May 2011 Archives

Common-Standards Supports for Teachers Eyed

Five states that have adopted the Common Core State Standards are beginning work on an initiative to create an open-source "platform" that would help teachers access, download, and create resources tied to the common standards, officials from the Council of Chief State School Officers told us today. CCSSO and the states of New York, Illinois, Massachusetts, North Carolina, and Colorado will take the lead in helping design and pilot the platform, with financing promised by the Seattle-based Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the Carnegie Corporation of New York. Four other states—Delaware, Kentucky, Georgia, and Louisiana—are planning to take ...


UPDATED: Bipartisan Team Reintroduces Troops to Teachers Bill

A bipartisan team has reintroduced a bill to expand eligibility for the Troops to Teachers credentialing program.


NCTQ Publishes ESEA Recommendations

The National Council on Teacher Quality unveils teacher-quality proposals for the next iteration of the No Child Left Behind Act.


Rhee Teams Up With Former Union Chief Parker

Top on the list of stories that caught my attention this morning as I was catching up on last week's news was the announcement that former Washington Teachers' Union President George Parker would be joining former District of Columbia Chancellor Michelle Rhee's advocacy group, Students First, as a senior policy fellow. In that role, he'll be talking to state lawmakers and teachers' unions' officials about the need for unions to be involved in changes to the profession, including better policing of their own members' performance. This came as a big surprise to a lot of folks. The president of the ...


AFT Calls for End to Pension 'Spiking,' but Defends Benefits

The American Federation of Teachers says that, despite a lot of the political rhetoric out there, teachers' retirement benefits are not overly generous. But it also calls for ending some practices, such as pension "spiking" that raise taxpayer costs.


On Brief Hiatus

Readers, I'm taking a short break this week and will be back with you promptly on the 23rd. In the meantime, keep those comments, tips, and emails coming to ssawchuk@epe.org. Stephen...


Developments on 'Effectiveness' Materialize in Texas, Illinois

The week saw two major developments in teacher effectiveness policies in Illinois and in Houston, Texas.


NEA to Consider New Evaluation Policies

This summer, NEA delegates will vote whether to approve a policy statement allowing test scores to be one of several measures of a teacher's evaluation.


Teacher Ambassadors Highlight the Complexity of Education Policy

By guest blogger Liana Heitin Yesterday I had the chance to speak with several of the U.S. Department of Education Teacher Ambassador Fellows at the teacher town hall meeting hosted by the department. TAFs spend a year working with federal officials on policy issues--some stay in the classroom and work as consultants and others take a year leave of absence to work at the department full time. The half dozen TAFs I spoke with were in their 10th month of the fellowship. Above all, they agreed the year had given them a deeper appreciation for the complexity of policy ...


NEA On Track to Endorse Obama

Despite its philosophical differences on education with Obama, the National Education Association plans to endorse him for a second term in office.


Standards for Teacher-Leaders Unveiled

A consortium releases standards for teacher leaders.


Education Department to Seek Feedback on Teacher Ed. Accountability

The USED will seek feedback as it decides whether to seek changes to teacher education accountability requirements.


National Teacher of the Year Named

Michelle Shearer, a chemistry teacher at Urbana High School in Ijamsville, Md., has been selected as the 61st National Teacher of the Year, according to the Council of Chief State School Officers.


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