Democratic gubernatorial candidate Frank Caprio will step up his attack on independent Lincoln Chafee's approach to education reform at a press conference outside Hope High School in Providence at 1:15 this afternoon.
Chafee said at a recent public forum that he is "wary" of the Race to the Top federal grant program, which pushes a market-based vision of education reform - think charter schools and tougher teacher evaluations. Rhode Island's Education Commissioner Deborah Gist has embraced the initiative and become a symbol of the new push to improve the schools.
Expect Caprio to offer high praise for Gist, who has emerged as something of a media darling in the state.
Chafee rightly points out that the record on charter schools is mixed - but making that argument in the heat of the campaign will be difficult. Chafee, though, does not shy away from the tough arguments.