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?

Research Links & Critical-Thinking Questions – November 2017

RESEARCH LINKS

Issue 1: North Korea

RAND Corporation’s “Striking First: Preemptive Attack in U.S. National Security”

The Hill: “How Trump’s Military Options with North Korea Could Play Out”

The U.S. Army’s Backgrounder: “The Korean War: 1950-1953”

Debate.org’s Pros and Cons of Military Intervention

CNBC Column: “Here’s the Only Way to Fix North Korea”


Issue 2: Paris Climate Agreement

Statement by President Trump on the Paris Climate Accord (June 1, 2017)

Wikipedia: Global Warming Controversy

2014 National Climate Assessment. U.S. Global Change Research Program

PBS Column: “Why the U.S. Should Remain in the Paris Climate Agreement” 

The Guardian: Best Arguments from Climate Scientist Skeptics 


CRITICAL-THINKING QUESTIONS

Issue 1: North Korea

  1. Do you support the position that the U.S. should strike against North Korea preemptively? Why or why not?
  2. Read the U.S. Army’s historical backgrounder on the Korean War (see link above). Do you think North Korea’s stringent dislike of the U.S. is fair? Why or why not?
  3. Read Debate.org’s Pros and Cons of Military Intervention (see link above). Do you agree more with the pros or the cons? What are the reasons for your position?
  4. It’s estimated that between 150,000 and 200,000 North Koreans live in prison camps where as many as 40% of the camps’ prisoners die from malnutrition. Why do you think Kim Jong Un does this to his people?
  5. Read the RAND Corporation’s “Striking First” commentary (see link above). Do you agree with the author’s reasoning? Why or why not?

Issue 2: Paris Climate Agreement

  1. What is your position on climate change? Do you think it is caused by human activity or not? Outline your arguments and defend your position.
  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. Do you support the U.S. rejoining the Paris Climate Agreement? Why or why not?
  4. According to the Wiki article on “Global Warming Controversy” (link above), disputes over the key scientific facts of global warming are more prevalent in the U.S. than globally. Why do you think this is so?
  5. Read the PBS opinion piece (link above). Do you agree or disagree with the assertions made in the article? Why or why not?