Column: Education standards forced into national straightjacket

At a small table at an Indianapolis club some years ago an argument began — more an intense discussion. It was between two powerful personalities: Luke Kenley, the Noblesville businessman who would become chairman of the state senate appropriations committee, and Stephen Moore, an economist and frequent guest of our foundation who a few years later would join the editorial board of The Wall Street Journal.

We had brought the two men together informally that afternoon because it was thought they would have an affinity for fiscal discipline and smaller government. We were half right. The one was a fiscal disciplinarian; the other was dedicated to smaller government. The two positions, though, didn’t mix, especially on the issue of public education.

Kenley had been named Freshman Legislator of the Year. He was beginning to formulate his education policies and surprised some at the table with his support for a plan to distribute state school funds somewhat equally.

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