at manchester. on c-span2 on book tv's afterwards, michael tanner talks about the growing national debt and looks at restructuring entitleme in. t programs as a solution. and sunday afternoon at 3:00, glenn beck presents his thoughts on islamic extremism. and on american history tv on c-span3, sunday morning starting at 10:00 eastern, we commemorate the 50th anniversary of lyndon johnson's voting rights act. our coverage includes white house phone conversations between johnson and his aide sifg rights leader dr. martin luther king jr. and congressional members about how to enact and enforce the law.
and lbj's 1955 speech at the u.s. capitol own the signing of the bill. saturday night at 7:10, university of california berkeley history professor brian delay looks at the history of gun production in europe and how afrmz trading contributed to an american victory during the revolution. get our complete sketch at c-span.org. >> the only pirate in history to bring the british navy to a stand still. not one vessel. >> two navy ships. this is unheard of. he actually fought them. >> this sunday night on q&a robert person on the search for the pirate ship the golden fleece and the captain wealthy merchant turned pirate joseph
banister. >> he started off his life not as a pirate at all but as a noble english sea captain and gentleman trusted by very wealthy ship owners to sale their ship, the golden fleece, this wooden sailing ship between london and port royal jamaica which was known as the wickedest city on earth. and to carry valuable cargo like high sugars between london and port royal. did he that responsibly and nobly. then one day for reasons no one can quite determine, joseph banister stole the golden fleece, stole his own ship recruited a top flight pirate crew and went on the account of piracy. >> sunday night at 8:00 eastern and pacific on c-span's q&a. >> ashton carter talked about education of military families including an effort by the pentagon to track student
progress. the vent wasevent was hosted by the military child education coalition. [ applause ] >> thank you very much. good morning. good morning. mary, thank you. stephanie and i, where are you? we just met with a few kids from the student to student program your program. great. great. where are they? are you out there? where are they? yay! give those guys a round of -- what an amazing, incredible kids. and what a simple and powerful idea. that local military children and they're not all military children, including some nonmilitary children who take it
upon themselves to be ambassadors to new military children who just moved nearby. it's a great take on the tradition of sponsorship in our military, a tradition of sponsorship of new transitions to new bases and new communities that is part of our tradition but thanks to this organization is now gone down a generation. we're very grateful of that. and that's just one innovative way that this coalition supports our military kids beyond the classroom. and i want to thank you for orchestrating this tremendous training seminar seminar and for being the go to for our military children means a lot us to. i want to thank the teachers, counsellors, administrators,
parents here to dieday for your service to our next generation for committing your mission to making their stories success stories. thanks. to the people in our room this is clear. think about it this way. for our recent high school graduates, the entire time they've been in school during elementary school, spelling bees junior high school pep rallies, and senior proms america has been at war. last week i spoke to our men and women on the front lines in iraq. many of them are parents. many of those who aren't hope to be. some day. and for most their lives america has been at war. regardless of the reality they live in military children continue to muster the same grit
and courage their parents devote to defending our country. that's what makes our military the finest fighting force the world has ever known. it's our people. that's our secret sauce. not just our war fighters but their families, their kids who proud ly proudly embrace their service. people like "magazine on the move." margaret is in high school. her dad is a coast guardsman. they moved six times in her life. she says moving is both the best and the most challenging thing about being a military kid. margaret was asked about the most important thing people should know about military children. i'm told she said, "kids serve too." she's right. so many kids like margaret proudly own their service.
they're determined creative wise beyond their years and they seize their unique experiences as an opportunity, our challenge, the challenge this coalition has val yenltly taken on is to provide them the support they need to succeed. this may have been mentioned earlier. i think it was. long before i was secretary carter and for one time i was professor carter. so i'm an educator too. as educators we know education is critical to a richer quality of life for our people as americans we know education is critical to a vibrant democracy. but as secretary of defense, i can tell you that the education of our military children is critical to our mission and the
military that will defend our country in the years to come. it's true a dynamic force of future will maintain an operational edge and unmatched capabilities. but it's more than just advanced weapons platforms that keep people safe. people keep people safe. it's our men and women in uniform and their families. their conviction their courage, their sacrifice. let me just say it again. it's that that makes ours the fighting finest fighting force the world has ever known. if we're going to stay the best the u.s. arms forces has to be an attractive inviting supportive place to serve for families of all kinds. the world's changing.
