Research Links & Critical-Thinking Questions – December 2017

RESEARCH LINKS
Issue 1: Charter Schools National Alliance for Public Charter Schools “About Charter Schools” National Center for Education Statistics on Charter School Enrollment Statistics National Alliance for Public Charter Schools Facts  Center for Education Reform Charter School Facts NPR: Just What Is a Charter School Anyway?  Issue 2: Debt Ceiling U.S. Department of Treasury on Debt Limit  Congressional Budget Office Report: Economic Outlook for 2017-2027  U.S. Social Security Administration Fact Sheet  Center on Budget and Policy Priorities: Where Do Our Tax Dollars Go? Politifact: So What Is the Debt Ceiling All About Anyway?  
CRITICAL-THINKING QUESTIONS
Issue 1: Charter Schools
  1. Do you think funding charter schools with tax dollars hurts traditional public schools? Why or why not?
  2. Proponents of charter schools believe they encourage school competition and innovation. Do you agree or disagree? Why?
  3. What are the arguments for and against charter schools? Where do you stand on the issue?
  4. Compare the Democrat and Republican congressional quotes for Issue 1 (charter schools). Whose opinion more closely matches your own view?
  5. What is your position on "school choice?" Do you agree or disagree with the idea?
Issue 2: Debt Ceiling
  1. Do you think Congress should raise or eliminate the debt ceiling, or refuse to raise it yet again? Why?
  2. Compare and contrast the pro/con congressional quotes on p. 3 of the newsletter. Whose opinion do you agree with the most, and why?
  3. Read the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities analysis of where our taxes go (see link above). Do you agree with the current budget allocations? Why or why not?
  4. When governments create budgets, they prioritize some programs over others (such as health care or national defense). What types of trade-offs might need to be made in your opinion?
  5. Read the Congressional Budget Office Report on our country’s economic outlook (see link above). What is the long-term projection for the federal debt? How will this affect your future?