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A Private School in Washington, D.C. Appeals to Conservative Students & Their Families

the heights private school for boysImagine starting your school day off in a blazer, standing up in class with your classmates, and saying the Hail Mary. After praying, you can finally take off your jacket, and then it’s time for some light reading from a 14th-century English romance book, Sir Gawain and the Green Knight. It sounds a little strange to me, but for the boys who attend the Heights School in Washington, D.C., this is a completely normal day.

The Heights School is a conservative private school for boys in grades 3-12 in the nation’s capital that is affiliated with Opus Dei, a sect of the Catholic Church. It was founded in 1969 and has quickly become very popular among conservative Catholics, like politician Rick Santorum, who sent two of his sons to the school.

“I’ve got just one job as a dad,” said Pat Kilner, a father of nine who has sent his four sons to the Heights School. “And that’s to get these kids, who are gifts to me, to heaven, so they can be in the eternal presence of the Lord. And none of my kids has left the church.”

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Barack Obama Voted One of Nation’s Best Presidents

barack-obamaDespite what the political pundits, disgruntled Democrats and enraged Republicans may say about President Barack Obama, according to 238 of the nation’s foremost scholars, he is one of the country’s best presidents – ever.

The analysis was conducted by Siena College Research Institute Poll. The scholars ranked the presidents on personal attributes such as integrity, intelligence, leadership and willingness to take risks as well as things they have little control over, like luck.

The aggregate data once again rated Franklin Delano Roosevelt as the best president ever and Obama ranked 15th. Obama earned high marks for intelligence, ability to communicate and imagination, but his score was hindered by his lack of experience and family background.

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Obama Making Affordable College Education a Priority

Here’s what’s perhaps most unusual about President Obama‘s big budget proposals for higher education: That he’s thinking about higher education at all.

Delineated in a handful of brash proposals Thursday, Obama’s plan to make college more affordable and within reach of more students represents a break from the approach that President Bush took — he focused much of his energy from Day 1 on improving K-12 education, most notably with his signature No Child Left Behind law.

“It was unusual for President Bush to make higher education a significant part of his budget,” said Terry Hartle of the American Council on Education, a lobbying group for college presidents. “President Obama has made this a very substantial part of his first budget.”

See this story at USA Today.



College Students Were Actively Involved in 2004 Presidential Election, Says Survey

College students aren’t always taken as seriously by politicians as they should be.  After all, as the old (and increasingly outdated) logic goes, college students don’t vote as much as other groups (like elderly people), so why pay lots of attention to the issues that matter to them?

Well, college students are voting more than they used to, and overall, they are increasingly interested in and involved in the political process.  In fact, here’s a Fact Sheet about student political participation in the 2004 election that was compiled by CIRCLE, the Center for Information & Research on Civil Learning & Engagement.  According to to a survey of students by CIRCLE:

  • More than 85 percent of students followed the 2004 campaign at least somewhat closely.
  • About 43 percent of students followed the campaign very closely.
  • Nearly 90 percent of students were registered to vote.
  • About 77 percent of all students voted — compared to a voter turnout of only 42 percent nationwide among voters 18-24.
  • Students didn’t just vote in the highly publicized presidential and Senatorial races. Instead, almost 80 percent of the students who voted cast a vote for other candidates as well.
  • Nearly three-quarters of students said that they had conversations about the election at least once a week.  A third of students had conversations about the elections almost every day.

So who did students vote for?  The students in this survey preferred John Kerry, who earned 55 percent of their votes to George Bush’s 41 percent (a trend that echoed the national youth vote as a whole).  Support for Kerry was the highest among students with social science and humanities majors, while support for Bush was the highest among science and business majors.

So will these trends continue with the 2008 election?  Let’s hope so.  Get out and vote, students!





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