the labor market is changing. younger generations and young families want flexibility and choice in their career paths. we know. that more and more were seeing they want to be on a jungle gym where you advance by moving around and having new experiences. noes an escalator where you get on and wait your turn. dod has to keep up. and keeping up means being more responsive to the needs of our military families and their children. that's our obligation. but given today's abundance of career paths to choose from, we can't take for granted that military children are twice as likely as other kids to join the military. nor can we take for granted military parents inclination to recommend military service to their own children. both of those things happen. there's tremendous value when
families upholding a tradition of service that is passed from generation to generation. there's no substitute for the unique potent mix of passion and mentorship that comes from a military mom, tad, granddad and in the case of my kids i was speaking about earlier today. or all of them. i recently got a letter from a fourth grader who wrote, "dear mr. secretary, i want to be in the military because i want to defend our country. and our country's freedoms. my mom and dad are in the air force. and that is what inspired me. there it is. it's great reason. military children like that future -- like that future airmen who already see the virtue of their parents service also see their peers chase their jungle gym style careers. they too, see businesses
trending towards more family flexibility. more opportunities to pursue higher education and fewer long term commitments. so we have to adapt to keep up. and when we make the department of defense a more attractive place to join across the board the virtue of service becomes a more worth while endeavor for military and civilian families alike. so our force of the future should be family focused. parents who never feel like they have to choose their profession or their familiarly. we're expanding ma tern and paternity leave and we're creating on ramps and off ramps between active duty and the reserves. so our personnel don't have to derail their careers to get an advance degree or to have a
family. we're overhauling the way we place personnel too. to offer more options and potentially, potentially, not always but potentially fewer moves meaning fewer first days as the new kid in the school. to give families more opportunity, we're making sure the serving and uniform doesn't mean you have to trade in your aspirations to wear a cap and gown. that's what you want to do. post 9/11 gi bill helped over 1.3 million americans pay for college. and those benefits are transferrable to family members. those are just a few ways we're working hard to be more responsive to the needs of our modern military families. which, of course, support our military kids. but when it comes to education,
we have a specific set of tools we use to deliver direct support in the classroom. more than 74,000 kids attend dod-run schools. overseen by our education and activities office. our schools have good teachers high graduation rates and above average sat scores. we're doing well but question always do better. that's why starting with this coming school year we'll ab dopting college and career ready standards across all the dod schools. so our military kids can hit the ground running in college and be first in line for 21st century jobs. this is a small part of child education, as you all know. more than 90% of military children attend local public schools.
this is essential for pushing progress outside the department's own schools. we're work together to make moving easier on kids. one is to create a military dependent student identifier. funnel resources and make smart policy decisions on behalf of our military children over their entire educational careers. if we know how particular groups of kids are performing we can better target resources to maximize their success. we greatly, greatly appreciate iron clad support. thank you. we're working to extend our reach in creative ways, case in point, since our educational partnership grant program where
funds go to local schools with the 15% or more number of military kids enrolled. they help more than 10000 high school students earn ap scores that qualify them for college credit. that is an incredible return on investment. this round of funding totals $52 million much i want to thank you once again for your continued support. i hope all of you will think of us as a partner and a resource as you tackle these challenges in your districts. i want to close with a story about a visit i made to an air
base in japan this past april during the month of the military child. had a chance to spend some quality time with military families and kids and for me it's the best part of this job, hands down. i met some 5-year-old students who were making bird feeders in a craft class. in my day i remember we made ashtrays. if you can believe that. goes to show how priorities and times have changed. to boost our military children's potential, we have to change, too. our security demands it. the force of the future demands it. and the flexible thorough, support of our military families and kids demands it together we can meet that demand. i can tell that you our military children are resourceful and resilient. i can tell you they're courageous and compassionate. i can tell you that they're
proud of their parents and proud to serve alongside them. but instead i'll let a military child tell you in hir own words. a poem was published by a sixth grader that goes to school in new mexico. and her poem is entitled "military girl." and i'm going to recite a few lines. "i am not in the rank of command orders i do not get but my dad is the one who does this i cannot forget i am not the one would fires the weapon who puts my life on the line but my job is just as tough i'm the one who left friends behind my dad makes the sacrifice my dad works to keep this country free but so do my mom, brother, sister and me even though i might get a little wild i stand with the rank known as
military child." that poet katie, is one of nearly two million military children whose parents serve among our active duty guard and reserves. that's the scope of our education challenge and our opportunity. margaret, katie, thoubs andz of kids like this give us a glimpse of the grit and the wisdom our military children have. and need to make their lives work. our mission is to have their back. to cheer them on. to make sure their stories are success stories, happy stories, and stories of fulfilled lives. because the brave men and women who defend our freedoms and risk their lives all over the world deserve the peace of mind that comes with knowing their families are being taken care of back home.
