PADM 550
Education Policy Brief Assignment Instructions

The purpose of this assignment is to apply the May, Can, Should model through analysis of a specific education policy. An effective tool for finding this legislation is through and the cost of the legislation through the Congressional Budget Office at

For the analysis paper, this is best done in the following manner:

Application of the Biblical principles – when discussing the topic of the week, make sure to apply the Biblical principles discussed in question 1 of the Synthesis paper to the specific policy that you’re discussing. How does it meet natural law, inalienable rights, federalism, etc.?

Constitutional authority – what is the Constitutional authority for the federal government to get involved? Avoid the use of the General Welfare clause as it becomes a catch-all for anything that a politician wants to get passed.

Political feasibility – what is the likelihood that the policy will become law? What is the political and social support for the policy?

Financial feasibility – what is the policy expected to do to the national debt or spending? For example, the new COVID stimulus just put us another $2 trillion in debt but was widely supported by both politicians and the public.
Practical feasibility – what are the logistical resources needed for implementation (buildings, personnel, new programs, etc.) and what are the steps for implementation (ex; the Affordable Care Act needed functional websites in order to be implemented, the lack of these created severe problems with implementation). 

Relate this back to specific Biblical and Constitutional authorities and discuss whether or not the policy should be supported based on this and the feasibility of implementation.

The goal of this is to critically analyze an education policy to objectively determine if the federal government should be legitimately involved in the policy being discussed and if the policy is right for the country.

You are expected to submit a 1 1/2–2-page paper (not including the title page, abstract, and reference page) in current APA format in which the May-Can-Should model is applied in the context of the policy focus. Be certain to emphasize a focused analysis of a particular federal policy (either already implemented or proposed) chosen from the policy concentration area for the assigned module. You must include citations from:

1. all of the required reading and presentations from the assigned module/week
1. all relevant sources from Module 1: Week 1 and Module 2: Week 2 (you MUST use the “Biblical Principles of Government” article), and
1. 3–5 outside sources. NOTE: These sources should be focused on the problem and the piece of legislation, and you may find that you need more than just 3-5 sources to adequately research and discuss these items.
1. Please feel free to use the link provided in the assignment resources for the purposes of additional research.

Please ensure that you review and follow the provided Policy Brief Template found in the assignment resources.

Note: Your assignment will be checked for originality via the Turnitin plagiarism tool.

