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Frontline Research & Learning Institute Explores School Choice in Second Issue of The Line

​Frontline Hosts Civil Discourse Dinner for Nation’s Education Leaders to Exchange Ideas and Insight on This Divisive Issue.


MALVERN, PENNSYLVANIA – October 18, 2017 – The Frontline Research & Learning Institute released the second print issue of The Line, a publication dedicated to encouraging civil discourse among K-12 education leaders, today at the Council of Great City Schools (CGCS) conference in Cleveland, Ohio. The issue focuses on answering the question, “Can we have choice and strong public schools?"

“It’s hard to think of any issue in public education as polarizing and emotionally charged in the last quarter of a century,” said John Deasy, editor-in-chief of The Line. “The center of gravity for finance, politics, opportunity, youth and family rights all converge on this issue. I am proud that the second publication of The Line explores choice from a multitude of perspectives with the intent of creating dialogue and, ultimately, driving action and bettering outcomes for students.” 

To underscore the purpose of The Line, the Institute will hold a release event during CGCS featuring a panel discussion on school choice with Dr. Lewis Ferebee, superintendent, Indianapolis Public Schools; Dr. Barbara Jenkins, superintendent, Orange County, Florida Public Schools; and Dr. Neal McCluskey, director of the Center for Educational Freedom at the CATO Institute. 

Following the panel, The Line will host a Civil Discourse Dinner to engage attendees in candid conversation about choice. This will be the second in a series of dinners that provide an opportunity for participants to engage in a facilitated conversation around a table of individuals with diverse backgrounds and differing perspectives. The inaugural dinner, hosted by John Deasy and Paul Toner, executive director of Teach Plus Massachusetts, was held in August at Boston’s Old State House.  

This new issue of The Line considers whether more choices translate to better choices. It asks if we can put aside our own biases to objectively look at what the research says. Representing a full spectrum of choice perspectives, this issue features interviews and contributions from former Governor of Florida Jeb Bush; Brevard County Schools, Florida Superintendent Desmond Blackburn; 2017 National Teacher of the Year Sydney Chaffee; KIPP CEO Richard Barth and more leaders in education. 

Additionally, a case study highlights two districts that demonstrate how data-driven recruitment and hiring strategies can curb the teacher shortage created by choice and other issues. All print content also may be found on The Line’s interactive website,, providing readers with the chance to engage in civil discourse online through annotated response and commentary. A response to the issue from Catherine Brown, vice president of education policy at the Center for American Progress will also be featured on the site.

“We need to bring the conversation about choice back to the students and what’s in their best interest.” said Tim Clifford, President and CEO, Frontline Education. “That begins with talking about choice and dispelling the notion that those who disagree with us lack passion about issues of access and equity.”


About the Frontline Research & Learning Institute and The Line: 

The Frontline Research & Learning Institute is a division of Frontline Education, an integrated insights partner providing our nation’s school districts with the leading human capital management based platform and solutions for K-12 education. The mission of the Institute is to provide data-driven research, resources and observations to support and advance the education community. The research is driven by the vast amount of data derived from solutions that Frontline provides to more than 12,000 educational organizations, representing over 80,000 schools and more than 60 percent of the nation’s school districts. 

To request a print edition and join the conversation, visit or follow The Line on Twitter @TheLineK12

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Media Contact

Andrea Fitzpatrick
The Line Issue 2 - On School Choice

Where Do You Stand On School Choice