thank you for all you do. to promote that. [ applause ] >> the military child education coalition also hosts a panel with three military leaders on the social needs of military children. this is 35 minutes. >> thank you. >> well good morning. hey, look, don't you love those defining moments? i mean they're really really awesome. well, welcome to the family program town hall. i'd like toinlt deuce our panelists we have up here. first we have lieutenant general david albertson who is commander of the army assistant chief of staff for insti lags management
we have the air force deputy chief of staff for manpower and services. vice admiral dixon r. smith naval command. and the honorable danny g.i.pummel the principal deputy under veterans administration and he is also an adviser. gentlemen, thank you. so we collected questions from the audience the last couple days. and i'm going to start off with some of those questions. i understand there is a mike out there, though. if you have a question from the floor, please don't hesitate to go ahead and walk over there somehow signal me or have someone signal me throw a wad of paper at me or something to get my attention so i can then call upon you. i like to be as spontaneous in
the beginning. the first question is a question given to us two days ago. in lifgt theght of the current fiscal environment, how do you see funding of family programs being affected in the short and long term and then are there from your perspectives any nonnegotiables? >> i'll jump in. >> yes, the budget is impacting us. our program, cno, chief naval operations said we're not touching that. and so whether it's child development centers or youth programs, we're protecting those. and they're funded well because we understand importance of taking care of our children and the families because obviously that is very important to our sailors when they go forward to deploy. we have that fenced and we're
not impinging our child youth programs with this budget. >> it's a great question because it's a reality, right? we have to do it. and the most important thing is i think it's that fine balance we do between mission, you know family and our community and what it is because we understand family is part of readiness. and so from our per inspect in any event army and the other things, it is a very you know must fund type thing that we're doing here. just like dixon said, it is nonnegotiable. how we adjust certain things and deal with certain contract you'llal things of the way we are and brings the same service or capabilities, those are things we want to adjust and have discussions on. but to communicate that to the families, i understand, they are part of readiness from our perspective. >> i'll speak back on the one
case that i talked about is that partnership piece is really important as we begin to you know, the budget is kind of tight. we'll do the funding the best way we can. but we have to have that partnership as well. we know from experience the better off that the family of a service member to include the children are when they transition from military to civilian life, the better they'll be able to make that smooth transition less ptsd more chance of getting jobs that are involved in the communities.
>> thank you. you may have personal experiences with this as well you would like to share. what do senior military leaders believe the biggest challenge facing the veteran connected children? >> how do you integrate how do you get your kids integrated into your community and areas and stuff? so the biggest challenge as you know is -- and it's a reality that we're not the norm in society anymore in military. it's harder to get n it's hard to do this. and really how do we integrate with our society in the communities and how do we leverage that capability? it's important that you're an enabler to that education, you know experience. you're an enabler to do that.
the other folks in this society may not know what did your father do? what is the war about? all the conversations our kids have to deal with at times are very very important. and i think that conversation can be had. we have to reach out and things like msec or the school liaison has to educate the principals, the counsellors and all those types of things of what this child's gone through, problem bhi has moved multiple times. their spouses have been or their parents have been deployed. all these types of things, maybe like my kids, 12 different schools, how they have to deal with the thins. all these types of things are going to be maybe not as normal as it used to be. as we shrink and get smaller because what we have to do is that experience may not be there. so i think that's going to be something that we'll have to
continue to foster in the future. >> and going forward. so you think about what happened since 9/11. incredible support we have across this united states for support for the military and our children. so going forward, is that support going to wayne a little bit? >> so this collaboration with school boards and other organizations like this, that's what we have to do to make sure we have a continued support with our local communities. it's hard to grow up as a military child as you go from school to school. so my kids are -- i have a 22-year-old and 20-year-old, daughter of the 22-year-old, nine different schools three different high schools, that's challenging.
