Last Friday, Mark Edmundson, an English professor at The University of Virginia, wrote a scathing critique of online learning in The New York Times. Mr. Edmundson's understanding of his subject lacked an in-depth intellectual or practical study of the myriad diverse programs available to students from grade school to graduate school.
While the NRC definition of deeper learning purportedly shifts from "21st century skills" to broader "21st century competencies" including skills, knowledge, and expertise, the definition seems accurate - but a bit shallow.
This country is stuck in disingenuous debate fueled by superpac superficiality. There are great examples of launching pads around the country. It would be great if, rather than mudslinging, we saw more launch pad politics.
Leadership Public Schools (LPS) is a network of four small high-poverty high schools in Richmond, Oakland, Hayward, and San Jose, California. These locations (and nearby Summit Prep and Downtown College Prep) are the best example of great high schools combining the historic benefits of small rigorous and supportive environments with the potential of incorporating personal digital learning.
This first post in the DIY series is about the monthly call I get from an edupreneur asking, "Should we form a nonprofit or for-profit corporation?" There is no simple answer. Twenty years ago a mission-focused organization would have been formed as a nonprofit but these days there are lots of dot-coms as focused on impact as return.
The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation is sponsoring the Automated Student Assessment Prize (ASAP) to improve the quality of student assessment in America and, as a result, increase the quantity and quality of student writing.
Barbara Bergstrom takes a look at "free school reform" in Sweden and its effects on the classroom. She shares critical observations around quality and reputation, looking at the Swedish Knowledge Schools as a primary case study.
Improvement is doing things better. Innovation is doing things differently. Well-deployed technology enables both. Two bloggers missed these important distinctions this week.
Robert Putnam's data is really disturbing. The Harvard sociologist is at it again. Like Bowling Alone, Putnam's new data (discussed recently at the Aspen Ideas Festival) suggests the opportunity gap is widening. More than race and poverty, class and a lack of social mobility are widening gaps that reduce opportunity.
After I described blended learning at a recent conference, Diana Frezza from Scholastic came up to me and said, "Hey, we invented blended learning with READ 180." Having seen a lot of READ 180 classrooms over the last 20 years, I knew it was a proven multi-modal reading intervention. But I wasn't up to date on READ 180 Next Generation so I called Scholastic president Margery Mayer.