CHALLENGING LOCAL CONTROL…. Local control of public schools is rarely challenged, in large part because it’s believed to be sacrosanct in the minds of most Americans. The latest CNN poll suggests that might not be true after all.

A new national poll indicates that most Americans would be willing to give up some control of their public schools to the federal government in return for more money from Washington for those schools.

Fifty-six percent of people questioned in a CNN/Opinion Research Corporation survey released Friday say they would like to see more federal money spent on the public schools in their communities, even if it meant increased influence by the federal government over the education policies those schools follow, with 43 percent opposed.

The most support for more government influence over local schools in exchange for more money comes from mothers of children under 18 (72%).

The same poll showed 52% support for increasing the length of the school year (but not the school day), and opinion was split on “merit pay” proposals, with 50% approving of the idea, and 48% disapproving.

These aren’t the results I would have expected.

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Follow Steve on Twitter @stevebenen. Steve Benen is a producer at MSNBC's The Rachel Maddow Show. He was the principal contributor to the Washington Monthly's Political Animal blog from August 2008 until January 2012.