>> one in the transition from school to school. come into a new environment. not knowing anybody and the integration. that's where student to student that they do our connection rooms that manufacture the schools now have really help and enables our kids to get integrated quickly and be able to focus on academics. that's where the interstate compact and the efforts this organization have had to get all 50 states finally onboard with that. the military student identifier right now and 17 of our states have the identifier on the forms and continue to push that need. because then when you do that you contract those students and they can get through school
easy. that state's graduation credentials. those are the two biggest thing this is organization and many organizations are working that and, you know, i personally know we all thank you for what you do on that. but we have to keep on pushing it because the job is not done. >> after deployment, what can leadership do to reinvigorate initiatives between inste lagss and school districts? >> make sure they're integrated with the local school board and community. just emphasizing that point is something we need to do. and then every time that we go out as senior leaders to go out to visit with the local communities and visit with those school boards to make sure there is an understanding what it is and the challenges our folks are
facing. >> senior commanders are on the school board. they are advisors. >> i think it's very very important. we put school liaisons into our areas there. that facilitates that communication that they need and what we need to do. and also from that try to balance to admission community and family, you know, we've done a lot of things like adopt schools and these types of programs put the soldiers to assist. all the things like with stem and working with robotics teams and taking our capital to know that you have to give back to the community and share this dialogue with our children and stuff very, very important. so these are the initiatives we have to continue to foster. this is our lower you know our next mustard seed we have to grow from a leader perspective
to make sure the commanders know is part of readiness. and this really gives that you balance that can you see. and you'll just like everything we've seen you'll reap the benefits of it from anything do you from your civil input. education is so important. when you talk to families education is a huge readiness issue. and what we want to do is create the environment that the family unit stays together and they don't make decisions because it's an education. war is hard enough to push. but to stay together is very, very important in that focus in the work that we're doing is allowing that and to ensure they don't have to make the other tough choices. >> the next one deals with stem. stem being science, technology engineering and math. and this is -- it could be answered in a yes or no. do you think this is more
important than sports? >> yes. >> my two girls, one is mechanical and one is electrical engineering. it's important, right? my wife was english background. but it's really important. but she did go to the academy. but it's really important i think, for stem. i think in the future it's a gap that we need to do. and it's exciting. it doesn't matter where you are, there's a lot of opportunities for us like they were in college and they went to -- i mean they were in high school and went to college classes to facilitate some of these exploitation of stem. so i've seen the school districts work very closely with them to ensure they do have the environment to learn and to prosper and to understand that it's okay to -- especially with my girls, being and engineer is
a good thing to do. >> we push stem very hard. we have partnerships with 2100 schools out there across the country. and where we can, we leverage the expertise in stem in those partnerships whether it is down on the river and out in hawaii where the shipyard or in san diego. bl we are ruining stem competitions. so we consider it very important as dave sid, we have to work that stem piece. the more we can get that into the elementary schools and middle schools, high schools, the better off we're going to be not only as a navy and service but as a country down the road. >> okay. this next one aennd the numbers
may be wrong. but the idea is important here. there is a 35% suicide and depression rate of children of military personnel and 37% higher for siblings of military personnel. are you seeking programs to address this? >> it's the biggest fear of all parents, right? kids grow up and hormones change and the development, we learned a lot more. but we are in the aspects from the army instituted a lot of the training we did for our soldiers and stuff is being offered to family members and to children that are cyss and stuff like that. so we've done that internally to -- in the acs and teaching master resillency and be pushed all wait down to give them the resilience they need to understand that these are normal and they can get help.
