Last updated on: 7/6/2012 | Author:

Margaret Spellings Biography

US Secretary of Education from 2005-2009
Pro to the question "Do Standardized Tests Improve Education in America?"

“Testing has been a valuable part of the educational process since the days of Socrates. There is nothing new or scary about it. It lets teachers and parents know how kids are doing and lets students see the rewards of hard work.

That’s why assessments are part of the No Child Left Behind Act. The law’s emphasis on high standards and accountability has led to a sharp focus on results.

Students are no longer overlooked and shuffled from grade to grade, whether they have learned the material or not. The achievement gap between rich and poor and black and white is no longer treated as a sad fact of life, but rather as a problem to be solved. As President Bush likes to say, what gets measured gets done.”

“Is Standardized Testing the Correct Answer? YES,” Atlanta Journal-Constitution (archived at, Oct. 14, 2005

Involvement and Affiliations:
  • President and CEO, Margaret Spellings and Company
  • Senior Advisor, President of the US Forum for Policy Innovation, US Chamber of Commerce
  • Former Volunteer Advisor to former Governor of Massachusetts Mitt Romney’s 2012 US presidential campaign
  • US Secretary of Education, 2005-2009
  • White House Domestic Policy Advisor, 2001-2005
  • Former Senior Advisor to Texas Governor George W. Bush
  • Political Director, George W. Bush’s Texas gubernatorial campaign, 1994
  • Former Associate Executive Director of the Texas Association of School Boards
  • Board Member, Capital Group Companies American Funds
  • Board Member, ConnectEDU
  • Board Member, America’s Promise Alliance
  • Board Member, Broad Center for the Management of School Systems
  • Member, Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses Advisory Council
  • Former Member, Bertelsmann AG Education Advisory Board
  • Former Board Member, The Education Equality Project
  • BA, Political Science, University of Houston, 1979
  • The New York Times reported (“Vouchers Unspoken, Romney Hails School Choice” by Trip Gabriel, June 11, 2012) that Ms. Spellings was an informal advisor to 2012 US presidential candidate Mitt Romney but withdrew “once the candidate rejected strong federal accountability measures.”
  • Member, Aspen Institute Commission to Reform the Federal Appointments Process
  • Board Member, Special Olympics
  • Born in Michigan on Nov. 30, 1957
Quoted in:
Pro & Con Quotes: Do Standardized Tests Improve Education in America?