Publication Date: September 12, 2014
In this volume, political insider Christopher Cross updates his critically acclaimed bestseller with new chapters and important new insights into future education policy. Cross draws on his own experience in Washington, along with research and interviews, to present a highly readable history of federal education policy, from WWII to the Obama administration. The book highlights the key players who helped shape federal policy because, as Cross writes in his introduction, “policy development is woven of personalities, events, and timing.” This fascinating chronicle demonstrates, among other things, how federal policy has been a constant influence on what states and local districts do, especially with respect to students most at risk.
Critical Acclaim for Political Education—
“Christopher Cross does an excellent, even-handed job….If we are to make intelligent choices about where the nation is headed, if we are to choose between competing approaches, it is important that we understand how and why we have come to where we are today.” —From the Foreword by Richard Riley, former U.S. Secretary of Education and Ted Sanders, President of the Education Commission of the States
“Christopher Cross is one of the nation’s foremost authorities on federal education policy. This book is essential reading for those who wish to understand the complex issues that have shaped federal education policy in the past and are guiding this new period of a greatly enlarged federal role.” —James B. Hunt, former Governor of North Carolina
“Chris Cross's analysis is not only thoroughly researched; it is an insightful and compelling reading. For those of us interested in anticipating the next steps in the evolution of public education policy in this country, Political Education should be required reading." —Nancy S. Grasmick, State Superintendent of Schools, Maryland State Department of Education
"Concise but illuminating…chock-full of historical nuggets." —Education Week
"The book is clearly written, informative, and generally well-balanced." —Harvard Educational Review
"Interesting and informative…Cross has done an excellent job in contextually framing federal education policy development and implementation." —Teachers College Record
"Rarely does one find a book on educational policy as accessible and as fact-filled as this volume by Christopher Cross…It will help educators of all stripes to better understand the how, why, and who of federal education policy." —Book Review Digest
Christopher T. Cross is chairman of Cross & Joftus, an educational consulting firm, and a distinguished senior fellow at the Education Commission of the States. During his 32 years in Washington, D.C., he served in both the executive and legislative branches, as an assistant secretary in the U.S. Department of Education, as the Republican staff director of the House Committee on Education and Labor, and a deputy assistant secretary in the former Department of Health, Education and Welfare.
“As Political Education so clearly documents, we need to engage in a dialogue that is about our expectations and our commitment to education as a national priority.”
—From the Foreword by Brian Sandoval and Jeremy Anderson, Education Commission of the States
“In this incisive update, Cross provides the politics, personalities, and underlying ethos that shape trends and eras of federal policymaking.”
—Mike Kirst, president, California State Board of Education
"Christopher Cross's new edition of Political Education comes at a crucial time. Now that some states are withdrawing from Common Core Standards because policymakers are characterizing a multi-state initiative as federal intrusion, that Courts are viewed as the refuge for parents fighting teacher tenure, and inequities within education and more generally are sharper than ever, we need Cross’ clear analysis of our complicated system more than ever."
—Susan Fuhrman, president, Teachers College, Columbia University