it's troubling if you have one that there is so much life to go through that it's not turning on the computer it's a life experience. life is about the ups and downs and how do you get through them as a team or together as a yunt and that you're not alone. >> the struggle for the air force, just just to piggyback on the resillency trainers is to have one in every quadsquadron in every air force. that's the path we're on to piggyback on. that not only it is for airmen it's also for the families as well. we're doing the same thing. >> the answer is yes also for that for the navy. but we do the same thing to our fleet and family service centers. >> from a va perspective, we do a lot with suicides. our figures are the best we have right now is about 18 veterans a day commit suicide in the united states. one thing i worry about is the transition period for military children when they leave that
reserve status and going into the civilian sector. i remember back when i was in high school, my dad retired from the air force. i was a junior in high school. that was a nightmare for me. i never fit into the new school. it probably delayed my college by four years. i was a mess. i don't know if there are figures out there. i heard your figures. i'm dernd that figures were the people that left military and are now civilians. i don't know if anybody is keeping those figures. that is something we need to think about and worry about how do we better hand that will transition for the children? >> good point. >> what do you believe? this is an aspect from a parent's perspective. but what do you think is the best way to hash your resilience in my child after all the deployments and reintegration? we'll get to each of those. >> you know what we try to do
for our kids, is you know, we want them to stay in team sports. or the band or something that has more than one person. so just an individual activity isn't something that you know, as you go into a new school and now it's time to go into the cafeteria and if you're participating in a group event whether it's band or choir or sports, then you walk in and there is somebody you know that you can sit at the table. otherwise, you're going into that new school and you don't know a soul. >> right. >> those kinds of things get more people around is what we try to do. i think something that helps. >> i think -- that's a tough question. it's reality. even though folks will say that we're not certain places and there's no work, from an army perspective, we're just as busy doing engagement things in the ukraine and balkans and other areas, rotational forces. so the churn is still the same for people deploying.
it's part of the aspect you are to be a military child in the military family and stuff like that. they do need to understand to communicate. so the families we have at acs and housing as a family and how you deal with these things are very important. you understand you're not unique with the issues. it's how you communicate them to your child as the spouse or something of your soldier's deploying deploying. knowing that they're doing it because their mission requires it. but they really want to be. there and the connectivity they do. all the different programs we can bring together to keep the kids connected, we made a lot of progress on that. but it's going to be part of the norm. we have to continue to stress the programs and learn the communication and understand that it's just a normal thing. it so true. twunt get back to normal as soon as possible. that way they feel comfortable and have confidence in
themselves and what they are. and to get that circle that they're not alone. that's the unique thing we have to continue to stress. >> when i look at the things we've done each time we moved with our three kid, it came down to three things the things we could keep stable to keep stable. make sure that love exists in the family. they knew we loved them no matter what they wanted to do and the third thing sint inauguration in outside the family whether it in xoog or extra curricular activities and making sure they're involved. >> so one important skill do you believe military children will gain just by virtue of being military connected children that will make them college and career ready? >> i'll jump on that one. and i always -- we spent three years in naples. i guess middle school for our two oldest and spent three years over there and they learned things they learned that there
is more out there and a bunch of english speaking americans. there is more to do out there. there is more ways to do things than just the american way. we walk in a church and say look at. this oh, look at this another church. they've been in 15 or 20 churches. but what i really saw the change is when we came back and went to our next duty station back here and had a young man same age as our oldest one that lived a couple doors down. he was a solid kid. good grades, athlete, could converse with adults just a squared away kid. but the difference between that young man and our oldest was his universe revolved around jacksonville florida. our son's universe revolved around the world. he understood there is more out there than just jacksonville. and to me and i look now and he's now 28 and what he's doing and how he succeeded, yeah we moved many times. all three of our kids went to at least two different high schools. but the resilience and peace we talked about braen working and providing the things that can be
stable, i look at how he and the other two kid are now as a result i think they are who they are because of the experience we had in the military. >> okay. i think the global aspect of the global world we're connected economically, militarily and global and just like dixon said i also think that they are resilient because they had the pcs and have done the different things. they integrate really well with people. it's really important to be able to do that. as a national university which was, you know, can be intimidating. graduating from oklahoma and all the other issues. they felt very comfortable with. that i do think our children, they have a great you know worldly experience because they're going to be exposed to a whole bunch of different things. and they can actually be an
