Rosenblatt cited school board structure, saying that some school board members are appointed by the mayor in some cases and not all boards are formed based on public vote.

“Just this fact, that school boards across the country are formed differently, speaks to the vast generalization of this guide,” he said. “You can’t make over-arching suggestions and have them be useful to the general public.”

Rosenblatt also noted that although “business input can be beneficial in the form of funding for school equipment, working with schools for job placement and opportunities, and community engagement, just because businesses may be good at handling their operation doesn’t mean they know anything about school procedure.”

He added: “Promoting school boards to the community is great—that’s just good civics. But it’s this mentality that, just because you went to school when you were younger, you now know how to run a school, that’s detrimental. In my previous life, I worked as an investment banker, but I can tell you: I didn’t know a thing about managing a school budget.

“People not in education tend to overstate their expertise, and it needs to stop,” he continued. “Take Google, for example: They support education, provide technology, offer internships, help fund school initiatives—but they’re not sitting on any school boards.”

For more on Rosenblatt’s position on schools as businesses, read “Why education is not like business” and “Having gone to school doesn’t mean we all can run a school.”

When asked if USCCF believes the ultimate goal of education is to help the U.S. economy by creating qualified workers for businesses, Oldham replied: “The U.S. Chamber Foundation believes our education system is essential to building an informed, thoughtful, and participatory citizenry. It is also vitally important to our members, and to the economic well-being of the country, that we have a pipeline of talent with the skills needed to compete in a 21st-century global economy.”

(Next page: A ‘reform war’ on schools)

Meris Stansbury

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