This week, I've looked at what we can learn from the charter movement to scale up promising practices in urban school districts. Today, I'll conclude with the most important piece of the strategic school puzzle: the teacher.


We know that when it comes to funds, it's not just about how much you have, but how well you use it. In this realm, charters have been given the opportunity to innovate: with their money, but also with explicit flexibility to organize people, time, and technology in new ways


This week I'd like to call out three areas not often discussed in even-handed ways in which we can better understand districts' constraints, and all work together to promote "scaled up" solutions: funding, strategic school design, and restructuring the teaching job. In this blog post, I'll tackle funding.


Enjoy the next 4 weeks of guest stars on RHSU: Hawley Miles, E4E, Lewis & Anderson, and McEachin.


The past couple days I've run pieces by PARCC's Jeff Nellhaus and SBAC's Joe Wilhoft that helped illuminate how their consortia are going to address some key challenges when it comes to making sure that the new Common Core tests can carry the load they're being asked to bear. I found the exchange somewhat heartening, after years during which my questions had been genially (and sometimes not so genially) brushed aside. Having read the responses by Jeff and Joe, I have a few additional queries.


A few weeks ago, I asked three questions about how confident we should be that the results of the new, quasi-national, computer-assisted Common Core tests will be valid and reliable enough to support stuff like teacher evaluation and school accountability. Today I'll be publishing a response from SBAC's Joe Wilhoft.


A few weeks ago, I asked three questions about how confident we should be that the results of the new, quasi-national, computer-assisted Common Core tests will be valid and reliable enough to support stuff like teacher evaluation and school accountability. Today I'll be publishing a response from PARCC's Jeff Nellhaus.


On Thursday, Secretary of Education Arne Duncan yanked Washington State's NCLB waiver, forcing the state to again operate under provisions of a law that Duncan has declared "broken."


Showing the taste for power that has led Sen. Lamar Alexander to accuse him of thinking he runs a national school board, yesterday Secretary of Education Arne Duncan yanked Washington state's "waiver" from the No Child Left Behind Act. In his letter, Duncan expressed his disappointment in the failure of Washington state's legislature to heed his instruction "to put in place teacher and principal evaluation and support systems that take into account information on student learning growth based on high-quality college- and career-ready (CCR) State assessments as a significant factor in determining teacher and principal performance levels."


Blogger John Thompson and Gates research honcho Steve Cantrell ultimately had an extended, robust exchange of views. They didn't "solve" anything but I think this kind of honest, civil disagreement makes it a helluva lot easier to think about finding workable ways forward. So, when they offered to share their takes on the whole deal, I was game. Here's what they had to say.


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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