Author

Michael J. Petrilli

Articles

Despite Success in New York City, It’s Time for Charters to Guard Their Flanks

School districts and teachers unions are fighting charters with renewed energy.

SUMMER 2014 / VOL. 14, NO. 3

Coming Soon: ‘Car-Key Kids’

What autonomous automobiles will mean for adolescence

SPRING 2014 / VOL. 14, NO. 2

Equity Trumps Excellence

Among news media, competition less important than achievement gap

FALL 2013 / VOL. 13, NO. 4

Pulling the Parent Trigger

Education Next talks with Ben Austin and Michael J. Petrilli

SUMMER 2013 / VOL. 13, NO. 3

There’s a Better Way to Unlock Parent Power

Forum: Pulling the Parent Trigger

SUMMER 2013 / VOL. 13, NO. 3

Tweet Thine Enemy

How “narrowcast” is the education policy debate?

Spring 2013 / Vol. 13, No. 2

The Newsroom’s View of Education Reform

Surprise! The press paints a distorted picture

SUMMER 2012 / VOL. 12, NO. 3

Obama’s Education Record

Does the reality match the rhetoric?

SPRING 2012 / VOL. 12, NO. 2

All A-Twitter about Education

Improving our schools in 140 characters or less

Fall 2011 / Vol. 11, No. 4

Pyrrhic Victories?

The following essay is part of a forum, written in honor of Education Next’s 10th anniversary, in which the editors assessed the school reform movement’s victories and challenges to see just how successful reform efforts have been. For the other side of the debate, please see A Battle Begun, Not Won by Paul E. Peterson, […]

Spring 2011 / Vol. 11, No. 2

Lights, Camera, Action!

Using video recordings to evaluate teachers

Spring 2011 / Vol. 11, No. 2

All Together Now?

Educating high and low achievers in the same classroom

Winter 2011 / Vol. 11, No. 1

School Reform Hits the Big Screen

Why 2010 is a banner year for the education documentary

Fall 2010 / Vol. 10, No. 4

Bye-Bye Blackboards

Interactive and expensive, whiteboards come to the classroom

Summer 2010 / Vol. 10, No. 3

Charters as Role Models

The charter school movement turns 14

this year, and its behavior, some might say, is “developmentally

appropriate.”

Summer 2005 / Vol. 5, No. 3

Disappearing Ink

What happens when the education reporter goes away?

Fall 2009 / Vol. 9, No. 4

Linky Love, Snark Attacks, and Fierce Debates about Teacher Quality?

A peek inside the education blogosphere

Winter 2009 / Vol. 9, No. 1

Arrested Development

Online training is the norm in other professions. Why not in K–12 education?

Fall 2008 / Vol. 8, No. 4

Opinion Leaders or Laggards?

Newspaper editorialists support charter schools, split on NCLB

Summer 2008 / Vol. 8, No. 3

Wikipedia or Wickedpedia?

Assessing the online encyclopedia’s impact on K–12 education

Spring 2008 / Vol. 8, No. 2

Let’s Talk About It

Talk radio’s take on K–12 education

Winter 2008 / Vol. 8, No. 1

Teacher’s Little Helper

New technologies target teacher performance

Summer 2007 / Vol. 7, No. 3

Testing the Limits of NCLB

Implementation is not the problem

Fall 2007 / Vol. 7, No. 4

The Key to Research Influence

Quality data and sound analysis matter, after all

Spring 2007 / Vol. 7, No. 2

No Business Like Show Business

Hollywood and Hip-Hop Discover Charter Schools

Winter 2007 / Vol. 7, No. 1

Misdirected Energy

Schools get an A in resisting reform.

Winter 2007 / Vol. 7, No. 1

The Cure

Will NCLB’s restructuring wonder drug prove meaningless?

Fall 2006 / Vol. 6, No. 4

A New New Federalism

The case for national standards and tests

Fall 2006 / Vol. 6, No. 4

Blog Posts/Multimedia

A Few Reflections on the Common Core Wars

Monday’s Politico story on the messaging battle over the Common Core has kicked up another round of recriminations, particularly on the Right.

07/31/2014

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

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

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

The Wise Wonks’ Hierarchy of Charter School Quality

In which states and cities are high-quality charter schools thriving, and what policies make the charter sectors in those states so strong?

06/18/2014

New Deal for Teachers; New Will by Managers

Tenure is just one part of a dysfunctional approach to human resource management in U.S. schools that needs a complete overhaul.

06/12/2014

Individual District Schools Don’t Serve All Students, Either

It’s a myth that district schools “serve all comers.” They simply don’t. Nor should they. Every child deserves to have his or her needs met, but not necessarily under the same roof.

05/19/2014

The Mystery that is Twelfth-Grade NAEP

One of the great unanswered questions in American education policy is why the major gains we’ve seen on the Nation’s Report Card in the fourth and eighth grades evaporate once students reach the twelfth grade.

05/09/2014

Common Core: Too Little Change, Not Too Much

Common Core will not lead to a national curriculum. Local control is alive and well, as it should be. But that’s not to say anything goes in the Common Core era or that changes to teaching and learning aren’t needed.

05/06/2014

Why Oklahoma Should Stay the Course with the Common Core

As legislatures wind down their spring sessions nationwide, Oklahoma is one of the few remaining states with an ongoing, unresolved debate over the Common Core State Standards

05/05/2014

‘College and Career Ready’ Sounds Great. But What About the Kids Who Are Neither?