Page 2 of 2

Education Policy, Home Schools, and Christian Schools
Good morning. I’m Professor Cynthia Dunbar, School of Law and I want to talk to you a little bit about education, educational policy, and its connection with the civil government. I’m reminded of a quote by Augustine talks about when he looks back, he looks to the ancients to understand the distinctions between those things which would seem to be alike, which are really different. And the subtle difference that we’ve encountered today in our modern day. What I like to call socialized education policy is the compulsion at the hand of the civil government. The civil government is structured to be the sword tear of those who do evil. It is to promote good at the sanction evil. And instead has become an all-pervasive controlling entity that invades into every part of our lives. What areas that the Founding Fathers originally deemed would be separate and distinct from civil government control. One of the largest areas that they have gained control over, husband, education, educational policy, and trying to create a homogenous society. What I find interesting is that we have moved forward by the secular sacred ideology based upon Play-Doh of dualism and moved away from the Judeo Christian understanding of jurisdiction. And let me break that down for you. In layman’s terminology, the Bible gives us a clear framework for where the civil government is to provide and have jurisdiction or authority. Any area that they go beyond authority is all authority is given by God, becomes raw tyrannical power. It’s the viewpoint that gave the founders the insight to draw a very high barriers from the civil government going beyond into areas of our lives. They deemed inappropriate. It’s the very basis for the establishment of the Bill of Rights saying that Congress shall make no laws. Because it was an understanding that the civil government only got to extend so far and that the remaining areas of jurisdiction where reserved to the states and the people, and specifically to those areas that the Bible talks about personal jurisdiction, familial jurisdiction, and ecclesiastical jurisdiction. And this may sound like big words, but basically what that means is those personal areas. The areas such as our religious liberties, where we get to worship God according to the dictates of our conscience. It’s a very personal area that we have control over. The founders understood the civil government had absolutely no right to control or invade. The same thing with the millennial jurisdiction, which is simply the brights and the family. The area where the family is to control. The areas where the family is responsible before God. And when we look at that, those also protect our religious liberties. Because Madison, who was known as the father of our Constitution, is the fourth president. He basically detailed very clearly that religion is our duties owed to God. That means we have to understand jurisdictional from the Bible, what duties we owe as individuals, as families, as the corporate body of Christ. And all of those areas were deemed religious and therefore, they were outside the purview of the civil government control. We have now invaded into what we call dualism or the area of predominant secular worldview. And the bigger problem is that not only has society as a whole bought into the secular sacred divide, much of the body of Christ has bought into this ideology of secularism. What secularism does is it teaches that there’s an area, a large area of our day of our life that is separate and distinct from religion or faith. And clearly this ideology is hostile to biblical worldview. The worldview that embraces the ideology and coercions. One verses 16 and 17, that all things were made by and through Christ and for His glory. So there can’t be an area of our lives if we’re going to adhere to a biblical worldview where it is separate and distinct from our faith. And yet that is the very ideology, the very premise they have built our modern day socialized education system upon. Let me break this down for you a little bit further. When we first started having public education as we know it today. And I actually don’t even like to use the term public education because public education could be just community organized where parents and families come together and decide to establish an educational structure and delegate that authority. Biblically they have absolutely the right to do. And that was historically what we saw in our nation until the late 1800s. With a push with Horace Mann for what is now our modern day, compulsory, mandatory tax supported public, governmental education, or what I say for short, are socialized education system. So in that framework and the 1800s, they came forward with the, the premise that citizens could not be good citizens if they were not moral, that they in fact could not be moral if they were not religiously trained. And that they couldn’t be trained in the teachings of the Bible if they were illiterate. This was the whole push back in the 1800s to try and get government to take over control and authority of the education system. Of course, we see how far we have come from that, that original premise. There was a bigger flaw in all of that of healing that authority over to the civil government. And we see that come forward in 1947. Some of the beginning cases dealing with our religious liberties, the no Establishment Clause and the Free Exercise Clause. Many of them have come out of the socialized education system. And that is because this, there’s an automatic tension that is going to be developed within a compulsory education system as to which type of ideology, worldview, and belief systems are going to be promulgated within the classroom. So in 1947, the landmark case of Eberson versus Board of Education, they were dealing with whether or not the government could take tax dollars and reimburse parents for their expenditures for transportation or getting their children to school. The holding itself was not egregious or to disconcerting. And so I think that kind of flew under the radar as to the impact of this case. But the dicta or the language that the judge is used in this case is very telling. Justice Jackson’s descent talks about the absolute necessary presupposition that is made in order to develop the public education system as we knew it in 1947. And that is this, that there’s a presumption that secular, worldly or temporal education can be separated from religious instruction or ideology. The understanding being that if in fact that premise or presupposition was not correct, then public education as a compulsory, mandatory, tax supported entity at the force of civil government authority, could not stand because it would be an affront to our First Amendment religious liberties. Of course, the justices gloss over that and assume that the presupposition is valid, that we can in fact separate out a pursuit of temporal or what they call worldly knowledge in order to later than determine what our religious beliefs or ideologies will be. Of course, this is again hostile to a true biblical worldview and does not align with our underlie Judeo-Christian tenets upon which our nation was founded. So what happened in ever since they presented the presumption clearly was never addressed. And we move forward into the 1960s with the angle case in the landmark case of Abington V-shaped. An Abington is the case where Madeline Murray O’Hare, of course, brought along with a companion case, a lawsuit to take prayer out of school. And a lot of people have talked about that historically as to the impact of education and its demise shortly thereafter. But what we see in that cases, there’s also a discussion of the same principles the Jackson brought forward in his dissent in ever seen in 1947. And that is again, this, the presumption that we can separate out worldly wisdom, the pursuit of worldly wisdom from our religious beliefs and instruction and ideology. So what has happened is that parents signed over their authority, their responsibility before God, as Madison would say, our duties owed to God, being religious in nature. That they are responsible before God to train up a child in the way they should go. And instead of handing that over to the civil government to be what we would deem more of a Greek state. Parents Patriot ideology, that the government is now the parent responsible for ensuring the education of the children. Not only that, we move forward to more