It is clear that the policy landscape (e.g., the ESEA waivers) has quickly moved past asking "Should we hold teachers accountable?" to "How should we hold teachers and school accountable?" Yet, it appears that all too often we do not start with the two most important questions: What qualities and practices characterize the ideal teacher? What are the skills and knowledge we want students to obtain from our schools?
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May 27, 2014
May 23, 2014
ReSchool Colorado is a multi-year effort to design a new, public, state education system where learning is reimagined and students are equipped to thrive in a rapidly changing world.
May 21, 2014
If one cannot tweak the current K-12 education system (by adding more mandates), then you must consider re-designing it. And this is the bold work we're embarking upon: to rethink the key drivers and to create a new and parallel space for students, families, and educators to do their work. We know this will not be a perfect utopia, but we firmly believe that creating student-centered, welcoming, and dynamic learning environments, through a fundamental re-design of the system, is the only way to create the quality we seek in a scalable way.
May 19, 2014
Why Gus the Truck, a 1949 Chevrolet light duty truck, is an appropriate metaphor for today's K-12 system.
May 16, 2014
The 60th anniversary of the landmark decision in Brown v. Board of Education provides us with a chance to reevaluate what has happened in the time since. In 1954, the argument was that the student's access to resources was unfair and therefore unconstitutional. That underlying problem has not been solved today.
May 15, 2014
All students, regardless of race, socio-economic status, county, or side of town, deserve an education that will set them up for success in life. Funding equity in Connecticut is an integral part of making this vision a reality for all students. Then, science "on a cart" might just become an urban legend.
May 14, 2014
The School Climate Bill of Rights was an important first step in raising awareness around the critical role school environment plays in the pursuit of higher academic achievement. The next step is making sure we're using the data and other outcomes it created to actually help students.
May 13, 2014
Our ability to close the teaching quality gap is one of the most important steps towards closing the opportunity gap for low-income students of color.
May 12, 2014
In the history of the United States, there are a few landmark moments when institutional barriers that preordained entire groups of people to a life of struggle and inequality came crashing down, opening a path to opportunity. One of those moments was May 17, 1954, when, in a unanimous decision, the United States Supreme Court ruled in Brown v. Board of Education that state laws establishing separate but "equal" schools based on race were inherently unequal and therefore unconstitutional. This decision began the process of healing one of the greatest scars laid upon our nation's history: the Supreme Court's 1896 Plessy v. Ferguson decision establishing legal apartheid.
May 09, 2014
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.