Senator Barack Obama, responding in part to new competition for the women's vote from Republican vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin, outlined more details of his plan to overhaul education yesterday, pledging to double federal funding for public charter schools, spend $500 million to upgrade school technology, and award merit pay for teachers, including higher salaries for math and science instructors, reports the Boston Globe. Speaking at Stebbins High School near Dayton, Ohio, Obama offered a dismal picture of the state of American education, warning that U.S. students are lagging behind Asian counterparts in advanced engineering degrees, that jobs are going


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