Every time I set out to talk about Cage-Busting Leadership, I inevitably encounter four of the verbal tics that can make edu-discussions so tedious and frustrating.

We have done a poor job of equipping leaders to address these challenges; squeeze the most value out of scarce funds; and to make the fullest use of twenty-first-century talent, tools, and technology. Cage-Busting Leadership is one modest attempt to help us do better.

ED's Office of Civil Rights (OCR) went way the hell over the rainbow in a well-meaning but bizarre effort to create vast new vistas of obligation and (inevitably) litigation.

In "Counting on Character," the terrific Joanne Jacobs takes a close look at National Heritage Academies (NHA) and its approach to character and citizenship education.

The AEI Program on American Citizenship just published an intriguing piece titled They've just published an intriguing piece titled "Charter schools as nation builders" by my colleagues Daniel Lautzenheiser and Andrew Kelly, looking at Harlem's Democracy Prep charter network and sketching out its unique approach to civic education.

The decade or more from, say, 1992 to 2005, saw a dearth of smart attention to the kinds of questions that political scientists can most effectively address.

It's vital, in responding to a tragedy that may strike a single one of our 100,000 schools perhaps twice a decade, that we maintain a sense of proportion when devising broad new directives for school practices, spending, or how educators use their time.

When we calibrate all of our other instruments based on their ability to predict value-added gains on reading and math assessments, we build our entire edifice of teacher quality on what strikes me as a narrow and potentially rickety foundation.

Clark County's "Open Book" portal makes it easy for parents, taxpayers, journalists, and critics to view the district's revenue and expenses.

Curtsey of the big-brained Todd Grindal at Harvard Graduate School of Education, we're stoked to offer RHSU readers two new tools that make it possible to tinker with the Edu-Scholar rankings in cool new ways.

The opinions expressed in Rick Hess Straight Up are strictly those of the author(s) and do not reflect the opinions or endorsement of Editorial Projects in Education, or any of its publications.

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