Measuring Poverty .Howard Glennerster outlines proposals to reform the official poverty line in the US - unchanged for the last 25 years. Different approaches - such as a poverty line based upon a budget standard (the ability to buy a basket of goods), or one based on a proportion of average income are discussed. He proposes an annual US Poverty Report based upon a range of poverty indicators. "US Poverty Studies and Poverty Measurement: The past 25 Years" is published by the Centre for the Analysis of Social Exclusion. For an excellent attempt to draw up an authoritative annual poverty report in the UK see the "Monitoring Poverty and Social Exclusion" series for 1998, 1999 and 2000 from the New Policy Institute.
By New Policy Institute ,US and UK.
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Privatizing Social Security .Critics of plans to privatize Social Security (pensions) in the US and turn them into individual accounts invested in the stock market have five main objections. First, that there is no crisis in the funding of social security. Second, that the reform would merely involve shifting retirement investments from the bonds currently held by the Social Security Trust Fund to stocks held in personal accounts, which would not produce any general economic benefits and could not sustain higher benefits across the board. Third, that personal accounts would imply benefit cuts for many retired people. Fourth, that survivors' and disability benefits would also be threatened. And finally, that the guarantee offered by the government is exchanged for the risk of the stock market. The Failed Critique of Personal Accounts by Peter Ferrara rebuts and responds to each of these arguments in turn. This paper should be read alongside materials from the Cato Institute's Social Security websitePublished by the Cato Institute.
By Cato Institute ,US.
School Art: What's in it? Exploring Visual Arts in Secondary Schools. Based on interviews with 54 teachers in 18 schools and their descriptions of 64 art modules, this book explores the content of the secondary school art curriculum and why it looks the way it does. Commissioned by Arts Council England in association with Tate, it examines the range of approaches taken by different teachers and schools and asks whether there is a place for contemporary art practice. Its findings, and the questions that they raise, will be of interest to anyone teaching art, those training to do so, artists, gallery educators and people interested in the future of visual culture in this country. By Dick Downing and Ruth Watson.
Meeting the Need: A New Architecture for Canada's Student Financial Aid System. To replace the current hodgepodge of programs the authors propose a single and coherent system that would "deliver the full amount of aid required to those who need it in an efficient, effective, and nonwasteful manner." By Ross Finnie, Alex Usher and Hans Vossensteyn.
By Institute for Research on Public Policy, Canada.