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Watchdog Podcasts. Taking you behind the headlines and inside the stories. We examine the news that matters to you - from the school board to the state Capitol and Washington DC - because we know that someone has to keep an eye on how government is spending your money. Education, health care, budgets and more; our reporters have the inside story that you need to know - and a free market perspective that you won't find anywhere else.
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Now displaying: Category: sit down and shut up
Jun 15, 2015

This is “Sit Down, Shut Up,” Watchdog.org’s podcast examining education issues at the national, state and local levels.

Hosts Eric Boehm and Moriah Costa take a critical look at the education establishment, the growth of school choice and the ways free markets can be a part of fixing America’s broken school system.

In this week's episode, we take a look at Lee Siegel's insulting New York Times op-ed in which the writer congratulated himself for defaulting on his student loans and advised other college graduates to do the same (while acknowledging that if everyone followed his advice, the entire higher education system would come crashing down on itself). 

Siegel's was roundly trounced on the Internet (from both the left and the right) for his endorsement of personal irresponsibility, and rightfully so.

Then, Costa sits down with Nina Rees, CEO of the National Alliance of Public Charter Schools, to reflect on the past school year and look at where charter schools have seen growth - and where they are sorely needed in the near future.  Not surprisingly, it's politics that generally gets in the way of giving kids and parents more educational choice, Rees says.

Jun 3, 2015

By Ben Yount and Moriah Costa | Watchdog Radio

This is “Sit Down, Shut Up,” Watchdog.org’s podcast examining education issues at the national, state and local levels.

Hosts Ben Yount and Moriah Costa takes a critical look at the education establishment, the growth of school choice and the ways free markets can be a part of fixing America’s broken school system.

In this week's episode, Yount and Costa take a look at an odd law in Texas that makes it a crime to skip school. And everything is bigger in Texas, including the punishments for truancy.

If you skip school, you could end up in prison. Not juvenile hall - real prison.

Not surprisingly, the cops in Texas love enforcing these rules because they can make money off fines that are also charged against truant students.  They've raked in some $16 million las year, a Watchdog investigation found.

Then, are ESAs the next "big thing" in school choice?  They let parents choose the best schools for their children, explains Leslie Hiner from the Friedman Foundation for Educational Choice.

May 26, 2015

This is “Sit Down, Shut Up,” Watchdog.org’s podcast examining education issues at the national, state and local levels.

 

Host Ben Yount takes a critical look at the education establishment, the growth of school choice and the ways free markets can be a part of fixing America’s broken school system.

In this week’s episode, Yount is joined by Watchdog education reporter Moriah Costa to discuss some legislation in a variety of states that would increase the number of charter schools and other school choice options.  Is the breakdown in being able to pay for traditional public schools going to be the thing that finally breaks through legislative oppisiton to school choice?

Or, perhaps, is it the growth of empowered minority families who are demanding better schools for their kids in America's inner cities?

 

May 19, 2015

This is “Sit Down, Shut Up,” Watchdog.org’s podcast examining education issues at the national, state and local levels.

Host Ben Yount take a critical look at the education establishment, the growth of school choice and the ways free markets can be a part of fixing America’s broken school system.

In this week's episode, Yount sits down with Paul Brennan at the recent Chicago School Choice Conference to talk about the growth of school choice options across the country. Even though many school choice programs have been limited in their scope and targeted to only the poor, they are undoubtedly working.

Then, Yount chats with Dan McGrath, president of Leo High School in Chicago. The school is in the middle of one of the poorest and most violent neighborhoods in the city, but the school had a 100 percent graduation rate - miles ahead of the public schools across the rest of the city.

If Illinois had a legitimate school choice program, McGrath says students "would be lined up out the door" because the school could handle twice as many students as they currently have.

May 11, 2015

This is “Sit Down, Shut Up,” Watchdog.org’s podcast examining education issues at the national, state and local levels.

Hosts Ben Yount and Moriah Costa take a critical look at the education establishment, the growth of school choice and the ways free markets can be a part of fixing America’s broken school system.

In this week's episode, Yount and Costa welcome fellow Watchdog reporter Yael Ossowski to the program to discuss the growth of charter schools in America. Despite what some recent studies put forward by opponets of charter schools say, there is little evidence that charter schools are reinstituting segregation or otherwise creating a race-based alternative to public schools.

In fact, its quite the opposite: some of the biggest growth of charter schools is in inner cities, where traditional public schools have failed to do a good job and where charters are specifically targeting minority students.

May 6, 2015

This is “Sit Down, Shut Up,” Watchdog.org’s podcast examining education issues at the national, state and local levels.

Hosts Ben Yount and Moriah Costa takes a critical look at the education establishment, the growth of school choice and the ways free markets can be a part of fixing America’s broken school system.

In this week's episode, Yount sits down with Andrew Broy of the Illinois Network of Charter Schools, which is pushing for more school choice in the state. Although Illinois has historically been one of the states with the fewest school choice options, the financial status of the state's schools - particularly those in Chicago - is forcing lawmakers to consider some alternatives.

