Blog Posts/Multimedia

We’ll Miss You, Michael Gove

The path on which Gove and his predecessors placed English education resembles the path taken by U.S. education reformers.

07/23/2014

The Federal Government Is Not a State, and ESEA Does Not Give Arne Duncan Mandate Authority

Where is the “plain language” of ESEA that gives the Department of Education the authority to mandate statewide teacher-evaluation systems, particularly for states that want waivers on school accountability. Just as with ObamaCare and the question of whether the federal government is a “state,” the administration won’t have a good answer.

07/23/2014

Money-Ed

Across all 28 states in the study, public charter school sectors were more cost effective and/or generated a higher return on investment (ROI) than traditional public schools

07/22/2014

What We’re Watching: OECD Test for Schools

Schools that want to see if they are holding their students to high standards can test their students using an exam given around the globe. A story on PBS Newshour takes a close look at the test.

07/22/2014

Sweden and School Choice

Last week, Slate published a critique of Sweden’s school choice program that managed to be both inaccurate and fallacious.

07/22/2014

Five Thoughts on the New Yorker Cheating Story

Rachel Aviv’s article about a cheating scandal involving teachers at one middle school in Atlanta is very well-written, but the sources of the pressure on Atlanta teachers and principals to improve and the threat behind it are more complex than NCLB alone.

07/21/2014

Why Kids are Hiring Competency- Based Education

An alternative school in Boston offers flexibility in pacing, help when students need it, and the chance to continuously reengage on material even if you didn’t master it the first time around–in all, the flexibility, support, and hope that human beings, and particularly teenagers, crave.

07/21/2014

Glenn Beck’s Common Core Hysteria Doesn’t Help Advance Conservative Education Policy

Screenings of “We Will Not Conform” might channel populist angst on the right against the Common Core, but they do nothing to address the very real concern that inspired the Common Core in the first place — the fact that standards for what kids should know varied wildly across the states — or to propose alternative standards.

07/21/2014

What We’re Watching: Underwater Dreams

Four undocumented teenagers from a high-poverty high school in Phoenix win a national robotics competition in this documentary produced by Jeb Bush, Jr.

07/18/2014

The Future of Test-based Accountability

We may be in a transformative period fueled by a kind of restlessness that nobody is getting accountability right, the achievement problem remains, and ideas are not manifold about what to do next.

07/18/2014

Computers Enable Good Teachers

The power of educational technology does not come from replacing teachers, but from empowering teachers to provide better instruction.

07/17/2014

Former Indiana State Chief Tony Bennett and the Politics of Personal Destruction

Last summer, Tony Bennett resigned the Florida superintendency when slammed with alleged improprieties from his tenure as Indiana state chief. Last week, he was cleared of all but one very minor charge.

07/17/2014

What We’re Listening To: What’s In the Common Core Math Standards?

Jason Zimba, one of the lead authors of the Common Core math standards, talks about what’s in the standards.

07/16/2014

Behind the Headline: Karen Lewis For Chicago Mayor? Union Leader Forms Exploratory Committee

Karen Lewis, the controversial head of the Chicago Teachers Union, has formed an “unofficial exploratory committee” to look into a possible challenge to Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel in next year’s mayoral race.

07/16/2014

Two Charter School Debates: When Philosophical Opposition Masquerades as Policy Commentary

There’s lots of important work out there aimed at improving the way the charter sector works, but it often gets overshadowed by articles that are just thinly veiled attacks on the idea of charter schooling.

07/16/2014

What We’re Watching: Common Core: Realities of the Rollout

Fordham’s Amber Northern talks about Common Core implementation at the EWA’s 67th National Seminar.

07/15/2014

The Splintering School Reform Movement

Different reformers prefer different reforms, and those reforms are colliding. Something has to give. We need to either pause the move to the tougher tests or pause the stakes attached to the teacher evaluations.

07/15/2014

Private Schools Should Learn from Charter Schools Without Adopting their Regulatory Scheme

Do we really want government agencies to oversee and regulate private schools that participate in choice programs?

