WASHINGTON, Aug. 9, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan will take stock of American education in the run up to the presidential election during a National Press Club Speakers Luncheon on Oct. 2. Duncan will reflect on the achievements and setbacks of the past four years, and offer his views on the challenges ahead for American schools.
As secretary, Duncan helped to secure congressional support for President Obama's policies in education, including the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act's $100 billion to help fund 325,000 teaching jobs. The administration has supported an increase in Pell grants, reform efforts such as Race to the Top and interventions in low-performing schools. The greater funding for education also included $10 billion to avoid teacher layoffs and a $500-million national competition for early learning programs.
Duncan has granted states waivers from No Child Left Behind, a program that some critics say has created a "hodgepodge" of accountability systems. He also has launched an initiative to improve the teaching profession. The question now is whether the investments have paid off, and how looming budget cuts might affect education. Before becoming secretary, Duncan served as the chief executive officer of the Chicago Public Schools, where he won praise for uniting education reformers, teachers and businesses behind an aggressive reform agenda.
The Press Club luncheon will begin promptly at 12:30 p.m. Remarks will begin at 1:00 p.m., followed by a question-and-answer session, ending at 2 p.m. Advance reservations should be made through (202) 662-7501 or [email protected]. The cost of luncheon admission is $19 for National Press Club members, $30 for their guests, and $37 for the general public. Tickets must be purchased at time of reservation.
National Press Club Luncheons are webcast live on press.org. Follow the conversation on Twitter using the hashtag #NPCLunch, or on Facebook at (facebook.com/PressClubDC) and Twitter (@PressClubDC). Submit questions for speakers in advance and during the live event by sending them to @QNPCLunch on Twitter. Or email a question in advance, type DUNCAN in the subject line and send to [email protected] before 10 a.m. on the day of event.
The Press Club is on the 13th floor, 529 14th Street, NW, Washington, D.C. Credentialed press may cover this event.
The National Press Club is the world's leading professional organization for journalists with more than 3,400 members worldwide representing every major news organization. More than 250,000 people visit the Club each year to attend more than 2,000 events. The Club was founded in 1908 and is on the web at press.org.