You know you're doing something right when Dave Barry (yes, that Dave Barry) calls your first book "very funny." That's just one reason to highlight Roxanna Elden, whose book See Me After Class: Advice for Teachers by Teachers earned not just Barry's praise but kudos from a host of educators. The audience whose praise Elden most values, though, aren't nationally recognized figures but the novice classroom teachers who are finding a lifeline in her book. At a time when many teachers feel their voices are excluded from public debates about education, Elden, a full-time classroom teacher, is bringing teacher voice ...


What to do about chronically low-performing public schools is one of the biggest--and most debated--challenges in public education today. As President of the School Turnaround Group at MassInsight, Justin Cohen tackles this challenge every day, working with states and schools districts to put in place the right conditions and policies and turn around low-performing schools. Since graduating from Yale in 2002, Cohen has worked in a variety of education organizations: the D.C. Public Schools under Chancellor Michelle Rhee, Edison Schools, and the National Alliance of Public Charter Schools. He serves on the Board of the Cesar Chavez Public Charter ...


Rafael Corrales is "a start-up guy." As an undergraduate at Georgia Tech (from which he graduated at only 19 years old), Corrales, an Atlanta native, co-founded College Knowledge, a tutoring company serving middle and high school students in the Atlanta area. Since then, he's worked with a variety of start-ups both in and out of education, including RentJuice and HubSpot. While attending Harvard Business School, Corrales co-founded LearnBoost, an online gradebook, lesson planner, and calendar for teachers, students and parents that has been named one of the best start-ups of 2010. Now based in San Francisco, he also blogs frequently ...


Karim Ani is a guy who asks interesting questions ... and then translates them into real-world math lessons: "Do people with small feet pay more for shoes?" (Ratios & proportions) "Have video game consoles followed Moore's Law?" (Exponential growth) "Is Wheel of Fortune rigged?" (Percents & probabilities) These are just a few of the questions around which Mathalicious builds high-quality, standards-based math lessons designed to transform how students learn math, and how teachers teach it. This emphasis on interesting questions is hardly surprising. Ani, a former middle school math teacher and coach, views Socrates as his role model. At a time when many ...


Over the past 15 years, public education in the United States has been profoundly shaped by the work of a generation of young educators and reformers who launched their careers in the early 1990s: people like Wendy Kopp, Dave Levin, Mike Feinberg, Michelle Rhee, Chris Barbic, Rick Hess, and my own colleagues Kim Smith and Andrew Rotherham. The first class of Teach for America corps members (1990) alone included a host of people who have since launched and led influential education organizations and/or had significant impacts at the local, state, and national levels. And its successors haven't done too ...


Alyssa Rosenberg reports on a forthcoming wave of school- and teacher-focused TV shows and movies, attributing the new pop culture focus on education to increased awareness in the wake of Waiting for Superman, Race to Nowhere, and other education-focused documentaries. My question is: What took so long? In fairness, pop culture is no stranger to education--the saintly teacher movie is a well-worn cliche, and some of our most cherished movies and TV shows have draw gold from high school drama (and comedy!). But given the prevalence of both dramas and comedies organized around the workplaces of doctors, lawyers, and police ...


If you want an indication of the serious potential for real progress on educational transformation in Tennessee under new Commissioner Kevin Huffman, the announcement that YES! Prep President Chris Barbic is leaving the organization he founded to head-up a new statewide Achievement School District (a vehicle for taking over and transforming chronically low-performing schools) is a pretty damn impressive sign. Barbic is a real education rock star, he's leaving one of the strongest organizations in the space at an important point in its growth, as well as a community where he has serious roots/connections, and taking on an incredibly ...


By guestblogger Alexandra Usher The opinions expressed below are solely those of the author, and not endorsed or supported by the Center on Education Policy. High stakes or no stakes, testing still has consequences Secretary Duncan has made it clear that he's in favor of standardized testing, value-added assessments, encouraging states and districts to build data systems, linking teacher pay to student test scores, and generally gathering a lot of data about students and using it for high stakes purposes. Recently, President Obama was criticized for appearing to counter that sentiment by suggesting that too much testing is bad for ...


By guestblogger Alexandra Usher There has been a lot of debate lately about the federal government's proper role in education, with some pundits and politicians casually throwing around the suggestion that "the feds get out of education", and others calling for the total elimination of the Department of Education. These are popular taglines because they appeal to our idealized notion that each community, knowing what's best for its kids and families, should support and control its own local school. But this completely ignores an important detail: the federal government has, since its inception, played a vital role in education. Before ...


I'm going on vacation for a few days. Alexandra Usher is going to be guest-blogging in my absence. Alexandra is a Research Assistant at the Center on Education Policy in Washington, D.C., where she has authored reports on the original federal land grants for education, adequate yearly progress, and will soon be co-authoring a review of voucher research. She began her career in education by spending a year as a Fulbright Teaching Assistant in Nuremberg, Germany and earned her B.A. in International Affairs from The George Washington University. She received an outstanding public school education in Chicago's northern ...


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