Member Since 2009

Peter Meyer

Peter Meyer is a former News Editor of Life magazine and the author of numerous nonfiction books, including the critically acclaimed The Yale Murder (Empire Books, 1982; Berkley Books, 1983) and Death of Innocence (G.P. Putnam’s Sons, 1985; Berkley Books, 1986). Over the course of his three-decade journalism career Meyer, who holds a masters degree in history from the University of Chicago, has touched down in cities around the globe, from Bennington to Baghdad, and has written hundreds of stories, on subjects as varied as anti-terrorist training for American ambassadors to the history of the 1040 income tax form. His work has appeared in such publications as Harper's, Vanity Fair, National Geographic, New York, Life, Time and People. Since 1991 Meyer has focused his attentions on education reform in the United States, an interest joined while writing a profile of education reformer E.D. Hirsch for Life. Meyer subsequently helped found a charter school, served on his local Board of Education (twice) and, for the last eight years, has been an editor at Education Next. His articles for the journal include “The Early Education of our Next President” (Fall 2008), “New York City’s Education Battles: The mayor, the schools, and the `rinky-dink candy store’” (Spring 2008), “Learning Separately: The case for single-sex schools” (Winter 2008), and “Can Catholic Schools Be Saved?” (Spring 2007). Meyer also writes and edits, mostly on education, for the American Enterprise Institute, the Manhattan Institute, and the Thomas B. Fordham Foundation, where he is a Senior Visiting Fellow.

Published Articles & Media

The End of an Era: Ravitch v. Klein

Diane Ravitch took some parting shots at Joel Klein last week with a short post on the New York Review of Books’ blog headlined “New York’s New School Czar.”

The Middle School Mess

If you love bungee jumping, you’re the middle school type

End of an era in New York City

The public education world shook yesterday with the news that New York City’s Chancellor Joel Klein was resigning.

To Close or Not to Close? Not a Question in Gotham

While the research jury may still be out on the turnaround versus closure question, New York City has at least come to appreciate the human dimension. Instead of just announcing a school closure, as it has done in the past, this year school officials are meeting with parents and staff “before making a final decision.”

The Culture of Poverty — or the Poverty of Culture?

Bottom line: our education system has perpetuated the culture of poverty legend long enough, not by failing to integrate schools, but by failing to teach black children.

Be Quiet! Sit Up! Listen! Tie Your Shoes! Character Ed Takes It on the Shins!

Why was I not surprised to read the Education Week story on a new federal study, “the largest…to date,” says Ed Week, that pooh-poohs character education? (ie. It doesn’t work.)

Carroll to Charter Colleagues: Just say NO!

Thomas Carroll, one of New York’s leading charter school directors, has just sent out a memo to fellow charter network operators in the Empire State urging them NOT to participate in Race to the Top. Carroll says that the red tape that comes with the money is not worth it for charters.

From “Sailing the Ocean Blue” to “I Pledge Allegiance”

I was gratified to see the new book on the Pledge of Allegiance that I co-authored with Jeffrey Owen Jones reviewed in the Wall Street Journal yesterday morning. Unfortunately, I never met Jones whose book this was — and is. A gifted television and film producer who stumbled onto the Pledge tale while teaching at the University of Rochester, Jones unfortunately died before he could finish the project. Tom Dunne, a longtime friend and publisher with St. Martin’s Press, asked me if I could help.

And the Answer Is? (Shh! We Can’t Tell You!)

Though nothing that most educators didn’t know, Jennifer Medina’s front-page story in the New York Times this morning is worth reading—if you like reviewing, in slow motion, the tape of a train wreck.

King of the Mountain!

David Steiner, the New York State Education Commissioner, surely knows that politics in New York state is a blood sport and that the powerful teachers union plays it well. But he also seems to be wise enough not to shout “King of the Mountain!”

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