https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/maxresdefault1.jpg 720 1280 Jim Stergios https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/logo_440x96.png Jim Stergios2022-04-26 16:55:052022-04-27 15:01:33Time for Receivership in Boston
The Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) recently launched its second review of the Boston Public Schools (BPS) in three years. The move has some up in arms because state law requires that officials conduct a review no more than a year before approving state receivership. For BPS, receivership is long overdue. After more than 15 years of consistent and rapid decline, the district has shown no ability—and limited will—to stem the tide
https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/reaclear-39.jpg 960 1440 Jamie Gass https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/logo_440x96.png Jamie Gass2022-03-09 13:13:082022-04-27 15:12:27Civics Education is More Important than Ever
Rather than seeking to raise a generation of political activists and community organizers, civics programs should instill an informed love of our country based on the nation’s founding, how our system of government works, and what Americans have achieved – together with our many failings – since the nation was created.
https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/Screen-Shot-2021-10-25-at-10.22.17-AM-620x387-1.png 387 620 Charles Chieppo https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/logo_440x96.png Charles Chieppo2021-12-17 09:43:232021-12-17 10:53:10Removal of Mass. and Cass encampment long overdue
Michelle Wu’s plan to clear tents from the Mass. and Cass homeless camping site by January 12 is long overdue. If only it had been done earlier, the move could have averted a humanitarian crisis.
https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/oped-maine-education-e1634068017899.jpg 683 1025 Charles Chieppo https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/logo_440x96.png Charles Chieppo2021-10-09 19:13:062021-10-13 10:18:43Maine Tries to Ignore a Clear Supreme Court Ruling on Education
As the U.S. Supreme Court takes up Carson v. Makin, the facts are clear. Maine has chosen to subsidize private education. As such, it cannot disqualify all religious schools from receiving public dollars under its school choice program.
https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/oped-public-schools-e1634067402283.jpg 677 1024 Charles Chieppo https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/logo_440x96.png Charles Chieppo2021-10-01 19:17:582022-01-11 09:53:03Time for State Action on Troubled Boston Schools
Given the failures of both appointed and elected school boards, perhaps the time has come to have the state Department of Elementary and Secondary Education appoint the members of the Boston School Committee. Patience might be warranted if the Boston Public Schools were improving. But we have waited for decades, and they are only getting worse. Holding adults in the system accountable was a cornerstone of the Education Reform Act. If not now, when?
https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/americanflag2.png 1080 1080 William Smith https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/logo_440x96.png William Smith2021-09-27 17:00:422022-01-03 10:25:31A Modest Proposal to Raise Federal Revenue
As a way to tackle drug prices, President Joe Biden recently announced that he supports the so-called “inflation rebate,” which would require drug companies to give the federal government any revenue from Medicare drug prices above the general rate of inflation. Senate Finance Committee Chairman Ron Wyden and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi have also publicly endorsed the inflation rebate.
https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/unnamed-2-1.jpg 1096 1949 Barbara Anthony https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/logo_440x96.png Barbara Anthony2021-09-01 08:10:342021-09-01 10:14:07Why are health care costs rising every year in Massachusetts?
The largest driver is the increase in prices by health systems that have the clout to command higher payments and work to recruit more patients to their high-cost facilities.
https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/NLSCX7X24ZFJJALOSVADLA6FBQ.jpg 810 1440 Charles Chieppo https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/logo_440x96.png Charles Chieppo2021-07-12 03:00:522021-07-14 16:39:13A truly progressive student loan policy
This op-ed originally appeared in the Boston Globe. It was written…
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Massachusetts is in the midst of wrongdoing on an unprecedented scale. Thousands of convictions had to be vacated because of the corruption of state drug laboratory chemists. Thousands more convictions were vacated because of the combined misconduct of the chemists and prosecutors. And still more will be vacated because of the Commonwealth’s repeated and deliberate failures to investigate the extent to which its evidence was compromised.
https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/Untitled-design-2-4.png 512 1024 William Smith https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/logo_440x96.png William Smith2021-05-17 10:18:482021-05-26 10:53:35A Rush to Judgment on Alzheimer’s Drug
The Boston-based Institute for Clinical and Economic Review (ICER) sells itself as an independent source of information on the value of pharmaceuticals. But earlier this month, their bias was again evident when they tried to kneecap a drug for a dreaded disease before there’s even enough data to determine how valuable the drug really is. ICER has adopted this same strategy in the past on innovative drugs for cancer, cystic fibrosis, and other devastating diseases. This time ICER’s target is aducanumab, Biogen’s drug for Alzheimer’s disease.
