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Six theories on why no one seems to give a crap about the new school accountability law

The Every Student Succeeds Act—the federal education law that required all states to define what success looks like for 100,000 public schools and 50 million public school students nationwide–will go into full effect this year. But you’d never know that from asking everyday parents and educators about the accountability law. No one is talking about it. No one is paying attention to what… Read more →

Can we have better — and more diverse — teachers?

Reformers want to “raise the bar” for new teachers and put more Latino and black teachers in the classroom. Can we have better and more diverse teachers? asks Matt Barnum on Chalkbeat. Certification rules and tests disproportionately screen out teachers of color, he writes. In a new report, the Center for American Progress argues that schools can have it all:  “Rigorous recruitment and thoughtful selection processes can achieve… Read more →

It’s time to listen to what Millennials are telling us about education priorities

If you want a peek at where our educational priorities might land in about 10 years, take a look at this poll. Here are a few hot-button findings that jump out from “Education in America: The Views of Millennials:” Millennials support school choice, both charters and vouchers, especially if the vouchers help low-income families afford private school. Millennials think there… Read more →

For students with special needs, social skills are as important as math and reading

Inspired by her ongoing journey to get her son the education she wanted for him, Lia Martin became an advocate for parents of kids with disabilities. Kim McCann Fultz moved from Brooklyn to a small town in rural Ohio in hopes that the new setting would be beneficial to her son Micah’s learning and social life, and to be closer to family.… Read more →

How can I be pro-public school, pro-school-choice, anti-voucher–and still find reasons to cheer the new IL plan?

Now that the state’s school funding plan is the law, the big question is whether the Chicago Teachers Union will challenge it. While the law paves the way for financial stability for Chicago Public Schools, the union signaled a fight around the tax credit scholarship program, a provision added at the 11th hour to garner conservative support. To be honest,… Read more →

Vocational ed: Path to prosperity? Or realization our grads are not prepared for college?

“All throughout high school, they made it sound like going to college was our only option,” says Derrick Roberson, a 17-year-old high school graduate in southern California. Vocational classes were seen as second-class. But he had doubts. “After you go to college, where do you go? It can open doors for you, but not as much as they make it… Read more →

When teachers shill for high-tech companies: Icky, but is it unethical?

I’m all about teachers embracing new technology in their classrooms and sharing their best practices with colleagues. But there’s something unsettling when a teacher gushes about all the high-tech product placements she “embeds” in her “brand.” Now Kayla Delzer, a third-grade teacher in a rural North Dakota district, can gush about her latest score in brand enhancements: This front-page story… Read more →

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