recent Supreme Court cases that started coming out in the seventies That started talking about the absolute need for a primary secular purpose. So what does that mean for educational policy? That everything that’s presented has to have a primary secular purpose. Which again, if that is inherently by definition hostile to a Judeo-Christian belief, then everything that’s presented within socialized education system now necessarily by the court. So neutrality standard has to be hostile to the Judeo-Christian tenets and beliefs. That all things are related to our faith and connected to our praise and worship of Jesus Christ. I kind of agree with Dennis Prager is assessment that when we start talking about secular or worldly wisdom, we’re really talking about an oxymoron because the biblical viewpoint is that the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom. And so for pursuing wisdom in the absence of the fear of the award, then we clearly are not pursuing wisdom. So now we’re in a situation where we have force decades, bought into this faulty premise, faulty presupposition upon which socialized to socialized education is based of the secular sacred divide. And so everything that’s presented within the classroom is now having to be presented with this mystical realm of neutrality. This we neither promote nor inhibit religion where we present, not proselytize, teach, and not indoctrinate, educate, not indoctrinate. This is dictated from Supreme Court cases. But the reality is that that’s impossible. When I sat as an elected member of the Texas State Board of Education. And the reason that’s relevant is because a lot of what’s driving the educational policy is not only governmental policy, the private publishing companies who are going to be driven by the monies that they will make in order to sell, by selling their textbooks. Texas historically was the 800 pound gorilla in this policy establishment. Because basically if the publishers are looking at the jurisdictions that by the greatest number of books, that is Texas or California. California actually needs more books than Texas. But Texas ends up being the controlling force because we can actually pay for ours a lesson in economics and governmental solvency, but that’s for another class. But anyway, we had a 15 member elected board that would be adopting what we know and those in education schools and understand what we call what we call the teeth, which would be the Texas Essential knowledge and skills. It’s the framework of what every child is expected to know in order to gain proficiency, to be advanced. And in that development, what I saw very clearly was an every single issue that we were voting on as a governmental body. We were determining which viewpoints were acceptable. It’s the heightened extreme version of viewpoint discrimination, which is a necessary evil of the government, determining what the majority opinion is going to establish for what is deemed right or wrong. Now, some people waste that will then take it out of the political system handed over to the experts. But that in and of itself is a very dangerous thing as we know, whenever we give over the principles of what is deemed right or wrong to those who are classified the experts, then we can homogenize the society towards a belief system based on simply those people that we are saying have the requisite knowledge, those beliefs and ideologies many times and that being hostile to opposing beliefs and principles. This is the very thing that our founding fathers were trying to avoid. When I was on the board, I ended up doing an interview with Norwegian international radio. And they were talking about the education policy being a political, being political in nature. And said, we don’t do this here in Norway. We, it’s foreign to us. We don’t understand it. We have our appointed expert to determine all the policy of what the children will learn throughout their years of primary and secondary education. And I just explained to them, yes, I understand it’s political and it can become very volatile at times. In America, we believe, to have a select group of people sitting in their ivory towers telling everyone what they have to believe is what leads to things like the Third Reich. Because you do see that when people come into control in a dictatorial type governmental setting, the quickest and fastest way to get there is to control the ideologies and beliefs prevalent within society. And that is why we had our first amendment, not only religious liberties, freedom of speech, and all of that was to allow for dissenting viewpoints without getting into problems of being tried for tyranny or seditious liable. So now what we have is a problem where we have governmental policy being directed that’s mandated to be secular, which is automatically hostile, hostile. And let me break it down for you even to a greater extent. Even if a child is being taken to a school where the teachers are predominantly Christian and they’re not going to be overtly saying anything within the classroom that would necessarily come across is confronting or combative to their faith. The problem is the very structure now, because the government has established it. And the standard of a primary secular purpose is that five days a week. Seven hours a day. Every single month for nine months out of the year, the students are being dropped off with the Understood, known or given that this is the part of your day that is secular or irrelevant for mere faith or your belief in God. It’s only that part of your day where you’re pursuing knowledge and wisdom, your career, and this large section of your life that has no correlation or connection to your faith? It’s no, it’s not surprising that we now have students going through that framework for 13 years of their life coming out, going on to college and all of a sudden questioning their whole basic understanding of their belief system, Bible, and God as they know him to be. Because that framework has been methodically attacked over the course of the years and it’s a necessary thing. What’s the government gets involved in the homogenizing and beliefs in order to not promote one religious ideology over another. We know in fact that this was not something that would be deemed healthy in terms of religious freedoms. When you think back to Jefferson’s morning and admonition that to compel a man to furnish monies for opinions which he does not believe will be sinful and tyrannical. And that is what we have when we have a socialized public education system where the government is now at the force of the sword, commanding everyone to pay in there their dollars to make sure that the public system is funded, even if their beliefs are what are being taught there are contrary to their religious convictions. Now, where does that put us? Well, what are the solutions? How do we deal with this? Especially now when we have the federal government through the unconstitutional Department of Education coming at, what’s going to be taught through Common Core Curriculum, which is about 85 percent of classroom instruction. Well, we need to have is we need to have a resurgence of parents taking back the authority and the responsibility to guide and direct the education of their children. And there’s a whole debate as to what that should look like in terms of vouchers or parental rights. In terms of parental rights, school choice is the first mode and directive to help us make meaningful advancements within educational policy. If the parents will realize that their children’s education ultimately is their responsibility and that they will make wise choices as to the delegation. If we can get tax exemptions through public policy. Where now it’s not a tax voucher where the government’s handing out money, where they still have the strings attached for regulation. But where it’s an exemption if you’re providing an alternative, which would be an alternative such as private education or homeschool in education, where the government is no longer having to pay for educating your children, but you’re taking that responsibility on for your own. And thereby the government’s giving you an exemption from having to pay into that normal socialized pool, then that is one thing that would make us have meaningful efforts towards reclaiming the authority of the parent to educate their child, and also hopefully begin to strip away monopoly that is now known as a socialized public education system.
(PAGE 328) Chapter 10 Education Policy

