Changing the country’s education policy to produce better results

Aug 4, 2023, 9:30 PM

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Sydnee Dickson, Utah State superintendent of public instruction, discusses how common ground on education in Utah can be reached. (Photo: Adobe Stock)

(Photo: Adobe Stock)

SALT LAKE CITY — The education policy is one of the most important political issues that the nation is dealing with.

For years, Congress has been directly involved in dealing with the education policy. Some would say that has led to some bumps in the road for students, teachers and parents. That leads to the question of whether Congress should be so involved in the country’s education policy. Or, should individual states have the authority to make the decisions they feel are best?

Christine Fairbanks, an education fellow for the Sutherland Institute, joined KSL NewsRadio this week to discuss if there is a better way forward.


She says Congress doesn’t have an enumerated power in education. In fact, she says based on the 10th Amendment, that powers should go to the respective states.

“But still when people are running for Congress,” she said. “They’re being asked constantly, ‘How would you fix this issue? How do you get rid of this controversy?’ And really their job should be to resist that impulse to say ‘I can fix it.’ And point back to the states.”

Putting education policy at the state level

Fairbanks explains where things should go from here.

“But where there are existing policies,” she said. “Really, the next step is to kind of drawback the power to give it back to the states.”

As an example, Fairbanks says federal funding could be freed up and used for new scholarships. 

Getting away from the one-hat-fits-all approach, KSL NewsRadio’s Boyd Matheson, asked, “How do we get to a better path?”

“We have way too many policies that already exist,” Fairbanks said. “And there needs to be some sort of review of those and then creative thinking about how to give that back to the states.”

Inside Sources with Boyd Matheson can be heard on weekdays from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m.

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Send it to the KSL NewsRadio team here.

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Changing the country’s education policy to produce better results