enabler into the educational environment for the rest of the people they're with. and if the teachers and the principals can actually exploit that type of thing, it really does, you know, make it unique experience. >> we had a short conversation this morning over coffee with mary. and, of course the world knew and all that stuff. then we had a discussion about the little things. being on time rsvp'ing nobody rsvps anymore. thank you notes, only military people send thank you notes. yes, sir yes, ma'am little things like that that kind of set them aside that discipline that little bit of extra that they learn from being military children. so that's on the side a little bit and makes them special. >> good comments. >> what can secondary schools do to address the fact that there are too few people with what
with they call middle skills, leaving an employment gap. by middle skills, think what the questioner is asking is what do you do about voluntary tech training? are we trying to make everybody college ready when not everybody ought to go to college and things like that? >> the american model is you have options, right? it is an individual choice bhauwhat you want to do. i know we're doing a lot on credentialing a lot of our skills from that capability. i think it is an awareness. i mean, there is a big thing even with education how do you do education? i think there is a big attack on the institutional aspect of education. and the brick-and-mortar aspect of doing that. when you look at the new businesses credentialing and
getting your certain credentials are just as important as, what? as having this broad based education. because if i'm going to be an i.t. person, i don't really need world history maybe. so there are issues we really have to be able to work on these approaches. georgia tech even with their masters program now have been able to cut down the costs especially in some cyber fields just because of this approach to be able to take a different approach where a different approach where you're not so much focused on the other arching aspect but to get the dre ken credentialing. so america will have to continue to look at it and go for that. so we're doing a lot to capture the experts to be able to then impose and to credential folks along their way. so that's why for us for a soldier for life, we're doing credentialing so our soldiers when they transition have more
skill sets than the outside. >> we do similar things with the credentialing piece. but to get to the core piece of that question, as you look at where we're going. do folks in the cyber realm, do they need a college degree or is it programming and coding and that kind of stuff whether it can be learned on your own or different ways should that be part of our middle schools now as opposed to what we do today? >> it won't be turning wrenches and doing automechanic stuff. it will be cyber. >>? in what ways do you feel these programs help parents and families help with military connected children. >> well, i mean i'm looking out here and i see folks that i recognize and there's a couple of things that come to mind. it's not just the programs that is provided by and that we utilize throughout the services
but it's all t separates that are separate but that you partner together and leverage each other with what you do. that's your shoutout, you asked for it last night. that makes a difference. so you all are spending two solid days here and while we sit up here and talk and ask questions and you listen to folks, what's really going to happen is the networking partnerships that you're establishing, developing, and the thinks you're writing down and say you poe what? we're going to work that out. so it's the breaks and that's what i think will benefit, the leverage is and what you all do, so thank you. [ applause ] >> and i think what's important is how do you adapt to the new ways things are and what are the new approaches you need to do? i think it's important that msec has been -- a lot of us there
are when we founded this thing called msec and being there as a young leader was exciting to see. we didn't know that -- now we didn't know what it would become and just these few years since we were there it does show you the power of what one person can do and move this forward. i think that's what's important here is the mustard seed aspect of taking this to our communities, to facilitate this is a expect that education is important, the military child is important, we have to give them opportunities so it that's why it's important so it's an amazing thing. so howe we do that for where we want to be in 2025 is the thing we keep focusing on. >> i didn't think you can put the importance of what mcec does. i think about myself as a
independent, my grand kids as independent and the things that have changed. we spoke this morning, we have an all volunteer force. that's important. that's a very fragile all-volunteer force. being a military child is hard. going to school as a military child is hard. if we can't make sure those children are taken care of and they have a better-than-average chance of society, that will be one of the pegs you can remove that would cause the all-volunteer force to go away. these kids if you look at the statistics there are future officer, future ncos, most of them join the military. and if you look at the important people in the united states right now, most of them are military children, you have to sustain that. you have to keep that going. >> i'm going ask for closing comments in just a quick second. but i wanted to -- there are a lot of young folks out here and i wanted to ask you might what advice you might give students