Educated in debt. Reports in recent years show that about three-quarters of recent graduates finished school with a loan debt, and the average debt is now over $33,000. The photo illustrates how many students feel the weight of this debt.
(PAGE 329) In 2018, nearly forty-three million Americans held some form of student debt, with total loans approaching $1.5 trillion.1 Student debt has been in the news often over the past few years, particularly in accounts about how this debt affects individuals’ dreams and futures, both subjects of rising concern. In January 2014, the White House convened a higher education summit that included over one hundred college and university presidents and members of the administration to discuss the issue of increasing access to college for low-income students. During the summit, participants presented what their institutions were doing as a commitment to improving opportunities for poor students to access a higher education and develop themselves for a better future. Both President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama addressed the summit and shared their own stories regarding the importance of a college education. Ms. Obama stated, “Right now, we’re missing out on so much potential because so many promising young people simply don’t believe that college can be a reality for them.”2 There are many factors that may lead one to believe that college may not be a reality, particularly for a low-income student, but one of the more important factors must be the increasing cost of college. During his time in office, President Obama often raised concerns about the increasing cost of college times, and he attempted as well to use his bully pulpit to drive home this point and convince state governments to reverse the trend of decreasing public support for higher education and encourage colleges and universities to be more cognizant of the cost increases that so greatly affect their students. President Trump and his education secretary, Betsy DeVos, have also raised concerns about student debt and college costs, citing the rising cost of tuition and the push for four-year degrees when shorter technical training may be more effective for students’ future careers.3 State support for higher education is much lower than in the past, and among the reasons are the rising costs in other areas of state spending, such as Medicare and state prisons, and a desire to keep taxes low. These are seen as higher priorities than spending on public higher education. Public colleges and universities often are forced to make up for lost state dollars by increasing tuition, This, in turn, can lead to more borrowing by students to pay for their education.

