On Your Bottom Line

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August 31st, 2012
05:44 PM ET

Can Mitt Romney fix our education system?

Former Education Secretary Bill Bennett tells Christine Romans why throwing more money at education won't fix our schools, but a little competition might.

Filed under: Educating America • Your Bottom Line
August 31st, 2012
05:39 PM ET

National debt: Who's to blame?

Pres. Obama racked up nearly $6T in debt his first term. Republicans say that's unforgivable, but they won't tell you how they helped run up the clock.

August 31st, 2012
05:28 PM ET

Arne Duncan: Education reform investments

When it comes to education, Governor Romney and President Obama agree on more than either side will admit.

They both want more charter schools. They both want teacher compensation tied to performance. And they both supported extending low interest rates on Stafford loans that help pay for college.

Where they disagree is on the role of the federal government. Mitt Romney praises some aspects of the Obama administration's Race to the Top program, but he says he would give more control to state and local governments.

The federal government pays for just 12.5% of all elementary and secondary education, and conservatives say the federal government imposes sweeping mandates but leaves others to pay the bill.

In April, Mitt Romney said that if he becomes president, the department of education will be "consolidated with another agency" or will be "a heck of a lot smaller".


So what would change under a President Romney? And how does Arne Duncan plan to fix the education system? Watch the video to find out!

Filed under: Educating America • Your Bottom Line
August 31st, 2012
04:33 PM ET

This weekend on Your Bottom Line

President Obama has racked up nearly $6 trillion in debt in his first term, pushing the national debt up to nearly $16 trillion. Republicans say that’s unforgiveable – but they won’t tell you how they helped run up the clock.

Plus - President Obama is attacking Mitt Romney for comments he made about class size but Mitt Romney’s comments sound remarkably like something President Obama’s own education secretary said two years ago. Christine asks Arne Duncan whether he stands by what he said.

Then - the U.S. is the world’s biggest economy and the leading superpower but it won’t stay that way if the quality of a child’s education depends on his or her zip code. Arne Duncan tells Christine Romans how he plans to reform America’s schools.

Finally - Mitt Romney’s education plan focuses on school choice; that means handing out vouchers so families can choose where their children go to school. But only around 10% of students get their education from private schools. Christine asks President Reagan's education secretary what a Romney presidency would mean for America's public schools.

Your Bottom Line airs on CNN Saturday at 9:30a ET

August 28th, 2012
05:57 PM ET

The faces of Medicare

The real Medicare experts aren’t politicians. They’re the seniors who depend on it every day. Christine Romans reports.

August 25th, 2012
09:04 AM ET

This week on Your Bottom Line

48 million people depend on it. Workers are taxed to pay for it. Politicians can’t stop talking about it. We'll go behind the numbers and politics of Medicare and talk to the people who really need it.

Later: 20 years of wealth – erased. That's the story of America's middle class. They have just lived through, "worst decade in modern history". They earn less, they pay more and they are the golden egg in the quest for the White House. You may be surprised to find out who they overwhelmingly blame for their problems, and how they feel about their future.

Your Bottom Line with Christine Romans airs every Saturday at 9:30am ET

August 24th, 2012
04:57 PM ET

The future of Medicare?

Voters' feelings towards Medicare will influence who becomes the next president. Dean Baker and Stephen Moore say the program will change no matter who wins.

August 24th, 2012
04:56 PM ET

What is the biggest problem with Medicare?

Stephen Moore and Dean Baker have ideological differences in regards to Medicare. Christine Romans moderates a discussion about health care costs.

August 24th, 2012
03:37 PM ET

A failure to educate

Education is vital for America's economic security, but American high school students aren't ready for college or careers.

A new report this week found 28% of high school graduates who took the ACT didn't meet college readiness benchmarks in English, Reading, Math or Science. Just 25% met the benchmarks in all four subjects. That's a slight improvement from four years ago, when just 22% of students met all four benchmarks. The ACT report also notes that student scores in Math and Science have improved, but the numbers are still nowhere close to where they should be.

U.S. businesses are feeling the effects. Even with 12.8 million Americans looking for a job, industry leaders say they can't find workers with the right skills. Businesses are importing foreign workers - and they would import even more if the U.S. government would let them. According to data from the Brookings Institution, U.S. companies applied for an average of 294,108 H-1B visas between 2010 and 2011. The U.S. government caps the number of available visas at 85,000 each year (exceptions apply for educational and non-profit institutions).

Survey of School Administrators

– Increased class sizes: 54%
– Eliminated summer school programs: 22%
– Reduced non-academic programs: 35%
Source: American Association of School Administrators

While other countries are busy producing engineers and doctors, the U.S. is partying. This week, The Princeton Review released its annual ranking of the top party schools. Another survey found that American college students who binge drink are happier than those who don't!

At least those kids are in college! What are we doing to get everyone else there?

We already know that 312,700 local school jobs have been lost in the last 3 years. More than half of school administrators say class sizes are getting bigger. They are cutting back summer school and non-academic programs.

Don't miss Your Bottom Line next week (September 1st at 9:30a ET). Christine will sit down with Secretary of Education Arne Duncan to find out how he plans to fix America's school system.

Filed under: Educating America
August 17th, 2012
05:42 PM ET

Solving the financial crisis: A game of chess

Elected officials aren't dealing with long-term issues facing the U.S. Ken Rogoff explains possible solutions using chess.

Filed under: Your Bottom Line
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