Thomas J. Kane

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    Author Bio:
    Thomas Kane is Professor of Education and Economics at the Harvard Graduate School of Education, faculty director of the Center for Education Policy Research, and Deputy Director within the U.S. education team at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. His work has influenced how we think about a range of education policies: test score volatility and the design of school accountability systems, teacher recruitment and retention, financial aid for college, race-conscious college admissions and the economic payoff of a community college education. From 1995 to 1996, Kane served as the senior staff economist for labor, education, and welfare policy issues within President Clinton's Council of Economic Advisers. From 1991 through 2000, he was a faculty member at the Kennedy School of Government. Kane has also been a professor of public policy at UCLA and has held visiting fellowships at the Brookings Institution and the Hoover Institution at Stanford University.


Capturing the Dimensions of Effective Teaching

Student achievement gains, student surveys, and classroom observations

FALL 2012 / VOL. 12, NO. 4

Evaluating Teacher Effectiveness

Can classroom observations identify practices that raise achievement?

Summer 2011 / Vol. 11, No. 3

Photo Finish

Teacher Certification Doesn’t Guarantee a Winner

Winter 2007 / Vol. 7, No. 1

Randomly Accountable

Failing to account for natural fluctuations in test scores could undermine the very idea of holding schools accountable for their efforts – or lack thereof

Spring 2002 / Vol. 2, No. 1

Blog Posts/Multimedia

Using Video to Make Classroom Observations More Fair, More Helpful, and Less Burdensome

The use of teacher-collected video in classroom observations did seem to improve the classroom observation process.


The Next Phase Of Teacher Evaluation Reform: It’s Up To You, New York, New York!

Students will not achieve at higher levels until teachers teach at higher levels—and that’s simply not going to happen without quality feedback and evaluation.


Frustrated With the Pace of Progress in Education? Invest in Better Evidence

The primary obstacle to faster progress in U.S. education reform is the infrastructure we never built for identifying what works.


To Empower State and Local Leaders, ESEA Reauthorization Should Include Competitive Grants

Competitive grant programs do not weaken local leadership. They strengthen local leadership much more effectively than block grants do.


Do Value-Added Estimates Identify Causal Effects of Teachers and Schools?

There is now substantial evidence that value-added estimates capture important information about the causal effects of teachers and schools


Never Diet Without a Bathroom Scale and Mirror: The Case for Combining Teacher Evaluation and the Common Core

Schools should seize this window of transition—when it is safest for teachers to ask for help (and for instructional leaders to offer it)—to completely reinvent the teacher evaluation process.


Shooting Bottle Rockets at the Moon: Overcoming the Legacy of Incremental Education Reform

When we fail to right-size our reform efforts, we breed a sense of futility among teachers, parents and policymakers.


A Flexner Report on Teacher Preparation

A modern-day Flexner report should focus on finding a more effective model of teacher training.


Why Do State and Local School Agencies Underinvest in Evidence?

State and local leaders bear a responsibility to study the consequences of their decisions. We will make much faster progress when they do.


An Urgent Need for Short-Cycle Clinical Trials in Education

Most consequential decisions are made by district and state leaders, yet these leaders lack the infrastructure to learn quickly what’s working and what’s not.


Presumed Averageness: The Mis- Application of Classical Hypothesis Testing in Education

Given a choice, decision-makers would do well to choose the option with the better odds of success, even when those differences are not “statistically significant.”


Climate Change and Value-Added: New Evidence Requires New Thinking

It is increasingly hard to sustain the argument that test-based measures have no role to play in teacher evaluations.


The Year of the Asterisk? California’s Testing Proposal Subverts Test-Based Accountability

As states plan for new Common-Core-aligned student assessments in the spring of 2015, policymakers are struggling to transition their testing and accountability programs.

Sponsored Results

The Hoover Institution at Stanford University - Ideas Defining a Free Society

Harvard Kennedy School Program on Educational Policy and Governance

Thomas Fordham Institute - Advancing Educational Excellence and Education Reform