https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/Untitled-design-1-4.png 512 1024 Tom Birmingham https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/logo_440x96.png Tom Birmingham2021-05-07 10:33:502021-05-26 11:06:37Rigorous Civics Education Needed Now More Than Ever
After decades of being overlooked, the importance of teaching US history and civics in public schools is at last gaining momentum. At the same time, the American Rescue Plan will bring an influx of tens of millions of dollars into Massachusetts schools. The confluence of these two events could transform civics education, but turning potential into reality will require combining a high-quality, fact-based curriculum with strong accountability measures.
https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/535488_5_.jpeg 563 750 Jim Stergios https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/logo_440x96.png Jim Stergios2021-04-16 06:10:052021-11-23 10:32:56American Rescue Plan Gives States Money, Ties Their Hands
For state governments, the good news is that the American Rescue Plan recently signed by President Biden will inject $350 billion into their budgets. The bad news is that it places unwise and possibly unconstitutional limitations on how states can use the money.
https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/Copy-of-WordPress-Blog-Post-Featured-Image.png 512 1024 Tom Birmingham https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/logo_440x96.png Tom Birmingham2021-03-16 08:10:442021-11-23 11:12:23Charter schools leading the way with in-person instruction
Massachusetts charter public schools have lived up to their decades-long record of excellence during the pandemic, developing innovative ways to continue providing high-quality education by maximizing the number of students who can safely learn in person.
https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/WordPress-Blog-Post-Featured-Image-2-2.png 512 1024 Jim Stergios https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/logo_440x96.png Jim Stergios2021-03-10 13:08:382021-12-29 12:24:38A wealth tax, a SCOTUS case, and a likely Mass. exodus
Op-ed in The Boston Globe: A case New Hampshire filed with the US Supreme Court last October against the Commonwealth of Massachusetts could have a huge impact on state finances nationwide. It also raises the stakes as the Massachusetts Legislature considers amending the state constitution to eliminate the state’s prohibition against a graduated income tax and to hike taxes on high earners.
https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/WordPress-Blog-Post-Featured-Image-1-2.png 512 1024 Jim Stergios https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/logo_440x96.png Jim Stergios2021-03-03 09:12:142021-12-29 12:16:42Enacting ‘Millionaires’ Taxes’ Will Set Back State Recoveries
Even as countless citizens and businesses are struggling, many state governments are faced with large deficits that hinder their ability to help. As a result, some, such as Massachusetts, are considering raising taxes on high-earners to generate revenue. But in its report, “Connecticut’s Dangerous Game: How the Nation’s Wealthiest State Scared Off Businesses and Worsened Its Financial Crisis,” the Boston-based Pioneer Institute provides a cautionary tale about the dangers of going down the path taken by the Bay State’s neighbor, Connecticut.
https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/WordPress-Blog-Post-Featured-Image-4.png 512 1024 William Smith https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/logo_440x96.png William Smith2021-02-03 10:45:182021-11-23 10:57:09ICER Proves Its Lack of Business Acumen, Again
A recent Institute for Clinical and Economic Review (ICER) “Report on Unsupported Price Increases,” concluded that: “Among the top drugs with price increases in 2019…ICER determined that seven of 10 lacked adequate new evidence to demonstrate a substantial clinical benefit that was not yet previously known.” The impression left by the report is that drug companies arbitrarily raise prices without good reason. As with so many ICER products, the study is misleading and demonstrates a profound lack of business acumen.
https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/WordPress-Blog-Post-Featured-Image-3-1.png 512 1024 Tom Birmingham https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/logo_440x96.png Tom Birmingham2021-02-02 02:55:052021-11-23 10:45:15Tax credit scholarship program would give Catholic schools fighting chance
I am among the countless individuals whose lives have been shaped by Catholic education; in my case, it was attending high school at Austin Prep. Despite a stellar record, Catholic schools are facing a grim financial picture. But a recent U.S. Supreme Court decision gives new hope to the schools and to the many Massachusetts families with children who would benefit from attending them.
https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/WordPress-Blog-Post-Featured-Image-5.png 512 1024 Kendra Espinoza https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/logo_440x96.png Kendra Espinoza2021-01-16 09:21:452021-11-23 10:55:28Tax Credits, Religious Schools And You
Six years ago, I met with Erica Smith of the Institute for Justice in a Montana coffee shop, where I agreed to be the lead plaintiff in a lawsuit about the use of funds from a state education tax credit program for children attending religious schools. This past June, in Espinoza v. Montana Department of Revenue, the U.S. Supreme Court reversed Montana’s highest court and ruled that if parents use funds from the program to access private education, religious school options cannot be excluded.
