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February 27, 2014

In Education, Bringing the Dark Matter Into the Light

In a new article for ESPN, celebrity statistician Nate Silver chronicles the rise of big data in professional sports -- and the considerable unknowns, or "Dark Matter," that remains. Sam Chaltain wonders about the implications his article has for public education -- and if it's possible for the opposing armies in the reform debates to find common ground over what should be measured in American schools, and why, and how.

February 27, 2014

The Failure of Test-Based Accountability

In an ongoing series of posts about accountability, Marc Tucker discusses the damaging effects that test-based accountability has had on the profession of teaching.

February 26, 2014

'Early Implementers' of Common Core Grapple With Aligning Tests, Curriculum

Four districts that took an early and aggressive approach to implementation illustrate the difficulty of finding good instructional materials aligned to the new standards and supplying quality professional development.

February 21, 2014

NCLB, California and Accountability in All Its Guises

Marc Tucker explains that there is no evidence that test-based accountability, for schools or for teachers, actually improves student achievement.

February 20, 2014

Analysis Finds NCLB Waivers Too Often Maintain Flawed Accountability Practices

A new analysis finds that NCLB flexibility waivers too often continue flawed accountability practices of the original law rather than considering non-test-based indicators, student growth, student demographics or results from subjects other than reading and math.

February 14, 2014

Pasi Sahlberg on Finland's Recent PISA Results

Marc Tucker interviews Pasi Sahlberg about Finland's fall in the rankings on the 2012 PISA.

February 11, 2014

Large-District Superintendents Lay Out Their Vision for ESEA Renewal

Fifteen countywide or suburban district superintendents call for a lot less testing and much more leeway for states and districts on setting and achieving goals in any new version of the federal Elementary and Secondary Education Act.

February 07, 2014

What Now? Federal Education Policy Adrift

How the federal education agenda with an emphasis on on charters, federally imposing the Common Core initiative, teacher evaluation, and test based accountability is seeking solutions in all the wrong places and pushing policies that are not backed by evidence.

February 03, 2014

Children Need More Choices in Kindergarten, NAEYC Expert Says

An official with the National Association for the Education of Young Children worries that kindergartners have less choice these days to pursue their own interests.

January 31, 2014

The Big Apple's Chance to Course-Correct on Testing

Those who follow New York City schools have been witnessing a time-honored ritual -- pro-testing school reformers have mightily overreached, inviting pushback that's now poised to dismantle much of their useful handiwork. Mayor de Blasio has said that he and his new chancellor, Carmen Fariña, will "do everything in our power to reduce focus on high-stakes testing." At the press conference where he introduced Fariña, de Blasio said, "[Testing] has taken us down the wrong road and, within limits of state and federal law, we will do all we can to roll back that focus." This strident stance is misguided and likely to yield unfortunate results.

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