Apr 30, 2015

This is “Sit Down And Shut Up,” Watchdog.org’s podcast examining education issues at the national, state and local levels.

Hosts Ben Yount and Moria Costa takes a critical look at the education establishment, the growth of school choice and the ways free markets can be a part of fixing America’s broken school system.

This week, they discuss a prom-posal gone awry. A high school student tried to ask a girl to prom by declaring himself to "be the bomb" - you know, slang for being the coolest or the best?  Well, school officials don't know how to take a joke and the kid ended up in trouble for making a bomb threat.

Then, would it be better if we could try college classes for free before deciding to pay for them?

Apr 22, 2015

This is “Sit Down And Shut Up,” Watchdog.org’s podcast examining education issues at the national, state and local levels.

Host Ben Yount takes a critical look at the education establishment, the growth of school choice and the ways free markets can be a part of fixing America’s broken school system.

This week, Yount chats with Watchdog reporter Evan Grossman, who authored an investigation into so-called "ghost teachers" in Philadelphia.  Ghost teachers are public school employees, paid by the taxpayers, who work full-time for the local teachers' union.  In some cases, Grossman reveals, these teachers have not set foot in a classroom for more than a decade, but they continue to collect pay and accrue pension benefits. Even the new Secretary of Education is a former ghost teacher.

Apr 16, 2015

By Ben Yount and Bre Payton | Watchdog Radio

This is “Sit Down And Shut Up,” Watchdog.org’s podcast examining education issues at the national, state and local levels.

Hosts Ben Yount and Bre Payton take a critical look at the education establishment, the growth of school choice and the ways free markets can be a part of fixing America’s broken school system.

In this week's podcast, Yount and Payton are joined by Watchdog.org education reporter Moria Costa, who brings with her a scary tale of textbook companies using schoolkids as data mines. It's all in the name of good marketing, but it's putting our kids identities at risk and school officials are letting it happen.

Apr 9, 2015

By Ben Yount and Bre Payton | Watchdog Radio

This is “Sit Down And Shut Up,” Watchdog.org’s podcast examining education issues at the national, state and local levels.

Hosts Ben Yount and Bre Payton take a critical look at the education establishment, the growth of school choice and the ways free markets can be a part of fixing America’s broken school system.

In this week's episode, Yount and Payton take a look at mandatory testing rules in states like Illinois, which recently decided that kids are allowed to opt-out of taking those tests, but only if they do so themselves. Is it fair to force kids to stand up to their teachers, or should we be teaching them to "just say no" anyway?

Mar 27, 2015

This is “Sit Down And Shut Up,” Watchdog.org’s podcast examining education issues at the national, state and local levels. Hosts Ben Yount and Bre Payton take a critical look at the education establishment, the growth of school choice and the ways free markets can be a part of fixing America’s broken school system.

In this week's episode, Yount and Payton are joined by Watchdog education reporter Moriah Costa, who explains some of the problems facing charter schools inWashington, D.C.

The nation's capital has dozens of charter schools, and 44 percent of all students in the city attend charter schools. The charter system was recently ranked number one in the country for a seventh consecutive year, but there are questions about funding - and about whether some charter operators are doing the right thing with that funding.

Mar 20, 2015

This is “Sit Down And Shut Up,” Watchdog.org’s podcast examining education issues at the national, state and local levels.

Hosts Ben Yount and Bre Payton take a critical look at the education establishment, the growth of school choice and the ways free markets can be a part of fixing America’s broken school system.

In this week's episode, our hosts look at how school choice is making parents' and students' lives better, as Minnesota is considering a bill that would allow for educational savings accounts.

Then, what the heck is Yik Yak? It's a new, anonymous social media program that is causing all sorts of issues in schools and on college campuses.

Mar 11, 2015

This is “Sit Down And Shut Up,” Watchdog.org’s podcast examining education issues at the national, state and local levels.

Hosts Ben Yount and Bre Payton take a critical look at the education establishment, the growth of school choice and the ways free markets can be a part of fixing America’s broken school system.

In this week’s episode, our hosts discuss the rising cost of college education and how federal subsidies are causing an inflationary bubble, rather than making college more affordable. Then, Ben sits down with an Illinois high school student who helped organize a walk-out at her school over student opposition to Common Core tests.

Feb 26, 2015

Welcome to “Sit Down And Shut Up,” Watchdog.org’s podcast examining education issues at the national, state and local levels. Hosts Ben Yount and Bre Payton take a critical look at the education establishment, the growth of school choice and the ways free markets can be a part of fixing America’s broken school system.

In this week’s episode: Yount and Payton look at the exploding cost of college in the U.S. Are your student loans putting your personal information at risk? If you’ve defaulted on a loan, it might have been passed over to a debt-collection agency that doesn’t meet federal data security standards.

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