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Introducing Your Special Guest Stars: AAE, Goldhaber, Kraft, & Charbonneau

Hidy all. I'm going to take a blog break in August as I finish up an extended National Affairs piece on Obama and education, take a bit of down time, and dig into a few new projects. While I'm away, I'll be leaving you in some exceptionally capable hands.

First up, next week will be a tag-team effort among staff and members at the Association of American Educators. As readers probably know, AAE is a professional association for educators and the nation's largest non-union teachers' association. AAE contributors will be sharing some thoughts on the growth of the non-union teacher movement and what it's like to be a cage-buster working to reform the profession.

The following week, we'll hear from an old friend, Dan Goldhaber, director of CALDER at the American Institutes for Research and of the Center for Education Data & Research at the University of Washington. Dan, of course, has a dazzling track record of work on educational productivity, teacher quality, and teacher labor markets in a slew of academic journals and popular outlets. He'll be blogging (with some colleagues) about when research runs counter to the conventional wisdom about teachers and teacher labor markets.

The week of August 17 we'll be joined by Matt Kraft, a whip-smart assistant professor of education at Brown. Matt studies all things related to teachers: selection, hiring, coaching, evaluation, turnover, layoffs, teacher-parent communication . . . you get the idea. Before entering academe, Matt taught in Oakland and at Berkeley High School in California, where he led a program for at-risk students and taught integrated humanities. His current research, which I find incredibly interesting, focuses on how teachers affect student skills and competencies that aren't measured by standardized tests.  

Finally, the week of August 24, cage-buster extraordinaire Jeff Charbonneau will take the reins. Jeff teaches science at Zillah High School in Zillah, Washington. The US National Teacher of the Year in 2013 and a finalist for this year's Global Teacher Prize, Jeff is a fount of intriguing insights and practical wisdom. He'll be writing about what he sees as the largest obstacles to moving education forward and, refreshingly, offering a plan on how to overcome them.

And I'll be back in a few weeks. Meanwhile, enjoy.

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