What should we do with these students while they are in high school? What education offerings would benefit them the most?

04/23/2014

The Two Tracks of School Reform

Standards-based reform and school choice are interdependent, maybe even codependent.

04/03/2014

“Kid, I’m Sorry, but You’re Just Not College Material”

Is exactly what we should be telling a lot of high school students.

03/21/2014

The Imperfect “ObamaCore” Analogy

There are vast differences between ObamaCare and the Common Core when it comes to federal involvement.

02/24/2014

The Common Core Sanity Check of the Day: Estimation Is Not a Fuzzy Math Skill

Those who criticize the Common Core standards for asking kids to estimate the answer to a math problem get a few things wrong.

02/17/2014

Lies, Damned Lies, and the Common Core

If you want to understand why supporters of the Common Core are frustrated—OK, exasperated—by some of our opponents’ seemingly unlimited willingness to engage in dishonest debate, consider this latest episode.

02/10/2014

Executive Action I Can Support: Weighted Lotteries for Charter Schools

The U.S. Department of Education issued new guidance for the Public Charter Schools Program that will allow charters to use “weighted lotteries” without forfeiting their chance to receive federal start-up funds.

01/30/2014

Re: Flipping Out

If DCPS wants to have diverse schools among its ranks, it’s going to need some help from public policy. Controlled choice is one way.

01/29/2014

The Problem With ‘Bad Voucher Schools Aren’t a Problem’

Students receiving publicly funded scholarships or vouchers should take state assessments and that the results should be reported publicly.

01/17/2014

Can’t Buy Me Love

The so-called War on Poverty has been fantastically successful at eradicating poverty among the old and devastatingly miserable at eradicating poverty among the young.

01/08/2014

2014: The Year of Universal Proficiency

No, we did not achieve universal proficiency by 2014. But that doesn’t mean that students haven’t benefited from the law and its associated reforms.

01/02/2014

I Refuse to Feel Bad About Letting My Children Watch TV

With winter break upon us, parents face a multitude of decisions. Will we let our kids watch TV? How much? Which shows? Play video games? Which ones? Watch sports?

12/30/2013

Little Learners Need Better Curriculum

Any gains provided by a massive new investment in preschool will quickly fade away if Mayor de Blasio doesn’t also tackle New York City’s mediocre elementary schools.

12/16/2013

SIG’s Downfall: Judge, and Be Judged, by Proficiency Rates

The SIG analysis released by the Department of Education is completely worthless. Looking at changes in proficiency rates tells us virtually nothing about the progress (or lack thereof) of these schools.

12/06/2013

PISA and Occam’s Razor

What’s a better hypothesis for the lackluster math performance of our fifteen-year-olds? Maybe we’re just not very good at teaching math, especially in high school.

12/03/2013

Petrilli Testimony on Common Core in Ohio

This testimony was presented in Ohio by Mike Petrilli, executive vice president of the Thomas B. Fordham Institute, on November 20, 2013.

11/20/2013

Of Course We Want Instructional Change. Don’t You?

The main reason there’s been so little achievement gain over the past few decades arising from the reforms that so many of us have been pressing is precisely because neither curriculum nor instruction much changed.

11/15/2013

How to Fight Poverty–and Win

Someday I’d like to write a book on anti-poverty efforts, and I hope it might have the title above.

11/05/2013

What to Do About Richie Rich

Let’s not pretend that the behavior of rich parents is somehow “bad,” even if it creates an unfortunate outcome (greater inequality).

10/28/2013

What Obamacare, ‘Supplemental Services,’ and Teacher Evaluations Have in Common

It brings me no pleasure to predict that the project to create rigorous teacher evaluations by fiat is likely to fail.

10/23/2013

See You in the Center

There’s a simple reason why education has been in the spotlight for so long: It’s one of the few things upon which the politicians–and the Americans they represent–can agree.

10/21/2013

Rain of Errors

In her new book, Diane Ravitch commits the exact same errors for which she lambastes reformers. She oversells the evidence; she fails to consider likely unintended consequences; she doesn’t think through implementation challenges.

10/18/2013

The Especially Deserving Poor

Our message to young people, especially those growing up in poverty, should be clear: If you’re willing to do the work, we’ll clear your path to the middle class.

10/14/2013

Has the Left Lost Faith in Upward Mobility?

Rather than accept a future of low-skill, low-wage work for our impoverished young people, education reformers aspire to build their “human capital”–their knowledge, skills, capabilities, talents, habits, character–so that the labor market will one day repay their contributions to society with a wage that far exceeds any minimums.

10/07/2013

Self-Sufficient Citizens: Public Education's Job No. 1

Is there anything schools can to do to encourage their students to follow the "success sequence"?

09/30/2013

What If Self-Interest Doesn’t Explain Everything?

A response to Deborah Meier

09/23/2013

If You Send Your Kid to a Failing School, You are a Bad Person

A manifesto in response to Alison Benedikt.

09/04/2013

Cities Are For Strivers

Parents of high-achieving students—whether they be rich or poor, newcomers or old-timers—deserve schools that will challenge their children. If they don’t find them in the city, they will move.

09/04/2013

All or Nothing on Teacher Accountability

Either policymakers need to combine evaluation systems with reforms that make it plausible to fire ineffective employees, or they shouldn’t bother with high stakes at all.

08/30/2013
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