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High school kids in a suburb of Denver took to the streets last week, forcing their elected school board to reconsider rules advocated by the Republican Party. The target was Advanced Placement tests supposedly designed to challenge creative thinking, but denounced by the GOP as “negative” and “unpatriotic.” Public education is a hot political topic: on the Right, it’s the founding fathers and free enterprise; on the Left, it’s civil rights and respect for gays and lesbians. We’ll hear about street protests in Colorado, textbooks in Texas and what’s at stake for America’s children.

Also, the head of the Secret Service undergoes questioning following last month's White House break-in. Plus: Afghanistan’s political frenemies and America’s longest war.

Banner Image Credit: The Unquiet Library

Secret Service Director Faces Questions About White House Security Breaches 6 MIN, 14 SEC

After reports of White House intruders, the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee today demanded to know if the President and his family are safe. They grilled Julia Pierson, the head of the Secret Service.

Zeke Miller is politics reporter for Time magazine.

Zeke Miller, Time magazine (@ZekeJMiller)

Partisan Politics and Public Education 35 MIN, 19 SEC

More than 1,000 kids from a dozen high schools joined teachers and parents last week on the streets of Jefferson County, a large and politically important suburban area outside Denver. As a result, the County’s elected school board may be re-thinking plans for Advance Placement in American history.

Eric Gorski, Denver Post (@egorski)
Jim Earley, resident of Westminster, Colorado (@SupportJeffKids)
Jane Robbins, American Principles Project (@approject)
Fritz Fischer, University of Northern Colorado (@UNCo_edu)
Stephanie Simon, Politico (@StephanieSimon_)

US Combat Presence and Power Sharing in Afghanistan 8 MIN, 4 SEC

Afghanistan’s former president, Hamid Karzai, frustrated President Obama by refusing to allow US troops to stay in that country. Today, a new government—hammered together after a hotly contested election—signed the deal. The diplomatic nightmare is over but America’s longest war is not.

Political rivals Ashraf Ghani and Abdullah Abdullah are now, respectively, President and Chief Executive of Afghanistan. Their first example of power sharing: today’s televised ceremony from the presidential palace, where they both oversaw a bilateral security agreement with the US.

Omar Samad is Afghanistan’s former Ambassador to France and Canada, now a senior fellow at the New America Foundation.

Omar Samad, Silk Road Consulting / New America Foundation (@OmSamad)

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