Too Young to Test, End of Life Options, Ballot Initiatives and More


The Public Leadership Institute is a nonprofit educational group organized to raise public awareness on key issues and to develop public leaders who will improve the economic and social conditions of all Americans. To join, click here.

Too Young to Test Act: A recent report from the Council of the Great City Schools found that there is far too much reliance on standardized testing in public schools, hurting schoolchildren, teachers and administrators. The federal No Child Left Behind law requires testing in grades 3-8, but most school systems go beyond that mandate and test in grades K-2 as well. This is developmentally inappropriate—the Too Young to Test Act would stop it.

Our goal is not to change beliefs, it is to change behavior: In almost every jurisdiction, in order to win political battles, we must persuade at least some non-aligned or “swing” voters. But these “persuadable voters” are hardly interested in or informed about politics and policy. Simultaneously, “confirmation bias” makes it almost impossible to change their beliefs. Read about how to handle the problem on IdeaLog, our blog intended to raise eyebrows and engage minds.

End of Life Options: Tuesday, November 17 @3pm Eastern, 2pm Central, 1pm Mountain, Noon Pacific. California Governor Jerry Brown recently signed the End of Life Option Act, authorizing medical aid in dying. The fact is, end of life policies are being enacted all over the nation. Come learn about it from our special guest, Charmaine Manansala, National Field Director for Compassion & Choices. Register for the webinar here.

AP analysis of the 2015 elections: The Associated Press concludes that it was not a good election for either party. Red states stayed red and blue states stayed blue. The full story is here.

Democracy won at the ballot box: Three very significant ballot initiatives recently won. Maine voters approved a strengthening of their Clean Elections Act. Ohio voters approved a bipartisan redistricting commission. And voters in Seattle set up a unique system of campaign finance called “democracy vouchers.” Bill Moyers explains here.

Latest Compendium of State and Local Legislation in 2015: What’s happened so far in 2015? Read about it in our Compendium. If you have additions to suggest, please contact mweiss@publicleadershipinstitute.org.