07/15/2014

Behind the Headline: Charter School Battle Erodes Middle Ground

In Boston, the debate over whether to raise the cap on charter school spending is becoming more and more polarized.

07/15/2014

How Does Teacher Attrition Compare to Other Professions?

Of the college graduates who became teachers, 30 percent left within six years.

07/14/2014

Implementing Common Core: Curriculum Part 2

A look at key curricular decisions that will be encountered as CCSS makes its way through the school system and the potential political controversies that this process may provoke.

07/14/2014

Behind the Headline: How D.C. Got To Be an Education Hot Spot

Richard Whitmire looks at the evolving competition between district schools and charter schools in Washington, D.C. in an op-ed in the Washington Post.

07/14/2014

Whither the NEA?

Perhaps the historic coupling of the NEA and the Democratic Party is loosening a bit.

07/11/2014

Disruptive Innovation And Education

Disrupting our K–12 schools or our public school districts is impossible today because there is no nonconsumption of education in this country, but helping our schools use disruptive innovation to disrupt the classroom—the way they arrange teaching and learning—is possible.

07/11/2014

What We’re Listening To: The Children We Mean to Raise

On EdCast, Richard Weissbourd talks about his new report, which finds that children are more concerned with achievement than with being a good person.

07/11/2014

What We’re Watching: Live Online Speech Therapy

Students in Fowler USD, a school district in California facing financial challenges, can access speech therapy online.

07/10/2014

Teacher Pensions, Recruitment, and Retention

Are state pension plans a recruitment or retention incentive for teachers? It’s complicated, but many of the claims about the value of pensions don’t stand up to scrutiny.

07/09/2014

Design Matters: The Future of School Choice

Policymakers should learn from other states’ experience when designing their own scholarship tax credit laws.

07/09/2014

On School Discipline, Let’s Not Repeat All Our Old Mistakes

President Obama’s policy will have a predictable effect: eliminating suspensions and expulsions as an option for school administrators.

07/09/2014

Breaking Down “The Chartered Course”

The charter school sector has potentially valuable lessons for private school leaders.

07/09/2014

Why Johnny Won’t Learn to Read

We know for a fact that “balanced literacy” has had little effect on closing stubborn achievement gaps. So why is New York City Schools Chancellor Carmen Farina bringing it back?

07/09/2014

The NCES, NIEER, and Spinning Preschool Data

The job of a statistical agency is to provide people with data by which they can judge these things for themselves. On the preschool front, the National Center for Education Statistics has let the country down.

07/08/2014

Vergara, Harris, and the Fate of the Teacher Unions

We’re in a period of profound change in teacher-union leadership, with more combative leaders in ascendance, But what the unions really need are leaders able to craft winning platforms with a new orientation.

07/08/2014

What We’re Watching: Why More States are Backing Off Common Core

Jeffrey Brown of PBS NewsHour talks with Rick Hess and Carmel Martin.

07/08/2014

Behind the Headline: Arne Duncan Unveils 50-State Teacher-Equity Strategy

The Department of Education has released a new plan to ensure that poor and minority students have equal access to effective teachers.

07/07/2014

Cheese, Charter Schools & Promising Developments in Special Ed

Why some of the most competent charters are choosing to become their own LEAs and take full responsibility for special education

07/07/2014

Chester E. Finn, Jr. Honored with Award from National Alliance for Public Charter Schools

One of the intellectual godfathers of the charter movement is inducted into the Charter School Hall of Fame.

07/07/2014

A Missed Opportunity for Common Core

Common Core supporters should be showcasing lessons that represent a sharp break with the skills-driven, all-texts-are-created-equal approach that has come to dominate too many classrooms.

07/03/2014

Lacking Leaders: The Challenges of Principal Recruitment, Selection, and Placement

Principal hiring practices continue to fall short of what is needed, effectively causing needy schools to lose out on leaders with the potential to be great.

07/02/2014
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