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State boards of education should adopt performance-based assessments of textbooks and other learning materials.

State boards of education should either abandon textbook adoption criteria entirely–and leave purchasing decisions to individual schools–or adopt new criteria that apply equally well to all learning media and that speak to skills outcomes rather than topic coverage. Substituting proof that the product improves individual learning outcomes—rather simply covering a long checklist of topics—would stimulate both textbooks and new media to be the best learning tools they can be.