https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/SERSD3-e1606928413182-620x410-1.jpg 410 620 Tom Birmingham https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/logo_440x96.png Tom Birmingham2021-01-05 12:10:572021-12-29 12:21:38Voc-tech schools thriving despite pandemic strictures
HANDS-ON EDUCATION plays a critical role at Massachusetts regional vocational-technical high schools, where students alternate weekly between academics and shop classes. Given that reality, you’d think the schools would be particularly hard hit by the switch to hybrid models under which students are in a physical school building only half the time. But thanks to innovative approaches to coping with pandemic-related restrictions, voc-techs are successfully bucking statewide public-school enrollment trends.
https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/uniformed-students-e1370306305442.jpg 304 450 Jamie Gass https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/logo_440x96.png Jamie Gass2020-12-03 16:44:092021-11-23 10:24:03Education tax credits don’t cost taxpayers a cent
This op-ed has appeared in WGBH News, The Providence Journal,…
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In response to a collapse in MBTA service in the winter of 2015, the newly formed Fiscal and Management Control Board (FMCB) set the authority on a course of bold reforms. The COVID-19 pandemic is once again presenting new and significant challenges to T leadership that require a rethinking of how service is delivered to stave off painful service cuts.
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Covid-19 will frame economic policy discussions for years to come, just as the Great Recession did a decade ago. The economic impact of the pandemic includes widespread job losses, and millions of Americans are at risk of falling into poverty. Covid-19 is also accelerating pre-existing market trends – such as automation and online shopping – and their potentially devastating impact on the thousands of small businesses vulnerable to these market shifts. Will these businesses be able to adapt?
https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/WordPress-Blog-Post-Featured-Image-1.png 512 1024 Tom Birmingham https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/logo_440x96.png Tom Birmingham2020-11-12 10:26:512021-10-28 13:33:09MCAS testing essential to address falling test scores
Amid the chaos that was created by schools suddenly being shuttered in March as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, it made sense to cancel administration of Massachusetts Comprehensive Assessment System (MCAS) tests. But supporters of pending legislation that would place a four-year moratorium on using MCAS as a high school graduation requirement and create a commission to study alternatives to the tests are no longer responding to a crisis; they are using it to advance their anti-reform agenda.
https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/Allston-map.png 669 1128 Mary Connaughton https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/logo_440x96.png Mary Connaughton2020-10-13 08:04:442020-10-16 08:15:03During construction, the Allston Mass. Pike project must address commuters’ needs
As part of the state’s $1 billion reconfiguration of the Massachusetts Turnpike in Allston, Transportation Secretary Stephanie Pollack recently announced that a narrow strip of land known as “the throat,” will be considered for an at-grade option in addition to a proposal to rebuild the highway viaduct by Boston University.
https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/Copy-of-Banner-2.png 512 1024 Jim Stergios https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/logo_440x96.png Jim Stergios2020-09-01 10:34:422021-02-15 15:55:17Executive branch overreach, blanket orders having harmful effects
At the outset of the pandemic, limited knowledge and the need to mitigate risk understandably led to political overreach. At this point in the disaster response, though, we are far better at distinguishing fact from fiction and policies that have worked from those that have not.
https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/Bio_Black-History-Month_Emmett-Till_Legacy_SF_HD.jpg 810 1440 Jamie Gass https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/logo_440x96.png Jamie Gass2020-08-28 11:16:192021-11-23 10:36:25When ignorance and violence are permitted to trump justice
This week marks the 65th anniversary of the murder of Emmett Till, a 14-year old black boy from Chicago who was killed by two white Mississippians for whistling in the presence of a white woman.
https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/3-1.jpg 474 375 Jamie Gass https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/logo_440x96.png Jamie Gass2020-08-28 10:53:172021-10-28 13:41:34Should the federal government provide free, universal child care?
Free, universal child care provided by the federal government would be contrary to the spirit of the Founders’ view of K-12 education as the constitutional domain of state and local governments.
https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/BestPractices-2.jpg 1558 1926 Jamie Gass https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/logo_440x96.png Jamie Gass2020-07-20 12:52:372021-11-23 10:50:30Education tax credit programs extend choice to families who can’t afford private schools or to move to a tony community
Thanks to the Supreme Court’s Espinoza ruling, many more students can reap the benefits of school choice
https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/stjosephs.jpg 563 680 Tom Birmingham https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/logo_440x96.png Tom Birmingham2020-07-17 10:02:442021-01-28 15:27:29The Virtual Lessons Catholic Schools Can Teach
This op-ed originally appeared in The Boston Pilot. By Tom…
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Even in a time of painful divisions in our country, there is little doubt among people of good faith that what Derek Chauvin and three other former Minneapolis police officers did to George Floyd was criminal. If they are indeed convicted of a felony, how is it that the former officers could very well be immune from civil liability?