November 2007 Archives

Everyone talks about the offshore online tutoring option has impacted the tutoring business in the US. The offshore implications are equally interesting.

New York City Public Schools' Teacher Performance Unit, made up of five lawyers... will help principals prepare cases to fire tenured teachers who fail repeatedly to raise student test scores and are also found lacking during principals’ observations. I'm licensed to practice law in the District of Columbia, and would gladly put my money where my mouth has been if DC were to follow New York's example.

With the restructuring announcement of November 28, I can’t see any possibility of DC Mayor Fenty or Chancellor Rhee delivering a meaningful short term win in the one area that truly matters – student and school performance.

CEO/CFO teams give a 20 minute PowerPoint presentation on their firm and its finances. Each of these “dog and pony shows” is followed by a few minutes of questions from the audience. Here’s what I learned from the Signal Hill session of November 27.

Districts interested in pursuing the Smaller Learning Communities approach to high school reform will need school improvement providers as partners.

With a growing appreciation of school violence and disasters, emergency planning will only become more important. Eventually every district and school will have some kind of plan requiring some kind of review.

If you read, you have an interest in What Work Clearinghouse priorities, and I hope you'll let it know how you think they should be spending the taxpayers' money.

Emily Murphy, C. Blohm & Associates, Inc. An online newsroom is a separate page located on a company’s website. The newsroom is designed to communicate information to reporters and journalists, and serves as a valuable resource for anyone seeking company information. In this Web 2.0 age, an online newsroom facilitates two-way communication by providing a business with the means to exchange information with journalists, customers and other key stakeholders. Having the right information on your website can make or break your media coverage. A recent survey found that three of five journalists said information found on a website influences ...

Without a charter school law, Washington has no place for "bricks and mortar" school management organizations, but it appears to be fertile ground for a virtual variant online.

Can a prospective "edtech" buyer rely on the Software and Information Industry Association's (SIIA) CODiE award as an objective indicator that a program will improve student performance? The short answer is “no.” That is a problem for the whole school improvement industry.

Congress has helped Head Start opened the door to quality for-profits. It’s time to walk through.

Watching Rhee over the last several months remind me of nothing so much watching a dictator seize the reins of power. Quo vadis? Where can this lead?

We've reached a point in public education where the informed taxpayer and the generalist elected official can't rely on data and analysis ostensibly provided to shed light on important policy problems.

The vast bulk of k-12 budgets are essentially fixed, most of the discretionary resources available to improve schools relate to the purchase of products, services and programs. If we can't spend them strategically, as the result of decisions based on analysis rather than acquaintance, how do we expect to raise student performance.

Every year media representatives attend a select number of education trade shows. Companies can capitalize on this opportunity by arranging “show floor meetings” with attendees.

If we expect to improve the public school districts, we have to move away from the image of a Superintendent or Chancellor as the man or woman on a white horse. Michelle Rhee is no silver bullet, although that’s precisely the implication of giving her virtually unlimited power to hire and fire government staff and pick and chose her own school contractors.

Plato, Renaissance and Scientific Learning aren’t Frank Lucas and won’t be. They can’t beat the publishers at their own game. If companies like these are to succeed as investments, the changes made to the rules in state and federal legislation need to be completed in regulation and enforcement. No one is going to do it, if these companies don't themselves.

Free Equity Capital For Product Development...

I’ve yet to see such an opportunity for “action research,” tying theory to practical operations and bringing costs into the equation. This is a classic “systems analysis.”

There's a whole lot of talk in education about accountability - generally coming from the top down and more broadly from the elite down. I'm all for accountability, but if and only if it runs both ways.

Even in business, for every Exxon that tries to get out of responsibility for its tanker's oil spill in Prince William Sound, there's a Johnson&Johnson/McNeil that embraces its accountability for a third party's tampering with Tylenol. K-12 buyers take note - it's not about tax status. You'll need to look behind that label to assess the quality and commitment of your business partners

Journalists are a key audience for most organizations because they are “gatekeepers” of information, charged with deciding what news is worthy of dissemination.

You don't have to agree with the point of view expressed in Latest Evidence to leave the site knowing more about k-12 program evaluation than when when you arrived.

The more the publishers believe Wireless Generation is a viable initial public offering opportunity, the more they will be willing to pay to avoid it.

School improvement providers that can ally with moderate Democrats need a presence in Washington if they hope to preserve and expand the industry.

"It's just stupid and mean and unnecessary," said Marc Dean Millot, the editor of School Improvement Industry Weekly, based in Alexandria, Va., who believes Rhee is just deepening the resistance. "These guys are going to stand by, watch her screw up and be glad to help her pack.

In the future, if you think I've made an error, please use the comment form. You are doing me a favor.

If you sell anything in virtual learning, now is the time to seek and take on as much business as possible. If you don’t, you should be thinking about how to partner with those that do.

When you've dug yourself into a hole, the first thing to do is stop digging. So, my sincere apologies to the eduwonk.

The school improvement industry has billions of dollars of revenue at stake. Relying on the usual suspects for warning is another way of saying you get what you pay for. It's time to start putting some resources behind an industry capacity for indications and warning.

Will Russo turn his scathing wit on Scholastic, say only good things about his sponsor, or say nothing at all? K-12 trade print publications have tended towards the second two. I expect the same from their blogs. (Uncompensated) unaligned bloggers' value-add/competitive advantage has been independence. As the first professional k-12 blogger to choose free agency in our market, Russo has a special responsibility to stay on the straight and narrow.

Until the movement is able to align school founders and foundation finance with an operationally oriented leadership representative of most charter schools, charters will remain an idea for the future rather than the present.

The Internet has altered the communications landscape for most information industries, including Public Relations, and the press release has evolved along with the industry.

Like school districts, military commands are large organization. And they look like structures for top-down management. But political scientists call public education a "loosely coupled system" for a reason....


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