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August 29, 2014

New Books Highlight Teacher Expertise

Elizabeth Green's Building a Better Teacher and Dana Goldstein's The Teacher Wars are two new books that address teaching and teacher policy.

August 27, 2014

New Ed. Books Call Attention to Undervalued Role of Teacher Expertise

Two new books out this fall on teaching and teacher policy may reflect a shift in thinking about school reform.

August 27, 2014

Contracting Not an Easy Answer, as Los Angeles iPad Venture Shows

After disclosures of possible improprieties in the negotiation and letting of contracts, Los Angeles Unified School District Superintendent John Deasy has halted purchases of Apple iPads under a $30-million contract that was to be the first round of a $1-billion program. Now that the district has hit the reset button on the troubled program, it's time to learn from experience. The real lesson here isn't about iPads; it's about managing through contract.

August 19, 2014

What Happens When Teachers Run Schools?

Teacher-led schools are often defined by what they don't have: a conventional administrator. At the Mission Hill School in Boston, the subject of a PBS Newshour report on Monday, the school as a whole makes decisions and the principal doesn't even have a proper office. Though still rare, these schools carry valuable lessons about how to expand responsibility and authority for teachers. Yet, the real payoff occurs in how students step up and take responsibility for their own learning.

August 18, 2014

The Lesser Risk

A school district in Kentucky takes a bold step to transform the learning experience for all of its students.

August 12, 2014

Steve Barr Tries to Bridge Union-Reformer Divide in Reboot of California's 'Democrats for Education Reform'

Steve Barr has organizing in his DNA, and he, along with retired union leader Joe Boyd, have announced an effort to recreate the California chapter of Democrats for Education Reform as a union-friendly environment. They want to go beyond wedge issues and toward big picture ideas that have broad support. But just getting used to saying pro-union and DFER in the same sentence is a stretch.

August 11, 2014

Negative and Nasty Regime Politics: Another L.A. School Board Election

Tuesday, voters will go to the polls in Los Angeles to elect a member in school board District #1. The race between retired school administrator George McKenna and aspiring politician Alex Johnson has turned negative and nasty. It's enough to make you think that there must be a better way. Maybe, just maybe, some political energy could be directed toward capacity building rather than regime politics.

August 07, 2014

What We Read to Keep On California 'On'

Readers have asked us how to keep up with what's happening in California. Reading 'On California,' and following us on Twitter, is a good way, the best in our estimation. But what do we read? And what do we recommend to our readers? Here's an incomplete and changing list.

August 01, 2014

Where Deeper Learning, 21st-Century Skills, and Global Competence Meet

Today we share a piece by a teacher at Oak Hill High School in Cincinnati, Ohio—a member of Asia Society's International Studies Schools Network. Meghan Sullivan is a French and World History teacher who has openly embraced the pillars of 21st century skills, global competence, and deeper learning. Read on to see how she combines all of these in her classroom.

July 28, 2014

From Schooling to Learning: Create a Community of Learners First

A new book explores eight high schools that are transforming student lives by placing engaging learning first.

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