Member Since 2009


Frederick Hess, AEI's director of education policy studies, is an educator, political scientist, author, and popular speaker and commentator. He has authored such influential books as Spinning Wheels, Revolution at the Margins, and Common Sense School Reform. A former public high school social studies teacher, he has also taught education and policy at universities including Georgetown, Harvard, Rice, the University of Virginia, and the University of Pennsylvania. He is executive editor of Education Next, a faculty associate with Harvard’s Program on Education Policy and Governance, and serves on the board of directors for the National Association of Charter School Authorizers and on the review board for the Broad Prize in Urban Education. At AEI, Mr. Hess addresses a range of K-12 and higher education issues.

Published Articles & Media

Kid sitting on a tube in the snow

End Snow Days by Switching to Remote? Not So Fast.

District leaders may be tempted, but students, parents may be ill-served.
Third grader Madison Cortes, right, reads off math problems to classmates on zoom while teacher Maria Mirkovic looks on at Christa McAuliffe School in Jersey City, N.J., Thursday, April 29, 2021.

Getting Ed-Tech Wrong Would Be a Bitter Pandemic Legacy

Bad ed-tech habits that formed during the shutdown risk compromising instruction and even slowing the return to school next fall.
Wade Eyerly

There’s Insurance for Homes or Cars—Why Not College Degrees?

Entrepeneur offers colleges a way to guarantee their graduates' future income
Illustration depicting the difference between equality and equity

When Does Educational Equity Become Educationally Unethical?

"The push for equity stumbles into a truly gruesome place when educators are being trained or directed to shortchange some students based on how they look or where they live."
Jim Balfanz

City Year CEO on Supporting Students Through the Pandemic

Monitoring chats, and making sure students are showing up and signing on.
A rural school house

What’s It Take for Philanthropy to Help Rural Schools?

Building trust, measuring impact informally may work in other places, too.
Photo of Patricia Levesque

How Jeb Bush’s ExcelinEd Is Tackling the Next 5 Years

"With the disruption of the pandemic, we have the opportunity to innovate."
Photo of Richard Elmore

Remembering Harvard’s Richard Elmore

A profound and hugely influential scholar
Photo of Amir Nathoo

Outschool CEO on How to Engage Half a Million Virtual Learners

Group guitar lessons, math-and-Minecraft see rapid growth online.

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