This pdf is the Oxford Foundation “Skunk Words” Designed Value School Document.
“The following is a concept outline to design and implement a prototype “Value School,” a public
school that is designed to maximize the educational performance and value of a public school
through technology and the implementation of new teaching and learning techniques. It is a
value school in the sense that instead of seeking to maximize the funds available per student, the
designers seek to apply concepts familiar in the private sector – getting higher value for less
Because the project is outside the public education system or its consulting industry, the project
is designed as a “skunk works” effort:
Skunk Works is an official alias for Lockheed Martin’s Advanced
Development Programs (ADP), formerly called Lockheed
Advanced Development Projects. Skunk Works is responsible for a
number of famous aircraft designs, including the U-2, the SR-7l
Blackbird, the F-1l7 Nighthawk, and the F-22 Raptor. Currently
its largest officially known project is the F-35 Lightning II, which
will be used in the air forces of several countries. Production is
expected to last for up to four decades.
The designation “skunk works”, or “skuokworks”, is widely used
in business, engineering, and technical fields to describe a group
within an organization given a high degree of autonomy and
unhampered by bureaucracy, tasked with working on
advanced or secret projects.”
Which is interesting, since this is what they said when they got caught:
Behen said he and the other four state employees are mostly working after-hours on the project with Friday evening and Saturday meetings.
“Why are we using private email addresses? Because it’s just easier,” Behen said. “There’s nothing secret or anything about this.”
McLellan said the other participants are justified in using private emails. “Well, they should,” he said. “It’s not a government project.”
“Isn’t a skunk works by definition unorganized, backroom?” he asked rhetorically.
Which is it? You either are a group within an organization tasked with working on a secret project, or you’re an unorganized backroom group. These guys have claimed both.
And in case you are wondering, here’s where the voucher system comes in:
Value School Benefit. The Michigan Education Card could be used for full tuition at
a Michigan Value School that charges less than the per pupil amount for enrollment.
The family of a student enrolled in a Michigan Value School could use the excess
funds for additional education services, e.g., AP courses, music lessons, sport team
fees, remedial services, Michigan Virtual High School classes, etc.
Remember, Republicans aren’t afraid to go to court.