Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Today's Random Thoughts

-No Sunday Commentary this week, I'm immersed in the final term paper of my grad school career.

-Maybe I was right when I speculated about the possibility of an Obama presidency reducing the achievement gap. A new poll out from the NY Times has the percentage of Blacks reporting that race relations in the country are generally good consistently around 30% the last couple decades (29% in July '08) and this month it's at 59%. A couple other interesting cross-tabs: 0% of Blacks disapprove of the way that Obama is handling his job, and from last July to now the percentage of Blacks who report thinking that the country is on the right track has risen from 3% to 70%. Full story on the poll here.

-This piece on how we should restructure universities is now the most e-mailed article on the NY Times website. I think he correctly diagnoses a lot of the problems, but am I the only who thought he went off the deep end when proposing some of his solutions?

-It continues to amaze me that people blindly quote from the Urban Institute's TFA study, apparently oblivious to its limitations. This is why it's really important for researchers to avoid making claims not backed up by their findings -- irresponsible research begets irresponsible journalism.

-I tend to be more caustic during finals time, so I'm going to stop there before I say something really mean.

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