in the room here with regard to cultivating talent and developing persistence to achieve success. >> work hard. [ laughter ] good advice. >> set goals, stay in school. there's no easy solution for any of this you know? it takes a whole team and with our kids and stuff and i think that's what's important about it. and, you know, set your sights high. it's important. you can do anything you want. that's the beauty of america. set those goals high and reach for it. >> despite what mom or dad says chase your dream bus be focused and work hard at it and don't give up. >> okay i would ask each of you if you have something else you'd like to close with that we'll go ahead and close with that. >> it's been a great opportunity just -- the dialogue and questions. if you're well prepared for things with the questions you didn't give us any real answers
so it's good to have the dialogue dialogue. but thanks, like most folks we are committed to our military child and education. education is very important. it is a readiness issue. family is a readiness issue especially with the all-volunteer force. it's on the three-legged stool that we have to nurture and balance during tough times. so just like this thing, it's their story, it's our mission, our commitment to the mill takes our commitment to you all and what you do here. that's a big part of the professional aspect of what we try to do and i want to say thanks to each and every one of you and what you'll do for our kids as you go to each part of the globe that you come from so thanks very much. >> i'll address -- go ahead, you can clap. [ applause ] by the way, i was kind of risky when i poked at him a little bit because he was a hockey player
in college so he might have hit me. my dad quit high school when he was 17 years old and joined the united states air force. he served for 30 years. so to go back to that point before. three of us, my older brother younger sister, we moved all over the world. i went to 10 different schools in my time my sister and brother about the same kind of thing. sometimes it's different schools in the same grade because of the way the pcs cycle was. my mom dragged three of us, eight, six and four from south carolina to the philippines by herself through the military airlift system and i was the six-year-old and i know i was a lot of help as we were moving through that. [ laughter ] so we did that but there was no such thing as an mcec or communication between schools and now i've had two kids that have gone through similar things with eight and nine different schools between the two of them. but they merged out of it just
fine. but it's that -- some of the things we talked about earlier. the love at home, a bigger organization that they can latch themselves on to. the air force, the military all the services, there's opportunities, so for young people in the crowd here you work hard, there's plenty of opportunities just like ones that existed in 1956 when my dad joined exit today. you work hard, you'll do things. so thank you. [ applause ] >> i just want to say thank you. you're here because you care, whether you're an educateoreducator, a parent, run a support program, you work with one of the services to take care of our children you're here because you care. don't forget you make a difference, you support us you support our families and you all truly are a force multiplier and we appreciate that very very much. so, again thank you for what
you do day in day out for our children. [ applause ] >> i would just reinforce what everybody else said. thanks. you know why you're here, you know why it's important. from a veterans administration perspective, my big concern is transition of service members to civilians, to be productive civilians. one of the greatest things that's happen is congress enacting the act which greatly expanded the transition program and the services now allowing spouses to attend transition with their service member. we know from our statistics in the v.a. that if a spouse attends the transition program with his or her spouse that they sign up for more benefits, take advantage of more benefits and they usually don't mess up their transfer, their college and things like that. just having that spouse there is a huge difference. one of the things i pledged to marry is that the v.a. will work with mcec to try to figure out a
ways to get you guys access to our web sites and your information to our transition so that we can provide the people going through transformation the things they need for their children because i can tell you in that whole transition process it takes about 180 days. there's not very much for children in there. everybody is thinking about the job, the service member, where they're going to live, where they're going to go to school, how they handle medical issues and things like that. we can't forget that important part of the family transitioning with them. thank you again for having me here today. [ applause ] >> i learned a lot because i didn't know a lot of that information and i think we all took away something from their personal experiences that they've had as they've gone through their time in the military and raised their children, they went through the same thing you all are going through now and that we're trying to help facilitate which is proper transition.
marry, if i can ask you to come up and we can give you a memento here. this weekend on news makers, alabama senator richard shelby is our guest. as chair of the banking committee, he talks about the export/import bank, financial regulation under the dodd-frank law and the federal reserve's monetary policy. news makers, sunday at 10:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m. eastern on c-span. when first lady ida mckinley arrived at the white house in 1897 she was in poor health suffering from epilepsy and her husband president william mckinley would sit next to her so when he saw she was having a seizure he would cover her face with a large handkerchief until her episode past. she attended the 1901man american exposition where her husband was assassinated.