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State of the Debate
George Pyle
George Pyle has been a newspaper writer in Kansas, Utah, Upstate New York, and now Utah again, for more than 30 years - most of it as an editorial writer and columnist. Now on his second tour of duty on The Salt Lake Tribune Editorial Board, he has also done a stretch as a talk radio host, published a book on the ongoing flaws of U.S.agricultural policy and, in 1998, was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize for Editorial Writing. His most active bookmarks are Andrew Sullivan, Christopher Hitchens and Tina Brown. And he still thinks the Internet can be used for intelligent conversation and uplifting ideas.

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Western Editorial Sampler: Thoughts on education ...

An education theme to some recent editorials around the West:

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School funding: The last shall never be first — Salt Lake Tribune Editorial

It is time to stop being proud of the fact that Utah’s schools aren’t as bad as they might be, given the low levels of state funding they get, and start being ashamed of the fact that they are not as good as our students, our families and our businesses have every right to expect. ...

... This is the situation that Larry Shumway looked at day after day during his three years as Utah’s school superintendent. And it was the theme of his valedictory State of Education address delivered Tuesday.

"We cannot have the best school system in the country and be the lowest in the country in funding," Shumway said, stating the obvious. "We can’t be first if we are always last."

Wight a great pick to lead WSU — Ogden Standard-Examiner Editorial

Count us among those very pleased that Charles A. Wight, currently with the University of Utah, will soon become the 12th president of Weber State University. ...

Student loans fuel rising tuition costs — Deseret News Editorial

As today’s youth chart their future, they face a dilemma. The skills afforded by an excellent college education have never been more important, but the costs of getting that education have never been so high.

Ironically, the primary public policy response to this dilemma — government sponsored student loans — may actually exacerbate the underlying problem of runaway college costs. ...

Students should have to pay for some things — Nampa (Idaho) Press-Tribune Editorial

... According to a lawsuit filed by former Nampa School District Superintendent Russell Joki and other parents, Idaho has failed to meet its constitutional requirement to provide a free education because some students have paid registration and class fees for field trips, science labs and supplies for art and other classes. ...

... This is a lawsuit in search of focus. ...

U of I liberal-bias trial is important step by courts — Des Moines Register Editorial

Iowans have the opportunity this week to witness an important example of their government in action rarely seen by the general public.

The event will be the trial in Davenport of a discrimination lawsuit filed by an unsuccessful applicant for a faculty position at the University of Iowa College of Law.

The case raises significant questions about lack of ideological diversity at the law school — specifically, liberal bias — and whether the faculty plays an outsized role in the dean’s hiring decisions.

You won’t have to go to the courthouse to see this trial, however, because the proceedings will be video-recorded in their entirety and are expected to be posted on the federal courts’ website. ...

UC Berkeley’s ‘hostile environment’ question — Los Angeles Times Editorial

The U.S. Department of Education has launched an investigation into whether Jewish students at the university are the victims of a "pervasive hostile environment" in violation of federal civil rights laws.

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