Many high school students and their parents are well aware of the plethora of college ranking systems—perhaps the most well known being the assessment provided by U.S. News and World Report, although such rankings also are done by publications such as Forbes, the Princeton Review, and others. But how visible is one of the most important aspects of higher education: its cost? Colleges are ranked, of course, on everything from academic quality to prettiest campus to biggest party school, and there are multiple problems with measuring academic quality. Academic quality is difficult to define, and it is perhaps even more difficult to collect the appropriate data. Yet as concerns about the value of higher education have become more pronounced, policymakers have started paying more attention not only to these indicators but also to the importance of costs.4

The cost and value of higher education was a major theme in the 2016 presidential elections, particularly in the primary contests between Senator Bernie Sanders and former secretary of state Hillary Clinton. Each sought to offer a concrete plan to address rising student debt, a vivid sign that both understood well how much the issue affects younger voters. Others, such as recently elected congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, have also spoken and campaigned on the idea of tuition-free college. Not only do these rising college costs affect students from low-income families who may not be able to afford a higher education, but they also can hamstring students with high levels of debt that (PAGE 330) they need to repay after graduation. Some questions remain as to what the federal government can really do to solve the problem. Terry Hartle, senior vice president for the American Council on Education, an organization that advocates for higher education, commented that “the federal government can ease the burden of tuition increases with financial aid, but there is no mechanism for it to force the states to maintain funding for highered.”5 On the other hand, Suzanne Mettler (2014) argues that while the states play an important role in keeping tuition down, there have been changes to the political and policy system at the federal level as well. These changes have shifted much federal higher education aid toward tax breaks and loan programs that have advantaged the rich and the lenders and have saddled students with an increasing amount of debt.

The issue of higher education cost is critical. Education has always been considered the great equalizer in the United States and an important aspect of its egalitarian and individualistic culture. A good education allows for social mobility and success, according to this perspective. If this access is decreased in the area of higher education—a level of education that more and more people believe is essential in our increasingly high-tech and changing world—then what happens to an individual’s ability to make ends meet and to the country’s ability to remain competitive in a global economy? Concerns about access to a quality education are also relevant for our students in the primary and secondary schools, but sometimes for different reasons
Education is one of the many public services that people take for granted. For some students, it provides the knowledge and skills that enable them to continue their studies in college. For many others, however, receiving a quality education is a difficult, if not impossible, task. Since the release of the federal report A Nation at Risk in 1983, there have been concerns about the quality of education in the United States. Although most people living in the United States are products of a public education system that has existed for almost as long as the nation itself, critics claim that the system is broken and that students are suffering from its inadequacies. Indeed, statistics suggest that U.S. students are not performing at the same levels as their counterparts in other countries. This chapter explores a number of different concerns associated with education in the United States at all levels including its quality, the costs of providing it, and the role of the federal and state governments in supporting it.


Education, especially public education, fulfills many of the nation’s basic goals and has done so since the country’s founding. First, according to the beliefs of Thomas Jefferson, it provides an avenue to ensure the continuation of U.S. democracy (Mayo 1942). How can people be active, engaged participants in democratic processes if they lack the ability to read and understand the issues? Second, education helps to assimilate large numbers of immigrants. Finally, it is the primary mechanism for social mobility in the United States, as the educated are better able to secure jobs that raise their economic and social status. This goal fits nicely with the American ideal of upward mobility and rewarding those who work hard. An educated population has a better chance of being productive and taking care of itself. Such people are less likely to need government assistance.

(PAGE 331) Government took it upon itself to provide education for both moral and political reasons. Morally, education was seen as a way to help individuals and groups in the population understand the nation’s ideals and to give them a chance to better themselves. Politically, education not only informed people about the U.S. system of government but also imparted the nation’s political culture. In addition, it served the needs of certain political parties and helped those running for office to get elected. As we pointed out in chapter 1, public education also has been a response to market failure in that it is an example of a positive externality. Society benefits from a well-educated population, which justifies the government’s involvement and support. The reasons for providing public education that existed years ago are still relevant as government policymakers deal with education policy today.

Traditionally, public education has been in the hands of state and local government. Policymakers at these levels have guarded this responsibility throughout the years and raised concerns whenever the federal government has attempted to interfere in education policy, especially in primary and secondary schools. State governments have the major responsibilities in education policy with respect to curriculum, teacher training and certification, and—to a greater degree than before—funding public schools. And a great deal of education policy remains under local control. Schoolteachers employed by local government comprise the largest category of public workers. There are over thirteen thousand local school boards across the United States, all shaping education policy to some degree within their districts.6.
This is not to say that the federal government has been completely absent from public education, but its involvement is relatively recent, and growing. Congress passed the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA), its first major education legislation, in 1965. That law raised the amount of federal funding for primary and secondary education (N. Thomas 1975). According to the U.S. Department of Education, the federal government provided about 8 percent of all funding for levels K–12 in 2012–2013.7 Multiple agencies within the government are the sources for these funds, and they do not all come from ESEA.8 With federal funding came a variety of

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